By Michael Bier
Source – NY Daily News
Despite losing 10-3 against the Mariners on Tuesday night, Rangers fans still had something to cheer about.
Willie Calhoun, the headline of the Rangers return package in the Yu Darvish deal, made his major league debut in the blowout. Willie notched his first major league hit with an RBI single in second inning, while also making two outstanding plays in left field.
Calhoun was one of three notable Rangers prospects who didn’t get called up as part of the September roster expansion, but was told by the Rangers to stay fresh just in case they needed him. Turns out, his services were required sooner than expected. On Sunday against the Yankees, Carlos Gomez left the game early after spraining his ankle coming out of the box. With that, the Rangers needed another outfielder to split time with Ryan Rua and Drew Robinson.
Calhoun didn’t get the call until late Monday night, as he was part of three Rangers moves that took place. One being the activation of Adrian Beltre and Keone Kela, and the other being the release of Tyson Ross to make room for Willie on the 40 man roster. Once notified, Calhoun let Rangers fans know of his call up via twitter with this tweet:
Calhoun invited his parents down to Texas to watch his major league debut, and when asked about his son’s first hit, Willie’s dad said, “I was very happy for him. To get that hit out of the way so he wouldn’t be nervous about it.”
After the game, Willie talked to reporters about his major league debut.
“I had a lot of fun out there. A lot of excitement and adrenaline running through me. I’m happy to be here and I couldn’t ask for anything better.”
Willie also touched on having his parents there to witness his debut.
“It was amazing, because this has been a dream of mine ever since I was a little kid. This has been something I’ve been playing for my entire life, so for them to be there is huge for me.”
Willie will most likely stay on the 40 man roster all throughout the rest of the season, but is ineligible for postseason play, as he didn’t play for the club on, or prior to September 1st.
If you’d like to learn more about Willie Calhoun, check out this article I wrote on shortly after he was traded for: https://thedriveonline.net/2017/08/19/getting-to-know-willie-calhoun/