Isiah Kiner-Falefa…led the Mid-Pacific Institute Owls in Honolulu, Hawaii to the 2013 D1 Hawaii State Championship…batted .396 (21- 53) with 3 doubles, one triple, 9 RBI, and 16 runs scored as a senior…was a 2012 First-Team All-Interscholastic League of Honolulu selection as a junior, playing multiple infield positions…had committed to San Jose State…sister, Leka, plays volleyball at Chaminade.
Recalled from Round Rock (AAA) on 4/10 when Elvis Andrus suffered a fractured elbow, the rookie would spend the remainder of the season with Texas, including the final 3 months as the club's backup catcher…batted .261/.325/.357/.682 in 111 G/94 GS, making starts at
4 different positions…ranked among the A.L. rookie leaders in hits (T6th, 93), stolen bases (T6th, 7), OBP (7th, .325), doubles (T8th, 18), batting (9th, .261), walks (10th, 28), and total bases (10th, 127)…was 5th native of Hawaii to appear w/ TEX.
Hit .239 (43-180) over 1st 50 G through 6/9…batted .351/.376/.505/.881 over next 31 G from 6/10-8/8 to rise to .278…hit .203 (16-79) w/ 15 singles in final 30 G beg. 8/9 to drop from .278 to .261…averaged 6.39 PA/SO, 3rd-best among TEX regulars to only Jurickson Profar (6.75) and Elvis Andrus (6.48)…had team-high 3 G of 4+ hits in '18, T-most among ML rookies and most for Rangers rookie since George Wright in 1982…no other Ranger had more than one such game…hit .248 w/ .622 OPS vs. RH pitching, and .288 w/ .801 OPS against
LH pitching…had higher BA at home (.270) than on road (.253)…was 1-for-6 with 2 BB as PH, lone hit an RBI 2B on 9/15 at SD…batted .208 (20-96) with RISP.
Joined Jarrod Saltalamacchia (2008) as the only Texas catchers with 35+ starts in an age 23-or younger season since Ivan Rodriguez in 1995…had 94 GS at 3B (38), C (35), 2B (19), and SS (2)…24 of last 27 GS were at catcher (3 G at 3B)…marked most career starts at C in any pro season (previously 33 in minors in 2016)…threw out 7 of 24 att. basestealers (32.0%), matching the CS total for all other TEX backstops in 2018…started behind the plate on 6/20 at KC, the 1st catching appearance of his ML career…threw out Hunter Dozier at 2nd base on a steal attempt to end the game, 1st career CS…according to Elias Sports Bureau, he became 1st MLB player (since stat was universally tracked in 1951) to record a game-ending CS in 1st-ever game played at catcher.
Set career bests in nearly every offensive category, including 31 doubles to tie for the Texas League lead…also ranked among the TL leaders in hits (2nd, 148), stolen bases (T8th, 17), and total bases (T8th, 200)...was a mid-season AllStar in the TL for the 2nd straight year…saw action at second base, third base, shortstop, center field, and a career-high 33 games at catcher…hit .267/.338/.385/.723 over 1st 67 games and .311/.364/.394/.758 over final 62 contests…hit 1st HR as a pro on 4/8 vs. Springfield (331st pro game and 1,219th-career at-bat)
Appeared at 6 different defensive positions, including catcher for the 1st time in his career…also saw action at first, second, third, shortstop, and center field…made pro debut in CF and at 1B on 8/3 vs. Midland…named the Rangers Minor League Defender of the Month for April…batted .283 (49-173) over 1st 44 games prior to landing on the disabled list…was on the disabled list 5/28-6/23 with right knee infection, including a 3-game rehab assignment with the AZL Rangers, 6/21-23… batted .235 (54-229) over final 64 games after returning from the disabled list…hit .194 (6-31) with 7 walks over 10 games with the Surprise Saguaros in the Arizona Fall League.
Had the 5th-highest average among all Texas minor leaguers… combined to bat .296 (106-358) with 12 doubles, 2 triples, and 40 RBI over 98 games with Hickory and High Desert…saw action at second, third, shortstop, and left field…opened the season with Hickory and was promoted to High Desert on 6/25…batted .191 (13-68) over first 19 games with the Mavericks and .358 (59-165) over final 41 contests.
Hit a combined .246 (72-293) in 79 games with Hickory, Spokane, and the AZL Rangers… opened season with Hickory and was on the disabled list May 14-June 27 with a hamate fracture on his left hand…transferred to Spokane upon activation from the disabled list and was the club's primary shortstop.
Compiled the 7th-highest average in the Arizona League…split time between second and shortstop…batted .391 (43-110) against right-handed pitchers and .128 (5-39) versus southpaws…batted .216 (8-37) over his first 11 games and .357 (40-112) over the final 30 games.