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Brent Lillibridge, 2B/3B
I've been raving about Lillibridge all spring, and that will continue here. He's done everything that has been asked of him and then some. He's only played in 12 of the 18 games so far, but he's hitting a respectable .280 in 25 plate appearances.
The former Washington Husky has been a pesky player his entire major league career. He's a true utility player who has all the tools needed to play an effective role with the Rangers. His problem: He doesn't have as strong of an arm from short as Adam Rosales does, and he has very limited experience playing third.
Still, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News does project Lillibridge to be on the Rangers' 25-man roster.
Grant says that Lillibridge has more versatility than Rosales as a defender, as he can play the outfield as well. Lillibridge has had a solid spring, and at this point, I'd say he's earned a spot on this team.
Kevin Kouzmanoff, 3B
This is another guy who has done everything asked of him and absolutely deserves a roster spot. Kouzmanoff has hit very well this spring—a .385/.467/.538 line in 39 at-bats. He only has four walks, but he has just six strikeouts.
I don't know if anyone expected to him to handle the bat that well this spring. Defensively, he's holding his own as a backup at third, which would be his primary role on the 25-man if he made it, according to Grant.
With Mitch Moreland's recent injury from tightness in his left oblique muscle, Grant now has Kouzmanoff on the 25-man roster. According to Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News, Moreland could miss a few games in the opening week of the season. This could be Kouzmanoff's ticket to March 31.
Robinson Chirinos, C/1B
Of all the guys in play for an Opening Day roster spot, perhaps none deserve it more than Chirinos. He's hitting .455 with a homer and five RBI in 22 trips to the plate. When juxtaposed with JP Arencibia's anemic numbers—a .189/.211/.351 line—Chirinos' value skyrockets.
Grant has Chirinos off the Opening Day roster, citing a lack of depth as the main reason why. He thinks it makes more sense for Texas to have him in the minors as the first catcher to call up if needed.
Michael Choice, RF/DH
Choice has had a magical spring. He's hitting .381 with a two homers and seven RBI in 42 at-bats. But those numbers—particularly the power numbers—don't quite do justice to how well he has actually done. He's nailing the ball with authority and is making consistent contact, having struck out just eight times.
Choice is the fourth outfielder on Grant's projected Opening Day roster. He needed to have a dynamite spring to even be considered, and he has definitely done so.
Assuming he doesn't fall off the face of the Earth over the next 11 days, he should be taking the field on March 31.
As of right now, Grant expects Choice to be the team's primary right-handed DH.
Jim Adduci, LF
According to Grant, Adduci is not in the picture right now. That's a shame—he's a hard-working player who has performed well this spring on all fronts. He's hitting .389 in 36 at-bats and has only been fanned four times.
His grim reality: There are just better players than him.
With the rapid emergence of Choice and the presence of the younger and more talented Engel Beltre, Adduci is likely return to his role as an injury call-up. He may never be anything more than that in Texas. You have to feel for a guy like that.
Nick Williams, OF/Ronald Guzman, 1B
What a start for these guys. A combined four home runs and seven RBI in just 10 at-bats. Neither of them has a realistic shot at the Opening Day roster, but boy are the two something to get excited about over the next couple years.