LOS ANGELES – Willie Calhoun has a huge opportunity in front of him.
He’s played in 25 games so far for the Yankees, and is hitting .224, with three home runs, eight RBI, a .294 on-base percentage, and a .368 slugging percentage. Calhoun has mainly been the team’s designated hitter when he starts, with a few games played in the outfield.
Willie Calhoun Is Heating Up For Yankees
He’s not off to the greatest of starts to the season, but over the last week, there has been improvement.
He’s had a .353 on-base percentage and a .429 slugging percentage over this stretch, as he had three hits and three walks to only two strikeouts in the four games he’s played.
Early in his career, Calhoun was a very highly rated prospect, as he was rising through the farm system very quickly, earning All-Star after All-Star selections in the leagues he participated in. On July 31st, 2017, Calhoun was a centerpiece for a massive trade at the deadline when the Dodgers traded him and two other prospects to the Rangers for All-Star pitcher Yu Darvish.
Calhoun had a very mixed stint during his time with Texas. He would have spurts where he would show flashes of the highly touted prospect that the team traded for, like when he had a .269/.323/.524 slashline for the 2019 season.
However, there were also times where the game just wasn’t going his way, like when he had a .491 on-base plus slugging percentage in the shortened 2020 season, which was the second-lowest for any major leaguer who batted at least 100 times.
He also had an unlucky run with the injury bug during his time there, as he had to recover from both a fractured forearm from getting hit at the plate, and had to have surgery to restructure his jaw after getting drilled by a 95 mile-per-hour fastball during spring training.
He would constantly be brought up and then get optioned back to the minors during his last few years with the Rangers, and eventually got traded to the San Francisco Giants back in June of 2022.
He mainly spent time with San Francisco’s Triple-A team, and only played four games for them in the majors before being designated for assignment.
Yankees Give Calhoun New Life
The Yankees signed Calhoun to a minor league contract back on New Year’s Eve of 2022. He started the season on their Triple-A team, but was promoted to the majors back on April 8th, where he’s been ever since.
The Yankees are 29-20, and are five and a half games back from the top of the division. Now with fellow MLB Bro Aaron Hicks being recently designated for assignment, someone other than the big guns like Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton needs to step up. This is a golden opportunity for Calhoun to show his rough past is behind him, and that he can contribute on a consistent basis for the team.