DETROIT -- Rangers infielder Michael Young was among those who called Ivan Rodriguez on Thursday after hearing that he plans to retire. Young was Rodriguez's teammate in 2001-02 with the Rangers and again at the end of the 2009 season.
"Great guy, great teammate," Young said. "Knowing him and the competitor he is, he'd like to play a little more. But he's had a Hall of Fame career. It will be nice to celebrate that in Texas as a member of the Rangers. I'm excited about it."
Rodriguez, who played for the Rangers from 1991-2002, as well as the last month of the 2009 season, is planning to announce his retirement at a press conference on Monday at the Ballpark in Arlington. The Rangers will honor him in pregame ceremonies and have him throw out the first pitch.
Rodriguez won 10 of his 13 Gold Gloves while with the Rangers and played in 10 All-Star Games. He was also the 1999 American League Most Valuable Player, one of four Rangers to ever win that award.
"There's no question he was one of the best ever," said Rangers bench coach Jackie Moore, who was a coach with the ballclub in 1993-94. "What I remember the most about him was he was one of the best at throwing behind runners. Not only was he consistent at throwing you out at second base, but he could throw behind you at first base. He could completely shut down the running game.
"He was also a tough out at the plate. He used all fields and could hit the ball hard in the opposite direction. He played hard and always gave full effort. I not only enjoyed him as a teammate, but I also enjoyed watching him play."
Rangers manager Ron Washington called Rodriguez the best catcher he ever saw.
"He was the scariest guy behind that plate," Washington said. "It didn't matter if you were at first, second or third. He could get you wherever you were. He was a special catcher."
Young registers three hits in return to lineup
DETROIT -- Michael Young was back in the lineup on Thursday after missing a game with stiffness in his lower back and looked fresh with a 3-for-5 night.
"It's much better," Young said. "My range of motion is completely back. Going off my previous history with these injuries, I knew it would be fine in a day or two."
Young started at designated hitter as manager Ron Washington loaded his lineup with right-handed hitters against Tigers left-hander Adam Wilk. That meant Craig Gentry in center field, Mike Napoli at first base and Yorvit Torrealba behind the plate. Josh Hamilton was the only left-handed hitter in the starting lineup.
"This kid throws a lot of different pitches, a lot of offspeed stuff and cross-firing," Washington said. "I decided to put as many right-handers in the lineup as I can."
Torrealba was behind the plate for the first time with Yu Darvish on the mound and Napoli was at first base. Napoli, going into Thursday, was 7-for-13 with four home runs and nine RBIs in his last three games after starting the season 2-for-20. Napoli stayed hot, registering two hits, one of which was a second-inning solo home run.
"I'm going to keep Mike in the lineup," Washington said. "I said in Minnesota I'm going to get Mike as many at-bats as I can. He is one of the guys we expect to carry us, so we've got to let him swing his way out of his problems."
Torrealba's start on Thursday was his seventh in 13 games behind the plate. Napoli has started six while Thursday was his fifth at first base.
"They're both doing a good job," Washington said. "I'm trying to keep everybody engaged, not just those two. Everybody."
Murphy, Napoli listed on All-Star ballot
DETROIT -- The All-Star ballot was released on Thursday and there are two changes for the Rangers from last year. David Murphy is on the ballot as one of the Rangers' three outfielders and Mike Napoli is on there as the Rangers catcher. Yorvit Torrealba had that honor last year.
Napoli and Murphy said they have both been on the ballot just once before in their careers.
Napoli might have a serious shot at being the first Rangers catcher to start in an All-Star Game since Ivan Rodriguez in 2001. Napoli, going into Thursday, has played in 123 games since the start of the 2011 season and was hitting .316 with 34 home runs, 86 RBIs, a .411 on-base percentage and a .634 slugging percentage.
The American League All-Star catchers last year were Russell Martin of the Yankees, Alex Avila of the Tigers and Matt Wieters of the Orioles. Twins catcher Joe Mauer did not go last year, but has played in four All-Star Games.
"It would mean a lot, but I would want to earn it," Napoli said. "I definitely feel I have a shot, but I'll take it one day at a time. If it happens, it happens."
Washington on Rangers' pitchers
Three observations from manager Ron Washington on his pitching...
• On Derek Holland's performance against the Red Sox: "He had a great curveball, but also his changeup. He came up (in 2009) with the idea that he had one of the best changeups around. It disappeared for a year and a half, but it came back last night."
• On using Joe Nathan in a non-save situation with a 6-2 lead: "We're not about individual feats, we're about winning ballgames. He'll get plenty of chances to get saves. In my opinion, he was still saving the game. It just didn't go on his record."
• On Mike Adams now, as opposed to when he was acquired from the Padres last year: "He looks so much fresher. When we got him last year, he had already thrown (48) innings. He looks much fresher, that's the reason why we're getting results."
• About 5,000 tickets remain for each of the three games against the Yankees on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at the Ballpark in Arlington.
• Manager Ron Washington on Josh Hamilton sliding into first base, head-first, on an infield single on Wednesday night: "He smelled a hit. I wish he would stop, but you can't stop him from doing things when he smells a hit. When Josh smells a hit, that's what he does."
• Thursday's game against the Tigers marked the beginning of 10 straight games against AL playoff teams. The Rangers have four against the Tigers, three against the Yankees and three against the Rays next weekend at the Ballpark in Arlington.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.