If the Rangers harbor hopes of winning it all, they need to be able to compete with the elite teams. All indications point to the Cubs being elite again in 2017.
Yesterday we looked at first base, probably the weakest offensive position the Rangers had last year. Especially compared to the Cubs.
Today, second base.
This October was the coming out party for Cubs second baseman Javier Baez. He dominated at the plate in both the Division and Championship Series. He hit .375 in the DS and .318 in the CS.
In the World Series, his defense did the talking for him.
He performed well on the national stage. Unfortunately, Rougned Odor never got that chance to shine on the big stage. For all the accolades Baez received, and for good reason, Rougned Odor was better in 2016.
They are both great young players with incredible upside, but Odor is actually a year younger than Baez. He is a better hitter, too.
Home runs: Odor 33, Baez 14.
RBIs: Odor 89, Baez 59.
AVG: Baez .272, Odor .271.
OPS: Odor .798, Baez .737.
At the plate, they both have all the discipline of a frat boy at a kegger, swinging at any pitch thrown in the area code.
Baez is a much better defender, though. Odor, in fact, ranked at the very bottom of all second basemen in defense according to mlb.com stats. He has room for improvement.
Javier Baez became a household name this post-season. Rougned Odor had the much better season.
Odor is one of the rare success stories of the Rangers farm system. He should be a fixture at second for the Rangers for a few years to come.
At second, the edge goes to the Rangers and Odor.