ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) The Texas Rangers want struggling second baseman Rougned Odor to rediscover his batting stroke in the minor leagues.
Odor, hitting .144 with 25 strikeouts in 90 at-bats this season, was optioned to Triple-A Round Rock on Monday.
”We felt it was time for him to go down and get back to being the type of player that actually got him here,” manager Jeff Banister said. ”That gritty, gutsy, blue-collar player that was a tough at-bat, played routine defense, a guy that typically on any given night played like his hair was on fire.”
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Odor was the youngest player in the majors at 20 years old when he made his major league debut last May. He hit .259 while playing 114 games in 2014, and Banister said the team expects him to ”be part of the winning formula here in Arlington.”
Texas purchased the contract of infielder Thomas Field from Round Rock. Field was listed in the starting lineup Monday night against Kansas City hitting eighth and playing second base.
Field hit .298 with five homers and 13 RBIs in 29 games at Round Rock. The Texas native played in 33 previous major league games, in 2011 and 2012 with Colorado, and 2013 with the Los Angeles Angels.
Odor never got on track this season and recently was benched. He had only seven hits in his last 58 at-bats and started just one of the past five games on the Rangers’ last road trip.
”My message to him was, take this as a time to go down and reconnect yourself with the guy that got you here,” Banister said.
By going to Round Rock, Odor will get to play regularly as opposed to being an extra player for the Rangers.
”I told him, `Don’t take this the wrong way,”’ shortstop Elvis Andrus said. ”`Take this as an opportunity to go to Triple-A and work … and establish yourself again.”’
Odor started 25 of the Rangers’ first 31 games at second base, and utility infielder Adam Rosales started the other six. Delino DeShields, who was in left field Monday night, can also play second base.