The news coming out of the Texas Rangers camp these days is that they are done with major transactions. Shin-Soo Choo is just too expensive, Nelson Cruz wants to many years and it is “doubtful” he will return to the a Texas Rangers according to Jon Daniels. Tanaka would be a nice addition to an already strong rotation, but pitching is not what the Rangers are focused on right now. They added Prince Fielder, a power hitting left handed first baseman, and they added Michael Choice, am outfield prospect that many in the organization believe is ready to play at the big league level.
Choice, in my opinion, is going to go into spring training as the leading candidate to be the Texas Rangers everyday left fielder. Choice, who was traded for outfielder Craig Gentry, is from the area and seems to be very excited to be playing for the team he grew up rooting for. But what do we know about Michael Choice? Why is he good enough to trade away Gentry, a speedy fan favorite? I’m glad you asked.
Michael has pretty good stats all the way through his years in the Athletics minors organization. In A ball Michael showed the most power. He had a .285/.376/.542 line with 30 home-runs and 82 RBI. In Double A he had a .287/.356/.423 line with 10 home-runs and 58 RBI and in AAA ball he had a .302/.390/.405 line with 14 home-runs and 89 RBI. He came up for a little with the Athletics last season but only saw 19 at bats.
Michael is a guy who has power, can also work a walk, and has some speed, but he is not going to be as fast as Gentry. He will, most likely, hit more home-runs though. If the Texas Rangers count on Choice to man left field (which I think they will) and Jurickson Profar to man second base, we are looking at some young guys playing some very important rolls for this team, kind of like a few seasons ago when the Texas Rangers were counting on Elvis Andrus, Neftali Feliz , Ian and other young players to help the team win.
I feel good about the way the team is constructed right now. Would I like some more power hitters? You bet. But I think the Texas Rangers are built to compete this season, and that is all I ask for every season.