Comeback player of the year. 70 comments

Rougned Odor hits a game-deciding three-run homer in the pouring rain to power the Rangers to a 4-2 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.


Not even rain can cool off Rougned Odor.

What he has done this season has been miraculous. To go from where he was to where he is currently is truly remarkable.

It all starts with desire. Or maybe it starts with shame.

Odor had fallen about as far as anyone possibly could. His train wreck of a 2017 was spilling over into 2018, all caused by his total lack of discipline and unwillingness to change his approach. He even brazenly said last year that he would refuse to change his approach.

It was the approach of a solid .190 hitter with no power.

Then something happened. It’s been attributed to emulating Shin-Soo Choo and his intense preparation. It’s been attributed to finally asking for help.

But one other thing may have caused the dramatic turnaround in Roughed Odor. Unemployment.

The Rangers had two second basemen ready to step in: Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Jurickson Profar. And, in fact, they were just weeks away. After Odor’s awful start, then losing time to injury, it became pretty evident he was no longer needed in the lineup. The Rangers could lose just fine without him.

Look at the difference. When he went down with injury this season: .206 AVG, .300 OBP, .565 OBP, 0 HRs, 3 RBIs. Through May he was hitting .205 with just one home run.

Then it kicked in. Whether it was fear, shame, pride—whatever—and whether it was a teammate, a batting coach—whoever—Rougned Odor has authored one of the most incredible comeback story in a long time.

In the first half of the season: .239 average, .319 OBP, .697 OPS, 6 home runs, 24 runs driven in.

So far in the second half: .360, .427, 1.120, 9 HRs, 30 RBIs.

Since the All-Star break he hasn’t given a single pitcher a break. With his game-deciding three-run home run last night, Odor now has batted in 23 runs in August, the most of any major leaguer.

Those numbers aren’t just All-Star worthy, they are elite player worthy. It’s as if the Rangers traded Odor for Jose Altuve.


Bartolo Colon (7-10, 5.19) vs. Mike Fiers (8-6, 3.38)
Game time: 9:05

How the Rangers hit against Fiers.
How the Athletics hit against Colon.