Hailed as one of the best hitting prospects in all of baseball once upon a time, first baseman Jake Bauers‘ time with the Cleveland Indians is nearing an end. Recently designated for assignment for an overall lack of production over the course of 160 major league games, one has to wonder if the Texas Rangers would have any interest in the former top 100 prospect.
After all, the team is having some pretty sweet results with the likes of Adolis Garcia, another seemingly failed prospect who simply needed a fresh start or two before finding their rhythm.
Here’s a bit of what MLB Trade Rumors had to say about Bauer’s looming waiver wire status:
"Today’s news could mark the end of Bauers’ star-crossed tenure in Cleveland. A top-100 prospect during his time in the Rays’ farm system, Bauers came to the Tribe as part of a major three-team swap involving the Rays and Mariners in December 2018. The deal brought Carlos Santana back to Cleveland as veteran reinforcement for the Indians’ lineup, and Bauers was supposed to be a young building block, though he hasn’t delivered on that promise.Over 160 games and 536 plate appearances with the Tribe, Bauers has hit only .218/.305/.352 with 14 home runs, delivering below replacement-level (-0.8 fWAR) production. This playing time came during the 2019 and 2021 seasons, as Bauers was at Cleveland’s alternate training site in 2020 but never received a call-up to the big league club. Bauers is out of options, so it’s possible another team might make a waiver claim on a player who is still only 25 and not that far removed from his prospect heyday."
Should the Texas Rangers put a waiver claim in on this former top 100 prospect?
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While Bauers’ career WAR of -0.7 is obviously nothing to get excited about, the Texas Rangers are the type of organization who might consider giving Bauers one final shot in the big leagues. They’re in no rush to win at the moment, and Bauers could benefit from some added development time in a low-stress environment.
Just a fun hypothetical to consider. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯