After another solid outing, the Texas Rangers dubbed Kohei Arihara with the Texas-themed cowboy hat, solidifying his spot within the Lone Star State.
Kohei Arihara came to the Texas Rangers looking to find success in Major League Baseball, and has done so through three starts.
After his last outing against the Tampa Bay Rays, he was awarded the prestigious Texas-themed cowboy hat from his fellow teammates, and he looks good in it!
Even though he’s wearing it backwards, it’s a good sign that he is buying into the culture of the Lone Star State and the Texas Rangers.
The partnership between the Texas Rangers and Arihara’s camp was become quite a nice pairing so far this season, and for the Rangers, relatively cheap.
Arihara is 1-1 this season, while sporting a 3.07 ERA over 14.2 innings pitched.
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His ERA is inflated from his first start at Kansas City, which was an offensive explosion that no one saw coming, but has been solid overall.
He went five innings against the Royals that day, only allowing three runs on six hits, while plunking one and giving up one long ball.
However, it was the bullpen that blew that game out of reach for the Rangers.
On the night of April 9th, the Texas Rangers surrendered the first no-hitter in Padres’ history to Joe Musgrove.
Arihara happened to be the opposing pitcher that night and limped through four innings, allowing three runs (two earned) on five hits while walking one and striking out one.
Even though the results weren’t what he expected, he consistently threw strikes. Over both starts, Arihara has thrown a collective 145 pitches with 89 being for strikes. That’s just over 61% of his pitches landing in the zone.
Kohei Arihara is transitioning nicely to the Texas Rangers and MLB in general.
During his most recent start against the Rays, Arihara picked up his first Major League win and got the Rangers on a two-game winning streak.
Over his 5.2 scoreless innings against the defending American League Champions, Arihara only allowed three hits and struck out five.
Once again, Arihara filled the strike zone and dotted corners, having that filthy splitter of his on display all night long.
That split-finger fastball not only helped him pick up his first win against the Rays, but has also placed him in the top-15 across Major League Baseball in average launch angle.
According to Baseball Savant, Kohei is allowing an average launch angle of 6.5 degrees this season, putting him in between Corey Kluber and Pablo Lopez. Arihara has only allowed one homer this season.
All-in-all, Kohei Arihara has been quite the steal for the Texas Rangers this season, especially in the midst of a rebuild. Assuming he continues to have similar results this season, he could make for a nice trade piece at the deadline or could front the rotation next season.
However and wherever Arihara ends up, he is fulfilling the dream of having big league success and he’s doing it well in a Texas Rangers’ uniform.
Now, we just have to get that cowboy hat on the right way.