JEWISH BASEBALL NEWS — From the way he’s played lately, you wouldn’t guess this was B Ian Kinsler‘s first time in the MLB playoffs, or that he’d sat out more than a third of the Texas Rangers’ regular season with injuries.

The 28-year-old continued his mastery of the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday (10/12/2010), going 3/4 with 3 RBIs and crushing a 2-run HR in the top of the 9th inning to cap off a 5-1 win. The victory earned Texas a trip to New York to face the Yankees in the American League Championship Series.

Overall, Kinsler has been among the top performers in the first round of the MLB playoffs. He leads all players in HRs (3/tie), RBIs (6), runs (5/tie), and on-base percentage (.500/tie); and he ranks second in batting average (.444) and slugging percentage (.944).

Kinsler is the only remaining Jewish player in the MLB playoffs. The first game of the Rangers/Yankees series takes place Friday (10/15/2010).