Texas Rangers’ Nathaniel Lowe: Defense
Nathaniel’s swing will continue to get better and develop as he enters his mid-to-late twenties, but his defense leaves a fair amount to be desired.
That’s not to say he was disappointing in any way at the corner in 2021. He finished first in the American League in first basemen putouts, double plays turned, and errors – but I like to chalk that up to him starting 148 games at first, good for second in the American League, and fourth in all of baseball. There’s a lot of potential for him with the glove, but those errors I mentioned are the glaring red flag.
Lowe is lucky enough to have a Gold Glove-winning shortstop in Isiah Kiner Falefa in his infield, and the Rangers are heavily circulated within the daunted “2022 Shortstop Sweepstakes” as names like Correa, Story, and Seager will all be hitting the market this winter. Nick Solak and Andy Ibañez both have shown considerable improvement with their gloves at second base as well, as Solak improved his Defensive Runs Saved and Outs Above Average numbers significantly after a short demotion to Round Rock.
Suffice to say, Lowe is going to be surrounded with infield talent in 2022. He’ll have players at every level that can elevate his defensive game, and it’s hard to have expected much more of him with the responsibility he was given last season. Three of his 11 defensive errors were throwing errors. There’s a lot of wiggle room for a 26-year-old who hasn’t entered his prime yet.