Odor has missed much of the still-young season with a hamstring injury. The 24-year-old is still looking to get back on track after a miserable 2017 campaign. It’s promising, at least, that he showed much-improved plate discipline (seven strikeouts and four walks) in his 41 plate appearances, though he wasn’t delivering much of his trademark power.
Clearly, it’s too soon to read much into that brief showing. Odor’s struggles in the on-base department are not new. Even when he swatted 33 home runs with an above-average overall batting output in 2016, he sported a sub-.300 OBP. But he reached base at a piddling .252 rate last year, which left him as one of the league’s least-useful regular hitters despite the fact that he put the ball over the fence thirty times.
Texas has plenty riding on the outcome. He’s owed $43.5MM from 2019 through 2022 (including the buyout on a 2023 option) under the extension he signed before the 2017 seas. Odor only recently turned 24 and the club is not contending at the moment, so there’s ample reason to exercise patience and allow him to continue getting reps.
As for Nunez, also 24, he was claimed last month off waivers from the Athletics. He has received brief MLB time in each of the past three seasons. In total, Nunez carries only a .167/.222/.273 slash in 72 plate appearances at the game’s highest level, though he was productive (.249/.319/.518 with 32 home runs) last year at Triple-A.