The roster transformation continues. It was badly needed.
After struggling to hit .136 with the Rangers this season, then complaining about being sent down, Calhoun failed to take advantage of his time in Round Rock, hitting a paltry .221 with an uninspiring .267 on-base percentage. The Rangers finally released had enough. Sunday, they designated Calhoun for assignment. That removes him from the 40-man roster. Now, they have ten days to trade him or release him.
Texas sent down Andy Ibañez yesterday as well. He had the starting third base job fall into his lap when the Rangers traded Kiner-Falefa and when Josh Jung was lost for the year. After being a pleasant surprise last season, the Cuban-born Ibañez failed to take advantage of his golden opportunity, struggling to a .161 batting average, with just one home run and nine runs batted in.
With failure comes opportunity. Ezequiel Duran and Steele Walker made their major league debuts over the weekend. Duran on Saturday, Walker Sunday.
The twenty-three-year-old Duran was called up to replace the injured Josh Smith, who was having a magical first week in the major leagues before he hurt his shoulder on a play at third. After going 0-for-3 in his first game, Duran got his first major league hit yesterday in the second inning, then hit his for big league home run in the seventh, giving the Rangers a 3-2 lead.
Steel Walker went 0-for-4 in his major league debut on Sunday. The left fielder came to the Rangers in the Nomar Mazara deal with the White Sox. Coincidentally, Mazara was called up with the Padres this weekend.
This new infusion of talent brings optimism and energy. And hope that little by little the Rangers are clearing out the deadwood that has clogged the roster far too long.