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Time has arrived for Rangers to cut Willie Calhoun loose

(AP photo/Tony Gutierrez)


Willie Calhoun knew Wednesday night he had screwed up.

He failed to score a critical run for the Texas Rangers from third base on a ground ball that Houston Astros first baseman Yuli Gurriel fielded well behind the bag.

As things unfolded, had he scored the Rangers likely would have tied the game. Instead, they lost by a run.

Calhoun was at his locker to answer whatever questions the media had. He took the blame and was accountable to his teammates and coaches.

It’s what a pro does, and, many in the media agreed with the comment that Calhoun had grown up.

Now, flash to Sunday.

Jeff Wilson

Sports reporter for two decades. Sports fan for life. Covers the Texas Rangers. Graduate of TCU. Colorado native. Author of Purple Passion: TCU Football Legends (https://t.co/2fmXLyympx). Follow me on Twitter at @JeffWilsonTXR

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  1. Rangerfansince72 May 2, 2022

    I know, nobody asked me but here’s my 2 cents worth and I agree 100% with Jeff. It is time to move on from WC because the majors now are moving away from one trick ponies, non pitchers that is, unless they REALLY good at their one trick. Also, IMHO, love what Leody is doing this year in the minors but I think he would greatly benefit from a full year in AAA and just be one of the September call ups. Build up his confidence to the point where there is no question he belongs in MLB. Over qualify him in other words so next when he goes to camp it is his job in center to lose with the idea that its really his job.

    1. Jeff Wilson May 2, 2022

      Thanks for the comment. Calhoun is a DH, and he’s no Nelson Cruz or David Ortiz or you get the idea. I would actually put Nellie in the outfield before Willie. On Taveras, I think he will be up soon. Everything I hear is that the at-bats are just tremendous, even when he’s not getting hits. He had only two walks the last time I looked, but he’s hitting everything. I don’t disagree with you on keep him down, but I think the Rangers are inclined to get him up.

  2. Chev Chelios May 2, 2022

    Jeff, I commend you on this article. I like Willie but he shouldn’t have said what he did. I think he does have a small market and I hope things work out for him there, but Texas needs to separate themselves from him. Cheers to you on this content. Look forward to your stuff (and you & John’s Podcast) on a regular basis.

    1. Jeff Wilson May 5, 2022

      Thanks, dude. I don’t wish anything bad on him. He’s no Keone Kela. But he’s going to have trouble succeeding until he gets past this tendency.

  3. To piggy-back a bit off of one of the main ideas of the article, I’m curious how the Rangers compare to other organizations in terms of supporting players. I’ve read a lot about the steps the organization has taken with Josh Hamilton, Matt Bush, Willie Calhoun and others. To me, it reflects a healthy culture that I would think is attractive to most players. Do other organizations act similarly?

    1. Jeff Wilson May 5, 2022

      Not only that, they have taken it further with a mental skills department that is not just for on-the-field stuff. They do care, in part because a player with a clear head is a better player, but there are good people running the organization.

  4. Adolph Stephens May 4, 2022

    “Calhoun isn’t a very good defender or runner. He has one tool”

  5. It sounds like, if not for his attitude and history of attitude issues, his leash would have been longer than the 44 AB that weren’t as bad as others. However, I am sure that his headache causing behind the scenes was likely worse and, given the history, the grown ups in the room are fed up.

    1. Jeff Wilson May 5, 2022

      Two things: He was struggling and straying from what his coaches have asked of him, and he had options. When Willie thinks things are going well he’s great. As soon as something goes south, he’s not. I like Willie a lot, but he can be own worse enemy.


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