Welcome to our weekly series where 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?”
The last week of Rangers baseball has been bittersweet. They had, without a doubt, the series of the year when they swept the defending world champs in Houston, beating Justin Verlander and Dallas Keuchel in the process, then extended their win streak to four games in Arizona. Then, they traded people. Always a sad time when your team loses guys you’ve grown to like. Anyway, let’s move on to the good stuff.
Isiah Kiner-Falefa — The super utility man (he even catches) is swinging a hot bat as of late. In his last four games, he’s batting .429 with an eye-popping .929 slugging percentage, thanks to his double and two home runs making up half of his hits in that stretch. Kiner-Falefa has been one of the brightest spots to this entire season, and he’s earned his spot on the big club for the foreseeable future.
Robinson Chirinos — Speaking of guys who catch, the Rangers’ No. 1 back stop has been on a tear, and it’s somewhat remarkable he wasn’t dealt at the trade deadline Tuesday, though it seems the Rangers probably value him more than contending clubs would. He’s now 7-for-19 with two doubles and a homer in his last five games.
Jose Leclerc — The Rangers’ new closer has been solid all year, and he’s on a burner right now. In his last three games, he’s worked three innings and struck out three batters while allowing two hits and no runs. It’ll be interesting to see if they can get a dominant closer out of Leclerc and possibly ship him off at the deadline next year while the Rangers are still in rebuilding mode.
Bartolo Colon — Bart, Bart, Bart ... Big Sexy is struggling since getting off to a really strong start this year. Now, the 45-year-old looks 45 out there, and his last two starts have been indicative of his extended slump. To his credit, he’s eaten up innings in those starts, combining to work 12 innings in his two outings, but he’s allowed 11 runs — all earned — on 16 hits with two home runs.
Shin-Soo Choo — After his 52-game on-base streak came to an end just after the all-star break, Choo has been in a massive slide. In his last six games, the veteran outfielder is 5-for-27 (.185) with four runs scored, but he has made it kinda fun with a double, triple and two homers in his five hits while also leading the team in RBIs with seven in the last week. The most staggering part about this slump is that Choo has fanned 11 times and walked just twice in the span.