Potential Target: Ben Zobrist | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Potential Target: Ben Zobrist

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    NEWSLETTERS

    AP
    Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Ben Zobrist throws out New York Yankees' Robinson Cano at first base.

    The Rangers' top winter priority is upgrading its starting pitching but they're also going to be looking for a bat.

    Target: Ben Zobrist, OF/2B/SS

    2014 stats: .272 batting average, .354 on-base percentage, .749 OPS, 34 doubles, 10 home runs, 52 RBIs

    Zobrist has been a longtime favorite of yours truly. He's a versatile defender and an underrated hitter that will always battle and give quality at-bats. He's batted at least .270 in each of the past three seasons with Tampa Bay and while he was primarily a second baseman for the Rays last season, he also played more than 50 games in the outfield and a few games at shortstop.

    He's a be a great addition not only for his bat but also for that defensive versatility, as the Rangers are still searching for a corner outfielder and could also need a middle infielder in case Jurickson Profar is hurt again or Rougned Odor just suffers a massive sophomore slump, which wouldn't at all be surprising given his young age and the fact teams will have more of a book on him this season.

    He has a $7.5 million team option this year, and then is set to become a free agent after the 2015 season but he'd be a nice stop-gap, if nothing else, until guys like Joey Gallo and maybe even Nomar Mazara are ready to arrive in 2016.