ARLINGTON -- Lance Berkman plans to continue rehabbing left hip inflammation that caused the designated hitter to contemplate retirement. He met with general manager Jon Daniels before Wednesday's game and felt his return was in the best interest of a club that didn't acquire a bat at the Trade Deadline and could lose Nelson Cruz pending the ongoing Biogenesis investigation.
"I'm coming back, but it just has to get to a point where I don't need a pinch-runner every time I'm on base," Berkman said.
Berkman has felt improvement over the last two days from the injury that put him on the disabled list on July 7. Berkman hit in the cages Wednesday and hit on the field Thursday, but his biggest concern was running. He said he's about 50 percent after running 60-yard strides 10 times Thursday. Berkman said the hip injury crept up on him when he attempted to increase the pace beyond that level.
"It's not unrealistic to expect discomfort from here on out, I've just got to manage it," Berkman said.
Berkman has set a personal goal to begin a medical rehabilitation assignment between Aug. 8-9. He's unsure if he'll hit that goal, but it'd likely make him available for an eight-game homestand that starts Aug. 13 against the Brewers.
"If I can push myself to endure a little discomfort, I'm willing to do that to help my team win," Berkman said.
Cruz: I'll 'make a decision when I have to make it'
ARLINGTON -- Nelson Cruz remained quiet on any details about Major League Baseball's ongoing investigation with his association to the Miami-area Biogenesis clinic.
"I've heard a lot of stuff, but I cannot comment," Cruz said. "It's something that I have to make a decision when I have to make it."
Cruz did not comment on the possible suspension he faces from MLB or when he expects a ruling on the suspension. He remained consistent with his comments earlier this week that he has not made any decision on whether he will accept or appeal any suspension handed down by MLB.
"I haven't made any decisions yet," Cruz said. "I'll let you know when I've made a decision."
Cruz was 5-of-9 with a home run and three walks on the homestand before Thursday's game, and he went 0-for-3 with a strikeout before exiting, as a precautionary measure, with tightness in his left quad.
He had hit safely in three straight games, including a solo home run in the second inning Wednesday against the Angels. The Rangers entered Thursday's game against the D-backs just four games behind the A's for first place in the American League West.
"It's tough," Cruz said on the situation. "We're in a good situation now. We're close to first place and close to the Wild Card also. Hopefully everything plays out well. That's what I hope."
Sardinas, Odor among trio moved to Double-A
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers promoted three of their top nine prospects to Double-A Frisco from Class A Advanced Myrtle Beach on Thursday. Infielder Luis Sardinas, infielder Rougned Odor and right-handed pitcher Luke Jackson made the jump to the RoughRiders as part of six promotions by the organization.
Sardinas, 20, is ranked as the 77th best prospect in baseball. He hit .297 with a home run and 31 RBIs in 95 games with the Pelicans. He's is the second-best prospect in the organization and the ninth-best shortstop prospect in baseball.
Odor, 19, is the youngest player at the Double-A level by nearly three months. He's ranked as baseball's seventh-best second-base prospect and the fifth-best prospect in the farm system. He led Myrtle Beach in batting (.304) and stolen bases (27) in 98 games before his promotion. He was part of the Futures Game "Final Vote" this season.
Sardinas and Odor hit 1-2 in Frisco's lineup Thursday, starting at shorstop and second base, respectively, and went a combined 4-for-10. Sardinas was 1-for-5, while Odor was 3-for-5 with a triple and a run scored.
Jackson, 21, is the ninth-best Rangers prospect and the third-best pitching prospect in the organization. The former first-round pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft went 9-4 with a 2.41 ERA in 19 starts. His 104 strikeouts are fourth most in the Texas farm system.
• Adrian Beltre was the unanimous selection as the club's Player of the Month in July. He led the AL during the month with nine home runs. He hit .369 with 19 RBIs in 26 games. He has received the award in four of the last six months dating back to last season.
• The Rangers became just the fifth team in Major League history with three consecutive walk-off home runs. It hasn't occurred since June 26-29, 2004, for the Tigers. It's just the second time this feat occurred in a three-game series sweep, along with the 1999 D-backs.
• The Rangers begin a three-game series with the A's Friday in Oakland. The A's will send out Tommy Milone, Jarrod Parker and A.J. Griffin during the series. The Rangers will counter with Alexi Ogando, Matt Garza and Derek Holland.
Master Tesfatsion is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.