What can the Texas Rangers expect from Leody Taveras?

HOUSTON, TEXAS - SEPTEMBER 03: Leody Taveras #65 of the Texas Rangers pops out in the first inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park on September 03, 2020 in Houston, Texas. Houston won 8-4. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - SEPTEMBER 03: Leody Taveras #65 of the Texas Rangers pops out in the first inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park on September 03, 2020 in Houston, Texas. Houston won 8-4. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) /
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Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports /

Taveras has shown an above-average plate presence and given quality at-bats for the Texas Rangers.

One of the glaring questions for Leody Taveras has always been whether he could consistently hit.

He has the tools and ability to be a good hitter, but hasn’t put it all together yet. He’s starting to turn the corner on his hitting of late, though.

For example, he has never been much of a power-hitter, but he adjusted his swing at the 2020 alternate site and during Summer Camp to create more lift, which resulted in a 27% whiff rate.

Keep in mind, his four homers last season halved his career best in the minors, and that number could increase with his development.

His .227 average was decent for a kid who never faced pitching at or above the Triple-A, but this is not the focus here.

The focus for Taveras is his advanced approach at the plate and his willingness to hit behind in the count, creating more walks and an increasing on-base percentage.

When looking at his numbers, he ranks 98th among major leaguers in hard hit percentage at 63%.

That is above several All Stars, including J.D. Martinez, Cody Bellinger and Francisco Lindor.

Taveras also sits at 83rd in the majors with a 67% walk rate, and got on-base at a .308 clip in 2020.

If his bat continues to develop, he could be a very effective leadoff hitter for the Rangers while also handling the bat and providing a little pop.

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