Will Venable is a free agent this winter and it's highly unlikely he'll be a part of the Texas Rangers in 2016, but Venable is a pretty nice player and now he's a member of the Rangers for a stretch run after they acquired him from the San Diego Padres on Tuesday evening.
Venable was acquired for Low-A catcher Marcus Greene and a player to be named later in a post-waiver move, and it's pretty surprising he made it to the Rangers.
Venable is a nice piece for the Rangers to add, even though it was a bit surprising to see them go get a left-handed bat when they still need right-handed bats (and might still get one). So why would they get him? Well, it's pretty simple. He can play center field, and do it pretty well.
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Sure, Delino DeShields is the starting center fielder for this club, but he hits right-handed. DeShields has earned the right to be more than a platoon option, and he'll remain the starter in center, but Leonys Martin is trying to play through a cracked hamate bone and won't be an option in Arlington anymore, and Josh Hamilton shouldn't play in center given his fragility. Hamilton will miss his fourth straight game on Wednesday with a sore knee and also is no lock to play left field, which Venable can also do.
So who is Will Venable? Well, he's batting .258/.318/.378 with 10 doubles, three triples and six homers to go with 30 RBIs and 11 stolen bases in 98 games this year. He's no star, but he's going to provide some great depth as the Rangers buckle down and go for it this year, which is something we never could've seen them doing a couple of months ago.