Texas Rangers: Charlie Culberson makes his case to start at third base

Mar 12, 2020; Lakeland, Florida, USA; Atlanta Braves infielder Charlie Culberson (8) thyrows to firsat for the inning ending out during the fourth inning against the Detroit Tigers at Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 12, 2020; Lakeland, Florida, USA; Atlanta Braves infielder Charlie Culberson (8) thyrows to firsat for the inning ending out during the fourth inning against the Detroit Tigers at Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports /
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Texas Rangers spring training
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After a two-for-two day against the San Francisco Giants, veteran utility-man Charlie Culberson is making a statement to not only make the Texas Rangers’ roster, but start at the hot corner.

Charlie Culberson made his Texas Rangers debut on Monday against the San Francisco Giants, and did not disappoint.

The fan-favorite utility-man went 2-2 on the day and scored the Rangers’ only run on a wild pitch.

What’s more impressive is the way he sprayed the ball across all fields.

In Culberson’s first at-bat, he shot a single to the opposite field, and pulled the second of his two hits into left field.

Charlie Culberson’s hot start could give him an early edge in the Texas Rangers’ third base competition.

Yes, it was his first game and yes, it was the Texas Rangers’ second game, but his strong performance has put the third base competition into full swing.

There are four players, at least, fighting for playing time as the Texas Rangers’ Opening Day third baseman: Culberson, Brock Holt, Rougned Odor and Andy Ibanez.

Related Story. The Texas Rangers' third base competition. light

We’ve seen all of these guys in the Rangers’ first two games, which leads us to speculate who will take the lead at the hot corner by springs end.

I personally believe that both Brock Holt and Charlie Culberson will make the team’s Opening Day roster, kicking Rougned Odor and his massive contract on the curb.

Assuming both Culberson and Holt make the roster, one of them will play everyday and the other would presumably be the utility-infielder.

Over their careers, Holt has almost 100 more games at third base than Culberson, giving him an edge as the starter, but Culberson sports the better fielding percentage at the hot corner (.962).

Texas Rangers third base
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You could make the argument for platooning the two of them, but in that case you could also argue a platoon for any of the four of them.

Offensively, Brock Holt has had a better career with a .268/.337/.369 slash line with 23 long balls and 203 runs driven in.

Culberson’s slash line is nothing to sleep on though, either. His career line is .249/.293/.391 with the same 23 home runs and 111 RBIs.

One thing to note about Culberson’s career, as well, is that he has 217 less strikeouts than Holt.

Regardless of who wins the third base job, the Texas Rangers can’t go wrong with either option.

They both provide quality, major league experience that will undoubtedly benefit a young core of Texas Rangers that will be here for the long haul.

Even if Odor or Ibanez end up taking the starting role, having  either one of Charlie Culberson or Brock Holt back them up or in a platoon situation, is a win-win for the Texas Rangers.

Next. Kyle Gibson has a new pitch. dark

So far this spring, Charlie Culberson has set the standard with a perfect day at the plate, but there is a lot of baseball to be played and anything can happen during the next three weeks.

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