On Thursday the Texas Rangers announced that a pair of their everyday players were headed to the IL with pitching prospect Kyle Cody recalled.
The injuries continue to pile up for the Texas Rangers. Just a day after Willie Calhoun exited a 6-3 extra innings loss to the Padres in the top of the 10th inning, he was placed on the 10-day Injured List with a strained hamstring. Joining Calhoun is Texas’ starting shortstop Elvis Andrus who has been dealing with a lower back strain for a few days that have seen him get almost no action over the past few games. Recalled in their places were RHP Kyle Cody and INF Yadiel Rivera, both who were a part of the taxi squad for the Rangers on this current road trip.
Neither Calhoun nor Andrus were off to a stellar start this season which does limit the immediate negative impact of their injuries. Calhoun was hitting just .172 with a .430 OPS as he continues to try and nail down a starting role with the Rangers for the long-term.
The 25-year old is viewed by many as an important piece of the future for the Texas Rangers and in spurts has looked every bit of the talented offensive player he was dubbed when he was acquired from the Dodgers in 2017. However a lot of back and forth between the Majors and minors along with various injuries has no doubt slowed his progress. Losing Calhoun hurts Texas beyond the here and now as it yet again stalls his development as a key player.
Andrus, like Calhoun, was off to a slow start at the plate hitting just .184 with a .494 OPS. Texas had shuffled Andrus up and down the lineup in an attempt to mitigate the negative effects of his offensive struggles but he has been a weak spot in a Rangers’ lineup that as a whole is a weakness for the team. With his injury, Isiah Kiner-Falefa will no doubt get the bulk of time at shortstop, a positive turn of events, albeit under disappointing circumstances, for some who feel that he is the long-term option for Texas at short once the Elvis-era ends.
While losing two players who hold starting roles is always a blow for a club, there is some excitement on the horizon as pitching prospect Kyle Cody has been promoted to the big leagues for the first time in his career. The 26-year old was drafted by the Rangers in the 6th round of the 2015 draft out of the University of Kentucky. A 6’7″ right-hander, Cody features a solid fastball/slider combo but has more or less been out of action since 2017 due to Tommy John surgery. In 2017 though, Cody broke out posting a 2.64 ERA in 23 starts between the Single-A and High-A levels.
Cody will likely be used in relief, especially with the lack of game innings under his belt over the past couple of seasons. However, during his ascent through the Rangers system there was belief that he could develop into a solid big league starter and Texas no doubt would still love for that outcome to come to fruition.