Leody Taveras Texas Rangers

Age: 23 (September 08, 1998) | 6' 1" | 170lbs. OF-33 CF-33
TEX A 2017 134 522 73 130 47 92 20 7 8 50 20 6 .249 .312 .360 8 16 .287 n/a
TEX A+ 2018 132 521 65 128 51 96 16 7 5 48 19 11 .246 .312 .332 9 17 .292 n/a
TEX A+ 2019 66 255 44 75 31 62 7 4 2 25 21 5 .294 .368 .376 11 22 .378 n/a
TEX AA 2019 65 264 32 70 23 60 12 4 3 31 11 8 .265 .320 .375 8 21 .327 n/a
TEX AL 2020 33 119 20 27 14 43 6 1 4 6 8 0 .227 .308 .395 10 33 .319 38/29/33 14 13
TEX AAA 2021 87 322 57 79 49 95 19 2 17 55 13 5 .245 .343 .475 13 25 .287 n/a
TEX AL 2021 49 174 14 28 9 60 6 2 3 9 10 1 .161 .207 .270 5 33 .225 52/16/32 2 1
Career 2yrs 82 293 34 55 23 103 12 3 7 15 18 1 .188 .249 .321 7 33 .262 n/a
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Yeah ... add that White was actually WORSE than Leody's .703 OPS last year in the majors (.460) ... and that he had a .755 OPS at AAA in 2019 ... and that he's riding a .411 BABIP in Spring ... 

I assume the Rangers are intelligent enough to recognize smoke and mirrors when they see them.

Only reason I see Taveras getting sent down is if the Rangers feel 100 AB at AAA would jump start his hitting.  But as you note ... defense.  

Phil Ponebshek Texpope
Mar 22

A note at Jeff Zimmerman's Mining The News at FanGraphs on 3/18 that only one of Leody or Eli White will make the Opening Day roster. Zimmerman goes on to say that White has a 1.086 OPS and Taveras ha a .598 OPS.

I certainly wouldn't completely discount this note but below are a few reasons I'm skeptical it won't.happen.

1) This is exhibit A as to why ST stats are misleading. Three days later, the OPS gap has shrunk to .899 to .701. The stat I'm looking at with Leody isn't OPS but BB/SO and SO/PA. His lack of walks concerns me, but he isn't striking out at an alarming rate (7 Ks in 32 PA). 13+ strikeouts or so is where I'd be sounding the alarm bells.

2) If Leody doesn't make the team, the Rangers outfield defense is going to be...rough. They would presumably have White in CF flanked by David Dahl and Joey Gallo in park that seems to have a pretty big outfield. Scouts have noted that while White can play center he'd be a stretch there defensively. Regardless of how much Leody does or doesn't hit, he's already a Gold Glove candidate in center and that does matter in the real life version of the game.

3) I'm not clear who makes the roster if Leody or White is demoted. 

Anyway, the prices up there might be somewhat aggressive if you believe Leody is at risk of being demoted.

Mike Gianella MikeG
Mar 22
Percentiles: Barrel 39 EV 52 xBA 26 xSLG 23 SO 7 BB 67 speed 96
Alex Patton Alex
Mar 15

Very poor start to ST, but its not like Texas is brimming with alternatives for CF.

John Thomas Roll2
Mar 13

I could see Taveras heading back to the minors to start the season now that the Rangers have acquired Khris Davis to presumably take their DH spot, pushing Calhoun into the OF with Gallo and Dahl. 

Scott Shea SJS
Feb 13

I suspect the Rangers are going to take Keith Law's advice. And if they do, he's going to cost.

44. Leody Taveras, CF, Texas, Age: 22

Taveras played 33 games in the majors last year and just barely
sneaks under the wire to retain his rookie eligibility for one more
year. He showed flashes of how good a defender he is in center, making
more out-of-zone plays in center than many highly regarded defenders who
played more innings there in 2020, including Kevin Kiermaier, Harrison
Bader and George Springer, thanks to his top-end sprint speed in the
96th percentile. At the plate, he struck out far more often than he ever
has in the minors, with breaking stuff his bugbear, but did make harder
contact than expected when he did put the ball in play. He’ll play all
of 2021 at age 22, and in a non-pandemic year probably wouldn’t have
seen the majors last season. Right now the Rangers should just hand him
the everyday centerfield job, where he’s going to be a 70 defender, and
hope that his longstanding ability to put the ball in play, with
strikeout rates down around 20 percent in the minors, comes back as he
gets used to major-league curveballs and sliders.

Alex Patton Alex
Feb 12

You know baseball's in trouble when BA starts talking about "both sides of the ball."

  1. 3. Leody Taveras | OF
    Leody Taveras
    Born: Sep 8, 1998 
    Bats: B Throws: R 
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 195 
    Drafted: Dominican Republic, 2015 
    Signed By: Willy Espinal/Gil Kim/ Thad Levine. 

    Hitting: 50. Power: 40. Running: 70. Fielding: 60. Arm: 60. 

    TRACK RECORD: After zooming to short-season Spokane in his pro debut, Taveras began moving more methodically through the minors and spent a year and a half at high Class A before finishing 2019 at Double-A Frisco. Taveras’ offense had stagnated, so it was somewhat surprising to see him crack the Rangers’ Opening Day roster in 2020. He performed admirably for a 21-year-old with modest upper-level experience and spent the year as the Rangers’ primary center fielder.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Rangers officials credit Taveras for showing more exit velocity and lift in his swing in 2020, as well as the first double-digit walk rate of his career. He’s normally a disciplined hitter and struck out more than expected in the majors, but that was associated with him being more aggressive on pitches he believed he could drive. The goal is to find a happy medium and help him be an average hitter with double-digit home run power. Taveras is a plus-plus runner and finished in the 94th percentile for MLB Statcast’s sprint speed. Taveras uses that speed to be a plus defender in center field and boasts a plus arm.

    THE FUTURE: If Taveras’ bat continues to trend upward, he could be an impact player on both sides of the ball.

Alex Patton Alex
Jan 8

From the Baseball Forecaster:

Top Spd, 400+ AB (projected)

Leody Taveras 173

Luis Robert 171

Fernando Tatis 167

Trea Turner 165

Ahmed Rosario 161

Nick Madrigal 161

Adalberto Mondesi 161

The Forecaster's Speed Score is derived from equations for SB efficiency, SB frequency, triples rating and runs scored as a percentage of times on base. So the list here does not claim Taveras will steal more bases than Mondesi (the projections say Mondesi will swipe more than twice as many) but it does say Taveras has abundant speed.

How abundant?

The Speed Score Index is 100.

"Values more than 200  represent the Fleet of Feet Elie."

Alex Patton Alex
Dec 26 '20
Fangraphs: EV 88.9 HardHit 42% HR/FB 17% LD%+ 134 Pull 42% Cent 35% Oppo 23%
Alex Patton Alex
Dec 16 '20