Dec. 3, 2013
ARLINGTON, Texas — The Texas Rangers today announced that the club has acquired forrmer UT Arlington standout Michael Choice and infielder Chris Bostick from the Oakland A's for right-handed pitcher Josh Lindblom and outfielder Craig Gentry.
"We followed Michael during his amateur days literally down the block," Texas general manager Jon Daniels said. "He has a chance to hit for power and can play defense. He plays all three outfield spots. He will have an opportunity to come into camp and compete for a job."
Choice, 24, made his major league debut with the A's this past September going 5-for-18 (.278) in nine games, including two starts in right and one in left. He singled off Martin Perez for his first major league hit on Sept. 3 at Oakland. The right-handed batter was a Pacific Coast League all-star at Sacramento, batting .302 with 14 homers and 89 RBI in 132 games, his first Triple-A action. Choice slugged 30 homers for Class A Stockton in 2011. He was listed as Oakland's number two prospect by Baseball America entering 2013.
"My job is to get ready this offseason and come into spring training in the best shape possible," Choice said. "I have to be able to prove to be able to show that I am ready for that type of role. My main goal is to go in and help this team win."
Choice has the potential to start right away, according to Daniels. Choice was surprised and excited by the move.
"I was running errands today and I got the phone call," he said. "Shortly after I got a call from John Daniels and [Texas manager] Ron Washington. It was a great feeling. It was something I've always dreamed about in playing at home and the fact that it has become a reality is really cool.
"My family is really excited and my phone has been going off the wall with friends and family congratulating me. I will have an opportunity to play in front of this home crowd. It is going to be awesome."
The Fort Worth native was the 10th overall selection in the first round by Oakland in the 2010 MLB First Year Player Draft after starring for three seasons at the UT Arlington. He is the Mavericks' all-time career home run leader (34) and was the 2010 Southland Conference Player of the Year, leading the nation in walks (76). He is a graduate of Mansfield Timberview High School.
"I bet he is excited, but not half as excited as his family is," UT Arlington coach Darin Thomas said.
Bostick, a 20-year-old second baseman, batted .282 with 14 homers, 89 RBI, and 25 stolen bases in 129 games at Class A Beloit in 2013. The right-handed batter ranked third in the Midwest League in RBI and was fourth with 221 total bases. Bostick has played three pro seasons after being selected by Oakland in the 44th round of the 2011 First Year Player Draft.
Choice was listed as the A's number two prospect with Bostick listed as the number eight prospect on Baseball Prospectus' top 10 list of Oakland prospects after the 2013 season.
Gentry batted .280 with 2 homers, 22 RBI, and 24 stolen bases in 106 games with the Rangers in 2013, his second full season with the club. Lindblom was 1-3, 5.46 in 8 games/5 starts with the Rangers and 8-4, 3.08 in 20 games/18 starts with the Triple-A Round Rock after joining Texas from Philadelphia in December 2012.
Choice goes on the Rangers major league roster while Bostick has been assigned to Class A Myrtle Beach. With today's moves, the Rangers have 38 players on their major league roster.