On Tuesday the Texas Rangers sent outfielder Craig Gentry and reliever Josh Lindblom to the Oakland Athletics for outfielder Michael Choice and prospect infielder Chris Bostick.
Choice, 24, is an Arlington Texas native who attended high school in Mansfield and later played at the University of Texas in Arlington. Last season he was ranked as the number two prospect in the A’s organization by Baseball Prospectus. He’s a power hitting outfielder who could hit thirty home runs a year but will also hit below average (around .250) and strike out a lot. While I don’t see him as a starter next season I do see him as an upgrade over Gentry as the fourth outfielder. And Texas has him until 2020.
Chris Bostick, 20, is a 2B/SS prospect who has yet to play above A-ball. He has a career slash line of .282/.352/.437 and adds to the surplus of infielders that the Rangers have in the minors including such players as Rougned Odor and Luis Sardinas. I could see Bostick being flipped to another team or being insurance if Odor or Sardinas are moved. With Elvis Andrus and Jurickson Profar manning the middle infield at the big league level, and both being relatively young, Texas isn’t too worried about moving any prospects up.
Gentry, 30, was a fan favorite especially with the women who loved his good looks. His looks and speed caused local personality Michael Gruber to dub him “Kitten Face”, a name that even Gentry himself accepted. As a player I liked him. His defense and ability to sometimes score from first on a single were a great asset but his bat kept him from being an everyday player.
Josh Lindblom, 26, had appeared in 101 games between 2011 and 2012 when he pitched for the Dodgers and Phillies. In the 2012 offseason he was dealt to Texas from Philadelphia in return for Michael Young. He never really had a spot in the Texas bullpen and only appeared in eight games in 2013.
Overall this trade looks to be tilted in Texas’ favor at least when you look at the return. Now if Rangers’ G.M. Jon Daniels could land free agent outfielder Shin-Soo Choo then I will be one happy man. That would give Texas a starting outfield of Alex Rios, Leonys Martin and Choo with Choice and Engel Beltre on the bench.
Until next time, I’ll see you in the cheap seats!
James Holland is a lifelong fan of baseball and his hometown Texas Rangers. He also writes for shutdowninning.com and can be found on Twitter @SDIJamesHolland.