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Rumors: Texas Rangers in as Shin-Soo Choo talks reach "critical stage"

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Ken Rosenthal says the Shin-Soo Choo talks may be reaching the "critical stage," and the Rangers are in on him

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Shin Soo Choo rumor: The Texas Rangers and at least one other team are in on Shin-Soo Choo as the talks appear to be reaching the "critical stage," according to a Ken Rosenthal tweet.

Choo has long been thought to be the Rangers' top offseason free agent target, as he would fill a corner outfield or DH spot that the team is seeking to address, as well as get the club a high-OBP player, which Jon Daniels indicates has been a priority.

Choo was playing out of place as a center fielder for Cincinnati last season, and his defensive numbers in center were poor, but he's viewed as a quality right fielder in the field with a terrific arm, which would allow the Rangers to slide Alex Rios to left field.

Choo has a career .288/.389/.465 slash line, and has stolen at least 20 bases in four of the last five seasons.  He doesn't have huge power, but he's average 20 homers per 162 games over his career.

The issue with Choo is that he turns 32 next season, and is reportedly seeking a seven year deal, which means he would be 38 when his deal runs out.  I don't think you want to be paying Shin-Soo Choo $20 million per year plus for his age 35-37 seasons.

Most watchers were of the belief that Choo wouldn't sign until after the Winter Meetings, but if Rosenthal is correct, we could see the market move quickly with him.

More on this as it becomes available...