Rangers Farm Report: Games of Friday 24 June

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 3, at Oklahoma City (LAD) 4
Round Rock: 4 hits, 1 walk, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 8 hits, 2 walks, 15 strikeouts
Record: 35-35, 8 GB

SP Kolby Allard: 4.1 IP, 3 H (1 HR), 2 R, 2 BB, 6 SO, 68 P / 41 S, 4.35 ERA
RP Chase Lee: 1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 19.29 ERA
C Sam Huff: 1-3, HR (8), BB, .253/.352/.582

There’s a batting zone in which homers were nearly certain in MLB during 2019-2021: a tight 27-31 degree angle at 100 MPH and fanning out to 19-42 degrees at 112 MPH or better. Round Rock is hitting .820 with a 3.148 slugging percentage on balls hit in that range. Sam Huff is 16th on the team in plate appearances but still leads the team with nine balls in play and eight homers in this grouping. He doesn’t hit like other people.

After a rough AAA introduction and even worse follow-up, Chase Lee had his first strong outing, striking out the side around a decently hit grounder and a softie. Lee has yet to reach 90 MPH with the Express. There was talk of him touching 95 at his peak, but velocity has never been and never will be his forte.

AA: Frisco 7, at Arkansas (SEA) 3 (10)
Frisco: 12 hits, 6 walks, 6 strikeouts
Opponent: 4 hits, 6 walks, 6 strikeouts
Record: 35-32, 2 GB

SP Jack Leiter: 4 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 5 BB, 4 SO, 89 P / 50 S, 5.36 ERA
RP Tyler Thomas: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 SO, 7.27 ERA
2B Justin Foscue: 2-5, 2B, .274/.370/.471
LF JP Martinez: 2-2, 3 BB, SB (8), .286/.409/.479
C David Garcia: 2-4, 3B, .244/.292/.456
CF Josh Stowers: 2-3, 2B, BB, .230/.347/.358

Jack Leiter walked two of the first three batters, both of whom scored on a subsequent double. In innings 2-4, Leiter retired the first two batters, only to issue a walk before collecting the final out.

I wouldn’t mind seeing JP Martinez in Round Rock, but finding space won’t be easy. Even with Willie Calhoun’s departure, the Express have five OFs (Reks, Solak, Walker, Thompson, Sale) and might gain another when Steven Duggar is activated.

High-A: Hickory 8, at Rome (ATL) 1
Hickory: 13 hits, 12 walks, 11 strikeouts
Opponent: 4 hits, 5 walks, 8 strikeouts
Record: 1-0, tied for first, 39-28 overall

SP Nick Krauth: 4 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 SO, 56 P / 35 S, 5.40 ERA
RP John Matthews: 4 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 4 SO, 2.87 ERA
CF Evan Carter: 3-5, 2B, BB, SB (12), .271/.368/.443
RF Aaron Zavala: 2-4, 2 BB, SB (9), .274/.428/.396
3B Cody Freeman: 2-3, 2 BB, SB (4), .256/.339/.412
LF Angel Aponte: 1-3, 2 BB, 2 SB (6), .300/.383/.420

Rome employed a bunch of walk-prone pitchers against a patient offense with predictable results. 2B Luisangel Acuna drew three walks and stole his 19th base. Evan Carter has reached safely 11 times in four games at Rome, reversing a four-week dry spell.

Low-A: Kinston 6, Carolina (MIL) 0
Kinston: 4 hits, 9 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 5 hits, 3 walks, 11 strikeouts
Record: 1-0, tied for first, 34-33 overall

SP Josh Stephan: 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 8 SO, 93 P / 62 S, 3.56 ERA
RP Jackson Leath: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 SO, 6.75 ERA
C Ian Moller: 1-4, 2B, BB, .129/.259/.200

Kinston collected all its runs in a three-hit, four-walk 5th. Marcus Smith drew two free passes and stole his 26th base. Ian Moller’s double came earlier to no consequence. Moller has an acceptable strikeout rate (25%) and is among the system’s most fly-prone hitters, but he’s batting only .183 with a .286 slugging percentage when he makes contact.

Three days ago, Texas’s full-season offenses collected a season-low 17 hits. The next day, a season-low eight runs. Last night, a season-high 28 walks. Baseball is funny.

Josh Stephan leads the Collard Greens with 70 strikeouts in 60.2 innings.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Howard
AA: White
Hi-A: TBD (White’s vacated spot, maybe Kindreich)
Lo-A: TBD (Mitch Bratt’s turn)

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Connor Sadzeck worked in relief. Before then, he’d started 89 of 96 pro games, and most of the relief appearances were lengthy. Since the switch, he’s relieved in 148 of 152 outings, and all four “starts” were as an opener or on rehab. Sadzeck always carried a wheelbarrow full of reliever risk, but at times during 2017 I’d talked myself into thinking he might actually stick as a starter. Sadzeck threw a scoreless inning for Milwaukee-affiliated Nashville last night.