Time for this month's Delino DeShields post

For the moment, Delino DeShields is the Texas leadoff man (Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

There have been many stops and starts in Delino DeShields’s career. Solid rookie season in 2015. Step backward last year. Blistering spring to open 2017, then a quick trip into lineup limbo. That’s life with a Jeff Banister team sometimes.

We had a DeShields promotion piece in late March, and one in late April. And to be honest, we need one now. Maybe the timing is finally right.

After rusting on the bench for a few weeks, DeShields finally landed back in the rotation last Sunday. He’s played eight games in a row, all of them in the leadoff spot. Sometimes he’s been in left, sometimes in center. Once he was the DH.

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DeShields is 12-for-32 over that stretch, with six runs, six walks, and five juicy stolen bases in five attempts. He’s hiked his average to .285; his OBP is a solid .354. If the Rangers would leave DeShields alone for a minute or two, perhaps they’d realize they have a strong leadoff man here.

A Carlos Gomez shoulder injury cleared the path for DeShields; things could get complicated if and when Gomez returns. The Rangers backdated Gomez’s DL stint to Aug. 16, so he could be just a week away. Then again, another injury could always free up a theoretical spot for Double D. Joey Gallo, ostensibly the team’s primary left fielder these days, suffered a non-displaced nasal fracture Sunday, the result of a fielding collision with teammate Matt Bush.

It’s been a difficult year to find steals; we’re living in a homer and strikeout world. I scooped up a few DeShields tickets this week, with the idea that stolen bases often come in clumps. He’s at the top of a plus lineup, and he can be a three-category contributor. We’re also talking about someone who just turned 25; someone with a first-round pedigree; someone with excellent stolen-base bloodlines.

If you want to kick the tires, Kid DeShields is ready to go in 94 percent of Yahoo leagues.