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Texas Rangers Who’s Hot? Who’s Not? Week Three

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The Rangers’ bullpen is en fuego

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Texas Rangers Ray Carlin-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to a new weekly series, as we’ll take a look at a few Rangers who are on heaters and more who are ice cold in something we’ll call “Who’s Hot? Who’s Not?”

There have been some positive signs over the last week for the Rangers, but let’s be real, this season is still going to most likely be a brutal one to endure. The injuries have kept coming, but there is some sunshine in the black cloud of injury with Delino DeShields destroying his recovery timeline as he’s scheduled for a couple of rehab starts today and Friday in Frisco before possibly rejoining the Rangers this weekend, a good three weeks ahead of time.

Who’s Hot?

The Bullpen — Man. We said it a week ago, and it’s still holding true. This 2018 Rangers bullpen on the 2017 team could’ve made last year extremely different. Despite all the warts this club has, the bullpen has been a beacon of hope in a twisted, depressing baseball world. Seven relievers — Tony Barnette, Jesse Chavez, Chris Martin, Jake Diekman, Keone Kela, Alex Claudio and Kevin Jepsen — have combined over the last seven games to give up a total of one unearned run in a total of 15 innings. Claudio and Diekman each have a save and Keone Kela is 2-0, so go figure.

Matt Moore — Yes, we realize he was pitching against one of the worst lineups in baseball, but Moore looked like vintage Moore against the Rays when he allowed an unearned run on five hits and two walks while striking out six in seven innings. He did it by, you guessed it, all but eliminating the cutter! Keep it up.

Jurickson Profar — Just going along with the theme, it wasn’t but a day after Profar was on a nice little streak of solid play in Elvis Andrus’ extended absence before he was put in concussion protocol after taking a wicked spill in a collision at second base on Monday night. He’s yet to play since and would seem to be a candidate to hit the special 7-day concussion DL. But even still, in four games this week, Profar was 4-for-12 with two runs and two walks.

Who’s Not?

Shin-Soo Choo — After a pretty nice week, Choo has taken a nose dive. Yes, he has two home runs — in back-to-back games, no less, after going yard in three straight games earlier this year — but he has one other hit besides the two long balls. He does have three walks, but he also has fanned eight times in his last six games, which is very un-Choo-like.

Martin Perez — At this point, if you’re a Rangers fan, you almost have to hope Perez just wasn’t ready when he returned ahead of schedule from his bull-riding injury. Because otherwise, the once promising lefty has lost whatever good vibes he had going. In his last start, Perez allowed eight runs on 10 hits in four innings. Now, he’s 1-2 with a 13.14 ERA in his three starts this year. Yikes.