As the infamous dog days of Texas summer come to a close the Texas Rangers will be looking to cut back on the number of pitchers they use for the remainder of the season.
Texas CEO and President Nolan Ryan (who happens to be the only man wearing a Ranger cap in the Hall of Fame) discussed the team's operations concerning top prospect Jurickson Profar. The plan is to return to a more traditional four-man bench by reverting back to 12 pitchers, as Texas is just starting to recover from the abnormal injury bug that plagued the roster in July.
Talking to Randy Galloway on ESPN Dallas 103.3 Ryan said, "There has been some discussion about that. Will he be a September call up, will he be prior to that? I couldn't say, but do I think at some point in time he'll be here this year? I would say there's a reasonable chance of that happening." Galloway pressed on, asking Ryan how he felt about calling up a prospect like Profar if he's not going to be playing every day.
"We find that being in the Major League environment can be beneficial to them and they might be overwhelmed," Ryan said. "We do it in the bullpen where we're not putting them right into the rotation and trying not to overload them."
Profar is the 19-year old phenom shortstop at Double-A Frisco that Texas has been grooming as their future franchise player. His 2-3 performance with a home run at the All-Star Weekend Futures Game this year caught the attention of many who have been saying this kid might be ready.
Texas recently balked on two separate deals with Milwaukee and Miami involving Zack Greinke and Josh Johnson, respectively-two trades that they could have pulled had General Manager Jon Daniels been willing to include Jurickson Profar in the deal. Three years into his professional career he was ranked the overall no. 4 prospect in all of baseball last April and has been touted as the Rangers' possible response to the instant development of the unbelievable Mike Trout.
Jon Daniels recently called up their no. 2 prospect, third baseman Mike Olt, to spot for Adrian Beltre and platoon with Michael Young and Mitch Moreland at first base. Olt is 5 years older than Profar and plays a position that Texas has locked up until 2016, when Beltre's contract expires. Profar on the other hand seems to be an interesting part of the plans for Texas.
A result of the Rangers' enviable embarrassment of talent riches, if Nolan Ryan and Jon Daniels decide not to re-sign Josh Hamilton this winter to the superstar contract he is rumored to be expecting then Ian Kinsler will likely be moved to the outfield; with Profar either playing full-time second base or shortstop. In this scenario Elvis Andrus is more than likely retained beyond 2014, when his own contract expires. However, if Texas does re-sign Josh Hamilton then Elvis Andrus might be allowed to walk to the Yankees or Red Sox, or whichever team would drool to overpay for him. Considering the fact that his agent is Scott Boras it is certainly probable.
With Texas experiencing a late-summer resurgence that has them 8 games ahead of the Los Angeles Angels, they are sitting in a fairly comfortable position as they don't necessarily have to call up Profar. But, he could definitely use the experience of a playoff run.
Either way, if scouting reports from all across the league are correct (and they usually are)... and if Nolan Ryan and Jon Daniels are correct (and they usually are, too) then Texas might have their very own superstar-in-the-making.
And he might be just around the corner.