Michael Choice couldn’t ask for a better scenario, playing for his hometown team. He starred at Mansfield Timberview, then UT Arlington and is now in line to become an important role player for the Texas Rangers.
The Rangers acquired Choice this off-season in a trade that sent Craig Gentry to Oakland. Choice has been impressive in camp. He homered for the third time Saturday, sending a three-run shot to the right-center-field lawn in the eighth inning.
That is one of his highlights this spring. He went through his others from his younger playing days in Tarrant County and his best moment as a professional.
Mansfield Timberview: “I had a lot of fun playing there and what I remember most is my first varsity at-bat when I was a sophomore. I hit a home run to right-center field, so that was pretty cool.”
UT Arlington: “I remember my sophomore year in 2009 was really fun because we had three guys who hit .400. Myself, Matt Otteman and Andrew Kainer were the 3-4-5 hitters and every day you knew that when we were coming up, somebody would get a hit. We thought it was pretty funny that a team couldn’t get through three of us without one of us getting a hit.”
Professional: “At High A Stockton in 2011, my parents were out there over Father’s Day and I hit a walk-off [home run]. That was the first time that I had ever hit a walk-off and it happened to be on Father’s Day when my dad [Charles] was there. That was probably my most memorable game as a professional.”
1 As the 10th overall selection in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, Choice became the highest drafted player in UT Arlington history
He said it
“For a guy approaching his rookie season, he’s shown us that he’s got the ability and earned the opportunity to try and make a contribution here. But we’re not setting any expectations for him to carry the club. We just want him to be a contributor.” — general manager Jon Daniels on Choice
Words of Wash
“[Pitching coach Mike Maddux] will be there. I’m going home. I’m going to go to bed and get some sleep.” — Ron Washington, on why he wasn’t going to attend the Rangers’ minor league game on Saturday night