Calhoun, 22, hasn’t played for a week, as his minor-league team, the Triple-A Round Rock Express, wrapped up its season on September 4. But with Adrian Beltre and Carlos Gomez suffering serious injuries, Rougned Odor sustaining an ankle injury that may require him to take a day off or two later this month, and Mike Napoli dealing with lower-body stiffness, the Rangers obviously had second thoughts about giving Calhoun a September call-up.
Calhoun, who is rated as the Rangers’ No. 2 prospect by MLB Pipeline, was acquired from the Dodgers in the shocking last-minute deadline deal that sent Yu Darvish to Los Angeles. In 534 plate appearances between Round Rock and the Dodgers’ Triple-A affiliate in Oklahoma City this season, Calhoun is slashing .300/.355/.572 with 31 homers.
Calhoun, who was exclusively a second baseman before this season, has played mostly in left field while receiving occasional time at second since joining Round Rock. His long-term future in Texas appears to be in left field, as the Rangers could probably stand to upgrade over Delino Deshields but may need the third-year outfielder to switch to center next spring if Gomez leaves as a free agent this offseason.
While Calhoun’s defensive future has long been in question, his raw power is a sure thing, and with a lineup that already includes a trio of affordable young sluggers in Odor, Joey Gallo, and Nomar Mazara, the Rangers could have the most powerful lineup in the majors for years to come.