The Rangers made their first significant trade deadline move Sunday, sending catcher Jonathan Lucroy to the Colorado Rockies for a player to be named later.
Lucroy, on the last year of his contract, has long been rumored to be on the way out if the Rangers dropped out of contention -- especially with solid play from the much less expensive Robinson Chirinos.
Lucroy’s batting average has dipped 50 points from last season and he had just four home runs in 77 games with Texas. To make matters worse, Lucroy has seen a decline in his defensive play, struggling to frame strikes for Rangers pitchers -- something that used to be a strong suit for the veteran catcher.
The Rockies (60-45) are in second place in a stout National League West division and in a battle for the top NL Wild Card spot.
While the Rockies rank third in the majors in both batting average and runs scored, their catchers have combined for just a .231 batting average, three homers and 32 RBIs on the season.
Earlier Sunday, the Rangers received infielder Tyler Smith on a waiver claim from Seattle and optioned him to Triple-A Round Rock.
The Major League Baseball trade deadline is 3 p.m. Central Time Monday.