By: Joel Collins
Although he hasn’t fielded a ball since September 23, 2013, Jurickson Profar is ready for Spring Training in the middle of winter. Of course the Texas Rangers want to take it slow and with extreme caution with Profar. However, it is clear that the kid is ready to get back to playing baseball.
Texas is taking every precaution they can with Profar’s torn labrum that landed him on the disabled list for 2 seasons. Profar was the No. 1 prospect in all of baseball going in to 2013. He batted .231/.301/.343 with 7 homers and 28 RBIs through 94 career games before the injury. Profar will turn 23 in February.
Now it’s being rumored again that teams are inquiring about Profar…trying to get him at a cheap price. The Texas Rangers aren’t quite ready to give up on the young infielder, which makes a lot of sense considering how much time they have invested in his return. From the beginning, Jon Daniels made it clear that he had no intentions of parting with his top prospect. He didn’t sell him off to Arizona for Justin Upton or in any of the other rumored deals for starting pitching. Texas intends to see this kid play baseball in Arlington.
How many teams would like to be in the Rangers position with Andrus, Odor, Profar, and Gallo as the future of their infield? Could Profar man first base if he has throwing problems because of the injury? What if his arm is strong? Say Strong enough to play short or third? What if Gallo ends up playing first? Could either replace Moreland if he signs somewhere else after 2016? I got a feeling we’ll find out this season. You don’t want to just trade off the possible infield you could have with these guys. Why would you want to do that with no idea what Profar could be worth. I’m excited to see how the season will unfold.
If there’s a single player on this roster that should be traded it’s Prince Fielder. Regardless of how good of a season he might have in 2016, the Rangers have to do whatever they can to get him off of their hands. Shin-Soo Choo could be a relief as well. Both guys eat up too much salary and are aging quickly. We need to resign Beltre and let him DH and split time with Gallo or Profar at third as needed. If Moreland were to resign, then one of the two could see time in left field. Gallo played a little outfield last year so it would likely be him.
In my opinion, the Rangers can get a starter for Tolleson without giving up on the 2013 #1 Prospect in baseball. He has too much yet to prove. The right deal has to be out there. Personally, even Keone Kela has too much potential for me to think they would deal him. I do think that Daniels will get another starter for depth though.