Player Profile: Jurickson Profar

Player Profile: Jurickson Profar

Credit: Getty Images

Hank Conger #16 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Mike DiMuro home plate umpire #16 look on as Jurickson Profar #13 of the Texas Rangers hits at Rangers Ballpark on September 27, 2013 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Rick Yeatts/Getty Images)

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by EDDIE MIDDLEBROOK

WFAA Sports

Posted on January 25, 2014 at 12:33 PM

Updated Saturday, Jan 25 at 12:33 PM

2013 Stats: .234/.308/.336, 0.1rWAR in 85 games

Salary: $500,000 (Arbitration eligible in 2016, free agent in 2020)

Each week, we will look at key players on the Texas Rangers’ 25-man roster, and this time we look at young phenom Jurickson Profar.

Year in Review: In recent memory, only Yu Darvish has come to Arlington with as much expectations placed on him before his MLB career even began. Heading into the 2013 season, Profar was a near consensus No. 1 prospect in the MLB. Only a handful of players can live up to those expectations as the Trouts and Harpers of the world are extremely rare.

The kid is talented. Switch-hitting shortstops that flash multiple above-average tools are more precious than a Harry Styles autographed photo.

Clearly, the Rangers believe this as well, because:

a)     They didn’t trade him for pitching and/or brooding slugger in Miami.

b)     They believed it so much, to their detriment, he was misused in 2013.

Games by position: 31 games at 2B, 20 games at DH, 17 games at SS, 10 games at 3B and four games at LF. Asking a 20-year-old (no matter how talented) to play that many positions and so inconsistently, wreaks havoc on his development.

Career: The future is very bright for a kid that every scout, coach or player that spends time with him will tell you that he is mature well beyond his 20 years.

Recently, Dallas Morning News writer Gerry Fraley wrote about Profar’s stint in the Dominican League this winter. Former manager Manny Acta called Profar “the most impressive player down here, alongside Gregory Polanco.”

More from the article: Profar “showed his All-Star potential at the plate and defensively,” Acta said. “Plate discipline and hand-eye coordination were outstanding. … Mature beyond his age, but definitely needs to play every day for his own good.”

2014 season: Going into Spring Training, Profar is slotted to be the everyday second baseman. This move by the Rangers, which came as a result of the Kinsler/Fielder swap, will most likely benefit the team beyond 2014 as Profar begins to develop his skills at the MLB level.

As for this season? Oliver projections over at Fangraphs have Jurickson at 146 games, .252/.336/.385, 13 homeruns, 15 stolen bases and worth 3.2 wins. If Profar has that kind of season, the savvy baseball fan will be well pleased. In Elvis Andrus’s first full season with the Rangers as a 20-year-old (2009), he was worth 3.1 wins.

Keep the faith Rangers fans, the kid is special, but we might need to redefine what “special” is. Patience will be required and simply enjoy having an Andrus/Profar double-play combination for the next several years. It will be popcorn-worthy.

Eddie Middlebrook is a staff writer for Paranoid Fan, covering MLB and college football. Back in 2010, Eddie wrote for Fox Sports Southwest covering the Texas Rangers, Dallas Cowboys, Dallas Mavericks and the Big 12. In 2012, he began writing for Shutdown Inning where he eventually became Vice President of Media. You can email Eddie at eddie@paranoidfan.com or catch him on Twitter @emiddlebrook.

 

 

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