There are a couple Texas Rangers rookies who have gotten major league time and are expected by many to break spring camp with the big club this season. Mike Olt, Jurickson Profar and Martin Perez are all expected to have more than minimal impact on the 2013 Rangers club. But the questions is just how much more.
Lets take a look at Olt first. This six foot two inch, two hundred ten pound corner infielder was called up at the beginning of last August. In the two months he spent with the Rangers last year he got into sixteen games with a total of thirty three at bats.
That doesn’t seem like much but when you are stuck behind Adrian Beltre who is not just one of the best third baseman in the league (arguably the best) but he is one of the top ten to twenty players overall, and young Mitch Moreland, you would be lucky to see any time at all. In the thirty three at bats he only got five hits which is a .152 average, he only hit in five RBI’s and did not hit his first home run.
Sadly this twenty five year old kid is still not going to see much time because of Beltre and an ever progressing Moreland, but he will be the backup whenever someone needs an off day.
Next lets take a look at number one overall rated prospect Profar. He has decided to not play in the World Baseball Classic so he can spend all of spring with the Rangers. That seems like a very good decision to me. He only has one at bat in the majors and does need to have a good spring to make the club.
In his one at bat in the majors he hit a single. Thats right folks Profar has a 1.000 average for his career. As a middle infielder this nineteen year old, six foot, one hundred sixty five pound kid from off the Venezuelan coast will not see much time. But he is fast enough to cover center field and that may be a real option here.
Finally left handed pitcher Perez. He doesn’t have a stereotypical pitchers body standing only six foot and weighing in at just one hundred ninety pounds. He did spend more legitimate time with the Rangers last year than the other two but playing in his age twenty two season this year I can’t see him being a starter.
Last year he only got into twelve games but threw a total of thirty eight innings. This kid did not pitch very well in the majors last year. He had a one and four record with a 5.45 era, a .297 batting average against (league average is .254) and only struck out twenty five in his thirty eight innings. Its likely Perez will start the season in the bullpen and need to work his way into the starting rotation.
But with injury prone Colby Lewis, returning experiment Alexi Ogando, still unknown Yu Darvish and the left handed mixture of Derek Holland and Matt Harrison, this rotation shouldn’t be impossible to crack.
By the end of the year Profar will be splitting time with Elvis Andrus and Ian Kinsler, Perez will be in the starting rotation, and Olt will still be sitting behind Beltre and Moreland waiting for some kind of an opening.