The Texas Rangers traded Nomar Mazara for a minor league outfielder two-years ago, but no one could have foreseen him would be this good.
As much as fans would love it, Chuck Norris is not coming to do earth-downs or kill two-stones with one bird for the Texas Rangers.
Rather, the Rangers have found their own Walker. And he might be just as good.
Steele Walker is a left-handed outfielder who played his college ball alongside Kyler Murray for the Oklahoma Sooners, not as a big time movie star or being a Bowflex spokesperson.
Over three seasons in the Sooners’ outfield, Walker dominated Big-12 pitching.
As a freshman in 2016, Walker hit .290 over 57 games played. He had 17 doubles, three homers and drove-in 32, while slugging .414 and getting on-base at a .352 clip.
That’s pretty good, but he only got better during his sophomore and junior seasons.
Steele Walker is a better player than the Texas Rangers ever could’ve imagined.
During his sophomore season, he hit .333/.413/.541 and had a 1.000 fielding percentage. His power numbers also jumped up in 222 at-bats, crushing eight homers, 16 doubles and three triples, while driving in 51.
More from Nolan Writin'
- Framework for a potential Max Fried trade to the Texas Rangers
- Early 2023 MLB mock draft has Texas Rangers selecting an Ohtani-lite
- 3 Texas Rangers outfield trade targets not named Bryan Reynolds
- Did Jacob deGrom really mean what he said at his Texas Rangers press conference?
- Where do Texas Rangers prospects Jack Leiter and Kumar Rocker stand after the DeGrom signing?
In his final season with the Sooners, Walker hit a cool .352/.404/.522 with 13 homers, 14 doubles and one triple over 54 games played. He drove in 53 in 216 at-bats, but also made his presence known on the bases, stealing seven bases and walking 31 times.
He was one of nine Sooners selected in the 2018 MLB Amateur Draft, including Kyler Murray, and was named a NCBWA District 6 Player of the Year.
His domination of college-aged pitching didn’t stop there, but continued and exceeded expectations in his first season in the minor leagues.
In 2019, Walker hit .284/.361/.451 over 120 games between two different levels.
He hit 10 long balls, five triples and 36 doubles, while driving in 62, walking 50 times and stealing 13 bags.
He was traded to the Texas Rangers on December 10, 2019 for Nomar Mazara, but has yet to play a game in the Rangers’ minor league system.
However, he was at the alternate site during the 2020 season and has been invited to 2021 big league spring training.
He has played in three of the Rangers’ Cactus League games, mostly as a defensive replacement, but got his first start on Wednesday against the Angels.
He has had four at-bats in big league camp, going 1-4 with an opposite field home run against the Angels.
Let me tell you, Steele Walker hits BOMBS.
One of the sweetest swings that I have ever seen from a Rangers’ prospect, Walker will look to make it to Arlington sometime soon.
He also has one of the biggest personalities in the Texas farm system, compared to many of the quieter personalities of other top prospects.
Check out this video of Walker from White Sox camp.
Steele Walker will be one of the more interesting players to watch throughout spring training and into the regular season.
He has a fiery personality, much like Carlos Gomez, and a great fashion-sense, but more importantly, is an incredible left-handed hitter that the Rangers could build around in the near future.
The Prosper, TX native compares very similarly to Joc Pederson, but needs to see both right- and left-handed pitching to maximize his full potential.
If Walker plays well at Frisco and possibly Round Rock this season, he could easily find himself playing the Globe Life Field outfield sometime this year.
While we’re on the topic of Walker, Texas Ranger, drop some of your favorite Chuck Norris jokes In the comments below or on our social media handles, @NolanWritinFS and @PTylerHenderson!