NRIs with the best chance to make the Texas Rangers Opening Day roster - No. 3. Kyle Cody
The final player is Kyle Cody. He really made a splash in 2020. He was brought up in 2020 and in September made five starts and didn't allow more than one run in any of those starts. He had issues with his command as he did walk 13 batters in that time. Overall though he was expected to contribute to the Rangers team going forward. He was 26, a homegrown pitcher, and had the ability to start or pitch in the bullpen. He came back in 2021 and made the team out of camp and was pitching in the bullpen in April. He then was placed on the injured list late in April with a shoulder injury. He ended up missing the rest of 2021 and most of 2022. He did come back late last season. He pitched for Triple-A Round Rock. He made 12 appearances for Round Rock. He mostly pitched out of the bullpen going 19.2 innings, he struck out 21 and walked five in that time.
Cody comes to camp this season fully healthy. The Rangers do have spots in the bullpen if he can pitch well. He features a 4-seam fastball that he throws at 95 mph and he then throws a slider that works as an offspeed pitch. The slider registers at 83 mph. It keeps hitters off-balance and forces them to not be sitting on the same velocity. This allows him to be effective against both right-handers and left-handers. Cody is in a similar position that Brock Burke was in prior to 2022.
Burke missed all of 2020 and most of 2021. He came back in 2021 and spent the end of that season pitching in the minors. He then was healthy and came to camp and earned a spot on the roster. Cody could be that guy for the 2023 team. He is someone to watch in games next month. He will be given time to see what he has, if he is healthy, and if can he still get major league hitters out. If he doesn't make the team out of camp there is a good shot he is one of the first call-ups in the month of April.