Rangers top shortstop prospect is making case for Texas youth movement 2.0

Spring Training
Spring Training / Ben Ludeman/Texas Rangers/GettyImages

In a lot of ways, the Texas Rangers' youth movement has already started. Both Evan Carter and Josh Jung have quickly established themselves as important parts of the teams big league roster.

Meanwhile, Justin Foscue and especially Wyatt Langford seem to be right on the verge of forcing their way into the majors as well given their strong springs. For most teams, that would be more than enough young talent.

However, the Rangers' system seems primed to provide even more than that. Jack Leiter is a top-end pitching talent that needs to bounce back from a tough couple of years, and both Brock Porter and Kumar Rocker could make a difference on the mound in a couple of years as. However, the prospect that has made the most noise this spring has been shortstop Sebastian Walcott.

Sebastian Walcott could be on the fast track to stardom with the Texas Rangers

Walcott is currently ranked as the Rangers' third-best prospect by MLB Pipeline thanks to his innate ability to crush baseballs. It is that raw power and quick bat that convinced the Rangers to give him a $3.2 million signing bonus in January 2023. At just 17 years old, Walcott has already been posting elite exit velocities in the minors, although his hit tool thus far has left something to be desired.

Given his struggles with swing and miss in his first look at pro ball last season, you would think that Walcott is, at best, a long ways away from contributing in the big leagues, especially with Corey Seager under contract and playing short. However, the word from camp is that Walcott has been more than holding his own against pitchers with a lot more experience than him and has impressed basically anyone that's watched him.

There are some details to work out with Walcott. At 6-foot-4 with a big frame, there is a very decent chance that he outgrows shortstop over time. However, the Rangers don't need a shortstop anytime soon with Seager around through at least 2031. As long as Walcott improves his approach and bat-to-ball skills, that bat will play literally anywhere on the field.

Could it be several years before Walcott even sniffs a chance at making the big leagues? Absolutely. These young international free agents very often take time to develop the ability to utilize and apply their prodigious tools on a regular basis.

However, all of the indications right now are that Walcott is very, very close to breaking out in 2024, and if that happens, he could force the Rangers' hand sooner rather than later.

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