Jul 12, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers left fielder Jake Smolinski (20) holds up his glove after catching the fly-out hit by Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Josh Hamilton (not pictured) during the second inning of a game at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

Jake Smolinski: The new Texas Rangers left fielder


The Texas Rangers recently called up Jake Smolinski from the Round Rock Express.   In the minors he spent most of his time with the double-A Frisco Rough Riders (72 games/266 at-bats) and was recently promoted to triple-A Round Rock Express (8 games/30 at-bats).  He batted .267 for both clubs this season to have a combined .267 batting average in the minors.

What has been more impressive for Smolinski has been his defense in left field this year.   Even after being called up to the Texas Rangers, he has continued to impress.

It is only a small sample set, but after 6 games/17 at-bats he’s batting .471 with 3 doubles and 4 RBI.  While that by itself is very impressive, his defense in left field has also been outstanding.

No discredit to Shin-Soo Choo, but after Choo hurt his left ankle back in April he hasn’t been a very good defender.  It appears that Jake Smolinski could take over in left field if Choo ends up on the disabled list.

At this point in the season it might seem like the Texas Rangers are thinking about 2015.  Smolinski could be part of those plans if they are looking for a left fielder.  That could mean Shin-Soo Choo would be the regular designated hitter.

Watch: Jake Smolinski makes two outstanding diving catches, first robbing Josh Hamilton in the 2nd inning and then robbing Albert Pujols in the 3rd

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Tags: Albert Pujols Jake Smolinski Josh Hamilton Shin-soo Choo Texas Rangers