Are the Texas Rangers prepared to cut Rougned Odor this spring?
Manager Chris Woodward had some interesting comments regarding the second base competition and Rougned Odor, leading us to believe he may be out the door.
As I was scrolling through the Twitter-verse, I came across two articles that caught my eye.
The first was Levi Weaver’s article ($) previewing Willie Calhoun’s place in the outfield mix, and secondly, Adam Morris of Lone Star Ball’s take on manager Chris Woodward’s comments on the second base competition.
LSB cited the skipper’s perspective on Solak’s versatility, and Odor’s lack thereof.
"“Rougie, I can’t do that with. If he comes into camp and he’s only competing with Solak at second base, and he doesn’t win the job, it’s really hard to keep him on the roster if he can only play second base. If we have 26 guys, a four-man bench, and one guy plays second base only … that lack of versatility or flexibility, for me, it doesn’t make sense. So that’s why we’re kind of asking Rougie to move around.” – Chris Woodward"
For Rougie, that doesn’t bode well for his chances of making the Opening Day roster.
To put these remarks into proper context, Adam Morris has been of the belief, especially over the past year, that Odor’s time in Texas is coming to an end.
The point Morris is trying to convey is exactly the same as the manager’s.
The Texas Rangers can’t carry an extra second baseman on their bench.
Odor’s lack of versatility, poor range and limited improvement are all red flags for the organization, the front office and the fans.
Of course, Woody wants to see if he can play second, third, shortstop and maybe in left field, but if Odor is hellbent on being a big league second baseman, he’s got to go.
Rougned Odor’s struggles are no surprise to anyone that has any familiarity with the organization, and frankly, it’s been laughable the past few seasons.
It’s time for the Texas Rangers to admit that Rougned Odor has become a failure.
Since 2017, Rougned Odor has batted .207 with an average of 22 home runs, 128.5 strikeouts and 33.5 walks per season.
That production is certainly not worth over $24 million for the next several seasons.
Reading through Woody’s comments and Adam Morris’ take on those comments, I find it very hard to believe that Rougned Odor could be on the Texas Rangers’ Opening Day roster.
I’ve wanted to see Rougie turn it around so badly, for his sake and for the sake of the Rangers, but his time is surely up in Texas.
Minimal production, average defense and either an unwillingness to learn/change his mechanics or just being overwhelmed by the sabermetrics of it all, it’s evident he needs a change of scenery.
But where would he go?
We’ve tried shipping him to Boston, St. Louis and the New York Mets, but none of these teams are in dire need of a struggling, power-hitting second baseman.
One more thing to consider. When the Rangers acquired Khris Davis, they acquired a top-10 strikeout leader in the league.
That leaves them with three out of the top ten offensive strikeout leaders in their lineup, including Gallo and Odor.
For a team that needs more on-base production, adding a third swing-and-miss bat is not a great move, unless another one is being shipped out.
Since 2017, the trio of Davis, Gallo and Odor have combined for 1,652 strikeouts. Odor has 514 of them.
Obviously, big power comes with the strikeouts, but having three guys with over 500 strikeouts in the same lineup is hard to fathom.
For the Texas Rangers, eating Odor’s contract might be painful in the short-term, but gives them the financial and positional flexibility to let the young guns play their way into the major leagues.
So, with all that being said, the future for Rougned Odor in Texas looks very, very bleak.
He brought us one of the greatest right-hooks we’ve ever seen, mammoth home runs, exciting bat flips and several steals of home, but there is simply not a spot in Arlington for him anymore.
With his back against the wall and the faith of the organization dissipating, Rougie has dug himself into a hole so deep that it seems impossible to climb out of.
He has this spring to prove why the Texas Rangers should hang onto him, but with a talented young group of players that the Rangers possess, his chances are few and far between.
Rougned Odor and his horses could be seeing their way out the front doors of Globe Life Field and onto the next big league team willing to take on a slumping second baseman.