AAA: Round Rock 12, El Paso (SDP) 2
Round Rock: 20 hits, 5 walks, 7 strikeouts
Opponent: 9 hits, 6 walks, 8 strikeouts
Record: 22-20, 9.5 GB
SP James Marvel: 5.1 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 4 BB, 3 SO, 78 P / 42 S, 3.77 ERA
RP Chase Lee: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 SO, 4.24 ERA
3B Justin Foscue: 4-5, BB, .276/.393/.476
DH Sam Huff: 4-5, 2B, BB, .283/.351/.465
SS Davis Wendzel: 2-5, 2B, HR (4), .207/.329/.380
RF Sandro Fabian: 4-5, 2B, .229/.302/.352
C Matt Whatley: 2-4, 2 2B, BB, .208/.288/.245
The Express shook off a ten-game losing streak with a torrent of activity: 12 runs, 19 hits, and five walks in just six innings. Six Chihuahuas combined for 156 pitches in that span. El Paso was already among the oldest and dullest AAA squads, to be blunt, and now starter Matt Waldron’s formerly knuckle-heavy approach is dominated by a fastball. Yawn.
The Express actually left much on the table. In the first three innings, three runners were tagged attempting to score, and another two were stranded at third.
Chase Lee fell a pitch shy of an immaculate inning in the 7th. Beyond that I can’t say much, as I was mainly there so my daughter could see fireworks.
Texas signed reliever Tyler Zombro, unfortunately most famous for taking a line drive that fractured his skull in 2021. Zombro returned from that but a year later underwent thoracic outlet syndrome surgery, which by law obligates him to pitch for the Rangers at some point. Those injuries and covid have limited him 13.1 innings the past three-plus years.
AA: Frisco 1, Amarillo (ARI) 2
Frisco: 6 hits, 4 walks, 14 strikeouts
Opponent: 4 hits, 4 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 16-20, 3.5 GB
SP Owen White: 5 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 2 SO, 62 P / 36 S, 3.72 ERA
RP Marc Church: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO, 3.71 ERA
RP Alex Speas: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 1.46 ERA
RP Eudrys Manon: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 6.00 ERA
CF Evan Carter: 2-3, BB, SB (7), .285/.421/.415
2B Thomas Saggese: 2-4, .306/.350/.444
Owen White just doesn’t quite seem himself. His velocity is down a tic or two since I saw him last month in San Antonio, and that was down a tic or two from last year. He’s still effective, just more polite about it. White’s strikeout rate (20%) and swinging strike rate (10.5%) are both well into the lower half among Texas Leaguers with at least 20 innings.
Hi-A: Hickory 0, Rome (ATL) 1
Hickory: 3 hits, 1 walk, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 4 hits, 2 walks, 10 strikeouts
Record: 12-23, 11 GB
SP Josh Stephan: 6 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 7 SO, 82 P / 54 S, 2.17 ERA
Hickory has the best walk rate in the league (8.9%) and four of the top ten among the 69 pitchers with at least 20 innings. Josh Stephan is among them, having steadily progressed from respectable to terrific control over his three pro years (especially against a backdrop of ever-worsening control at all levels).
Hickory is four shy of 2021’s franchise-worst 16-game losing streak. That one was far worse, culminating with a season-ending six-game series at Rome with lousy weather and covid absences. Three games were canceled, the last (if I remember correctly) a day in advance so everyone could get the heck out of there.
Lo-A: TBD (Porter plus one, I imagine)