Trevino looking to establish himself behind dish

September 15th, 2019

ARLINGTON -- Rangers catcher was not in the starting lineup for Saturday's 8-6 loss to the A's after starting the three previous contests and 10 of the last 14 games. His day off lasted just two innings.

started the game, but left in the bottom of the second with a lower back strain and is being listed as day to day. Trevino took over for the rest of the game and went 2-for-2 with two RBIs. His heavy workload will continue over the final two weeks as the Rangers start compiling their list of priorities for the offseason.

The question is whether Trevino’s performance since being called up at the beginning of August is reducing Texas' need to address its catching situation in the offseason.

“It’s not at the top of the list, and he has a lot to do with it,” manager Chris Woodward said. “It’s something we’ll definitely talk about. That’s why he is playing a lot. I want to see what it looks like on an everyday basis to see exactly what we have. I don’t want to put pressure on him, but just doing what he is doing is definitely going to make us think twice about do we need to get another catcher.”

Trevino has been good lately. He had a slow start at the plate after being called up from Triple-A Nashville, but he's hitting .350 (14-for-40) with four doubles, a home run and five RBIs since Aug. 28 entering Saturday.

“The hard work is paying off,” Trevino said. “I’m focusing on the little things and it’s all coming together. It’s a good time for me to come out and play.”

Defensively, he has handled the job as expected. Trevino won two Gold Gloves in the Minor Leagues in 2016 and 2017, and might have won another in '18 if not for season-ending shoulder surgery on July 20.

The Rangers are 13-9 in his 22 starts, winning nine of the last 13.

“Behind the plate, came as advertised,” Woodward said. “Pitchers really respect him. He works his tail off. When it comes to preparation, he and Mathis are two of the best. Trevino is a leader out there, he takes charge. Does he make the perfect call every time? No, but he wants to learn. Every day he is trying to get better, gaining a rapport with the pitcher and gaining their trust.”

The Rangers will have Mathis back next season to finish out his two-year contract. The Rangers still have a high regard for what he does behind the plate and working with pitchers. But he will be 37 next season and is a .158 hitter this year. The club sees him as a part-time player and will need a second catcher to share playing time, or even take on a bigger load.

There are plenty of potential catching options in the upcoming free-agent market. Yasmani Grandal (mutual option with Brewers) and Robinson Chirinos are probably the best, but the list also includes Brian McCann, Jonathan Lucroy, Stephen Vogt, Travis d’Arnaud, Chris Iannetta, Yan Gomes (Nationals hold club option), Jason Castro and Matt Wieters.

The Rangers, however, will need to devote their resources in acquiring one -- possibly two -- starting pitchers, as well as addressing their third-base situation.

That’s why Texas is taking a hard look at Trevino right now. This is his chance to prove he belongs on the big league squad in a prominent role.

“That’s not up to me,” Trevino said. “All I’m trying to do is what’s best for the team. I’ll worry about next year when it happens.”

Rangers beat:

was 1-for-2 with a walk in a simulated game on Saturday. He is working out with the Rangers’ instructional league team in Arizona.

• The Rangers and the Athletics both hit a pair of three-run home runs on Friday night. The last time two teams hit multiple three-run shots in a Major League game was on July 15, 1999, by the Giants and the A's in Oakland.

had one of those three-run homers and has 25 on the season. He is the fourth Rangers switch-hitter to hit 25 home runs in a season. Mark Teixeira did it four times, Ruben Sierra thrice and Mickey Tettleton once.