Rangers Farm Report: Games of Thursday 18 May

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 1, El Paso (SDP) 4
Round Rock: 7 hits, 9 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 6 hits, 8 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 21-20, 9.5 GB

SP Robert Dugger: 5.2 IP, 5 H (1 HR), 2 R, 4 BB, 6 SO, 96 P / 58 S, 4.15 ERA
2B Jonathan Ornelas: 2-3, 2 BB, .238/.367/.331
SS Davis Wendzel: 1-4, HR (3), .198/.326/.345

Davis Wendzel is still manning short most of the time despite the presence of Jonathan Ornelas. He’s also still not making the type of contact that will get him to the Majors, hitting high-angled, catchable flies a quarter of the time along with a 26% strikeout rate. Wendzel turns 26 in a few days and was selected 41st overall in 2019 out of Baylor. Ornelas has started 19 games at short and a total of 15 split among third, second, and center.

The Express have tied a franchise-worst ten consecutive losses. Meanwhile, division-leading OKC still hasn’t lost since sweeping Round Rock last week.

AA: Frisco 7, Amarillo (ARI) 1
Frisco: 12 hits, 2 walks, 6 strikeouts
Opponent: 2 hits, 3 walks, 7 strikeouts
Record: 16-19, 2.5 GB

SP Ryan Garcia: 5 IP, 2 H (1 HR), 1 R, 1 BB, 4 SO, 73 P / 47 S, 7.99 ERA
RP Triston Polley: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 SO, 5.40 ERA
RP Michael Brewer: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 SO, 2.70 ERA
RP Theo McDowell: 1 IP, 0 H (3.94 HR), 0 R, 11 BB, 1 SO, 0.00 ERA
RF Aaron Zavala: 2-4, HR (1)
DH Evan Carter: 2-4, SB (6), .275/.412/.408
2B Thomas Saggese: 3-4, HR (3), .300/.346/.443
CF Kellen Strahm: 1-3, 2B, BB, SB (4), .237/.336/.351
LF Dustin Harris: 1-3, 2B, BB, .226/.374/.427

Frisco and Amarillo have met 12 times, six in each park, scoring 97 runs in the Panhandle versus just 55 in Frisco. Amarillo’s offense is fairly punchless away from their home park, and Frisco has kept them from getting any cute ideas. Ryan Garcia had his best AA start.

Aaron Zavala appears to have returned from elbow surgery without any lingering issues.

Hi-A: Hickory 3, Rome (ATL) 4
Hickory: 6 hits, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 4 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 12-22, 11 GB

SP Matt Brosky: 3.2 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 BB, 1 HBP, 3 SO, 74 P / 44 S, 6.14 ERA
RP Yohanse Morel: 2.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 2.84 ERA
RP Spencer Mraz: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO, 1.88 ERA
LF Geisel Cepeda: 2-4, .265/.371/.313

Cody Freeman’s 29% success rate at catching potential base-stealers is sixth-best of 41 high-A catchers with at least 100 innings. Brooklyn’s Kevin Parada, strongly linked to Texas in last summer’s mock drafts and eventually taken 11th by the Mets, is 35th at 13%. Parada has also been run against more often than any other high-A catcher. Brooklyn’s other catcher has an equally high rate, so that’s probably related more to the team situation than Parada himself.

OF Elijah Green, another potential 2022 Texas pick, is batting .237/.328/.333 with a 44% strikeout rate at low-A Frederickburg. The Nationals selected him fifth. There’s isn’t any top pick I had in mind for Texas who’s having a great season so far, not to say the a quarter season is enough to pass judgment. By coincidence, I’d checked in on Parada, Green, and others a week ago before Rocker was injured. The one high pick looking like an absolute monster is IF Jackson Holliday, off the board by the time Texas selected. (Also OU alum RHP Cade Horton, picked an unexpectedly high seventh overall.)

Hickory lost again.

Lo-A: Down East 0, Fayetteville (HOU) 5
Down East: 5 hits, 4 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 3 hits, 8 walks, 12 strikeouts
Record: 19-15, 1.5 GB

SP Leandro Lopez: 4 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 1 HBP, 6 SO, 68 P / 38 S, 3.79 ERA
RP Jackson Kelley: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 SO, 1.69 ERA
CF Yeison Morrobel: 2-3, 2B, BB, .243/.385/.297

Opponents are hitting a goofy .225/.400/.268 against Leandro Lopez, who’s issued a walk or strikeout to over half his batters faced. Yeison Morrobel already has another extra-base hit.

Rumors of Down East leaving Kinston may be nothing more than that, but they’ve drawn enough attention to merit comment from the mayor. A while back, I’d mentioned REV Entertainment’s exploration of an complex outside Wilmington (NC, not DE) that would include a stadium. Per Wood Ducks GM Jon Clemmons in the linked article, that team would be independent. Another rumored location is Spartanburg, SC. That metropolis already has a team down the road in Greenville, but the tri-county area has 1.1 million people, so suppose it could support two A-level clubs. The Rangers have a lease in Kinston through 2031 (originally 2028 but later extended), although the Player Development Agreement ends after 2030.

I personally would not place a bet on having four levels of full-season minor league ball in 2031 without getting odds, but people with actual money like Diamond Baseball Holdings (Hickory’s new owners) seem to think differently, or they have a plan to deal with future contraction.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Marvel
AA: White
Hi-A: Stephan
Lo-A: TBD (Porter)

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Rain, mostly. Down East was three-hit by Dylan Cease. Ariel Jurado was called up to the Rangers and would allow four runs in 4.2 innings in his MLB debut.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Wednesday 17 May

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 4, El Paso (SDP) 10
Round Rock: 6 hits, 2 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 15 hits, 7 walks, 13 strikeouts
Record: 21-19, 8.5 GB

SP Cole Winn: 2.1 IP, 8 H (1 HR), 7 R, 4 BB, 4 SO, 80 P / 44 S, 9.17 ERA
RP Grant Anderson: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 SO, 4.11 ERA
RP Taylor Hearn: 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 0.57 ERA
2B Justin Foscue: 1-4, HR (5), .263/.377/.474

Since last May, over 33 appearances and 139.2 innings, Cole Winn has a 7.67 ERA, and opponents are batting .284/.401/.475 with a 20% walk rate.

Justin Foscue’s fifth homer was another of the laser variety.

Grant Anderson was in a mood, striking out five of six Chihuahuas on just 23 pitches. He deals a low-90s sinker and low-80s slider, both with ample movement. I have video.

AA: Frisco 10, Amarillo (ARI) 4
Frisco: 10 hits, 5 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 1 walk, 14 strikeouts
Record: 15-19, 3.5 GB

SP Jack Leiter: 6 IP, 4 H (1 HR), 3 R, 1 BB, 10 SO, 84 P / 54 S, 4.38 ERA
RP Alex Speas: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 9 HBP, 0 SO, 1.59 ERA
RP Antoine Kelly: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 2.25 ERA
RF Aaron Zavala: 2-4
CF Evan Carter: 1-4, 3B, .267/.410/.405
DH Dustin Harris: 1-3, 2B, BB, .223/.371/.421

More reliant than ever on his fastball (71% of all pitches), Jack Leiter overwhelmed Amarillo for five innings before succumbing to three runs with two out in the 6th. Through five, Leiter permitted one runner and struck out ten, a career high. I try not to pretend to know what’s going on in people’s heads, but (hot take alert) Leiter pitched with the most fire and determination since his college days. After the previous two starts, Leiter knows he can depend on his fastball. Gone is the constant struggle to find a rhythm. No more recalibration after nearly every pitch.

For the first time since I began keeping track more carefully, Leiter offered more curves than sliders, three times as many, in fact. Per usual, a good many were opening pitches (four strikes, four balls), and again they had more verve than in the past, although I still wouldn’t place them on the level of his Vandy curve. Leiter delivered only six sliders, three of which missed bats.

The 6th took a little shine off the evening. After his lone walk (all on fastballs) was erased on a double play, the next batter reached on an infield single, followed by a lined single. Amarillo catcher Caleb Roberts watched two close two-strike pitches to fill the count and then lined up a high-inside fastball perfectly for a three-run homer. Nevertheless, Wednesday was a third straight encouraging outing.

Here’s video of Leiter from the organization.

Aaron Zavala returned in style. His offensive profile is as strong as anyone in the system.

Hi-A: Hickory 1, Rome (ATL) 3
Hickory: 6 hits, 1 walk, 9 strikeouts
Opponent: 9 hits, 4 walks, 4 strikeouts
Record: 12-21, 11 GB

SP Winston Santos: 5.2 IP, 4 H (1 HR), 2 R, 2 BB, 2 SO, 87 P / 57 S, 5.46 ERA
DH Alejandro Osuna: 2-3, BB, SB (10), .227/.417/.318

Winston Santos exited the IL with a performance typical of his season. Alejandro Osuna has more combined walks and HBPs (30) than strikeouts (28) but hasn’t found the contact that produced a .302 average in 2022.

Hickory has lost ten straight, outscored 64-26.

Lo-A: Down East 1, Fayetteville (HOU) 2
Down East: 4 hits, 3 walks, 16 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 2 walks, 14 strikeouts
Record: 19-14, 1 GB

SP Luis Ramirez: 3 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 5 SO, 49 P / 29 S, 1.88 ERA
RP Joseph Montalvo: 3.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 6 SO, 2.49 ERA
RP Jackson Leath: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 SO, 2.38 ERA
RP Alberto Mota: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO, 6.75 ERA
1B Abi Ortiz: 1-3, 2B, BB, .292/.377/.584

The 30th strikeout of the game stranded three Down East runners in the 9th. Four Woodies pitched capably.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Dugger
AA: Garcia
Hi-A: Brosky

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Catcher Jose Trevino doubled and walked, and Brett Martin fanned six and allowed a run in five innings in a 4-2 Frisco win.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Tuesday 16 May

As widely reported, RHP Kumar Rocker has a torn elbow ligament and will undergo Tommy John surgery. Perversely, MLB.com had announced placement of Rocker on its top-100 prospect list mere minutes before the news broke. I’d written about a sudden loss of control and command in last week’s start (in fact, I’d drafted and then deleted “like flipping a switch”), but I didn’t observe anything physically worrying at the time. He did become fastball-heavy and completely cease throwing sliders in the middle of his final inning but continued to offer curves. As I’d mentioned, all of Rocker’s previous runs had scored in just two rough innings. Last Thursday seemed just another example of that.

Assuming 14 months until his next real game, Rocker would return in mid-July, meaning up to a month of games at the Surprise complex followed by another month in a full-season league, then instructionals and the Arizona Fall League. So, again assuming a standard recovery, 2024 could be a not too terribly unproductive year.

OF Aaron Zavala is active in Frisco. RHP Winston Santos is active in Hickory.

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 3, El Paso (SDP) 12
Round Rock: 8 hits, 1 walk, 11 strikeouts
Opponent: 16 hits, 5 walks, 6 strikeouts
Record: 21-18, 7.5 GB

SP Kyle Cody: 3 IP, 9 H (1 HR), 8 R, 0 BB, 0 SO, 63 P / 43 S, 6.83 ERA
RP Chase Lee: 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 4.64 ERA
SS Jonathan Ornelas: 2-4, 2 2B, .236/.362/.333

CF Rafael Ortega stole a homer.

Texas released lefty Joe Palumbo, who’d rejoined the Rangers after an unsuccessful stint with the Giants. Palumbo walked four in an inning yesterday and ten of 17 batters over three appearances. Oft-injured, Palumbo has just never been on track post-2020.

AA: Frisco 3, Amarillo (ARI) 2
Frisco: 9 hits, 3 walks, 12 strikeouts
Opponent: 2 hits, 1 walk, 13 strikeouts
Record: 14-19, 4.5 GB

SP TK Roby: 6.1 IP, 2 H (1 HR), 2 R, 1 BB, 1 HBP, 8 SO, 82 P / 54 S, 6.11 ERA
RP Marc Church: 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 SO, 3.94 ERA
RP Nick Starr: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 8.31 ERA
LF Dustin Harris: 3-4, 2B, .220/.367/.415

With one out in the 5th, catcher Scott Kapers was hit on his throwing hand with a foul tip and had to leave. TK Roby then hit Jordan Lawlar (who himself would depart after the half-inning) and walked Roby Enriquez. Not a great situation.

Roby then retired 18 straight, eight via strikeout, and carried a no-hitter into the 7th. A triple and homer ended his day, but on the whole, Roby produced one of his season’s best starts.

Evan Carter’s well has run dry for the moment. He’s 6-for-42 with no extra base hits and 14 strikeouts in his last ten games. Dustin Harris is .245/.351/.469 over the same period with three of his four homers. He’s sharply cut down on April’s weirdly high strikeout rate but has a still-modest .285 average on contact.

Hi-A: Hickory 3, Rome (ATL) 7
Hickory: 6 hits, 3 walks, 11 strikeouts
Opponent: 13 hits, 2 walks, 13 strikeouts
Record: 12-20, 11 GB

SP Mitch Bratt: 4.2 IP, 9 H (1 HR), 3 R, 2 BB, 7 SO, 88 P / 56 S, 3.91 ERA
CF Daniel Mateo: 2-4, HR (4), .271/.285/.458

Mitch Bratt missed a season-high 14 bats and fanned seven, but most of what went the other direction caused damage. He walked two for the first time.

Lo-A: Down East 10, Fayetteville (HOU) 0
Down East: 10 hits, 4 walks, 9 strikeouts
Opponent: 4 hits, 1 walk, 12 strikeouts
Record: 19-13, tied for first

SP DJ McCarty: 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 HBP, 8 SO, 74 P / 45 S, 0.92 ERA
RP Kai Wynyard: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 0.00 ERA
RP Damian Mendoza: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO, 2.08 ERA
RP Adrian Rodriguez: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 3.00 ERA
RF Yeison Morrobel: 1-4, HR (1), .224/.373/.269
SS Cam Cauley: 2-3, HR (2), BB, SB (8), .261/.317/.391
3B Gleider Figuereo: 1-3, 2B, BB, .202/.324/.309
2B Danyer Cueva: 2-4, HR (1), .247/.282/.361

Last year, Yeison Morrobel averaged an extra-base hit per 11 plate appearances. In 2023, he needed 80 trips to collect his first. I’ll take the under on 80 PAs for his next one.

Just to remind you, and myself again, DJ McCarty is a free agent signed out of high school in 2020. Dylan MacLean is a Texas’s 4th-rounder out of high school from the same year. Aussie Kai Wynyard made his 2023 debut.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Winn
AA: Leiter
Lo-A: Ramirez

Five Years Ago Yesterday
“Another example of how baseball has changed recently: [Low-A] Hickory pitchers have a ratio of 2.4 strikeouts per walk. Sounds pretty good, right? Anything over 2:1 is solid, yes? Not now. That ratio is the worst in the 14-team South Atlantic League. The average ratio is 3:1, and Charleston leads the league with 3.9 strikeouts per walk.”

That change didn’t last. A 2:1 ratio isn’t solid, but it’s close. Strikeouts are higher than ever, but the walk rate in Texas’s low-A league has increased by two-thirds since 2018:

2012: 2.2 strikeouts per walk (9.0% BB, 19.8% SO)
2013: 2.5
2014: 2.4
2015: 2.4
2016: 2.7
2017: 3.0
2018: 3.1 (7.5% BB, 23.5% SO)
2019: 2.8
2021: 2.3
2022: 2.2
2023: 2.1 (12.5% BB, 26.8% SO)

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Sunday 14 May

Cody Bradford makes his MLB debut tonight after only seven AAA starts. This time last year, Bradford was sporting a 9.00 ERA with peripherals to match in AA. Not until August would he fully right the ship and head toward his current status.

Bradford hasn’t thrown a pitch over 92.0 MPH this season, and his average fastball velocity is 89.5 MPH. It plays up with his good extension, and he moves it around and works upstairs fearlessly. Indeed, the high fastball sets up the changeup and adds a little spice to a relatively ordinary breaker. The change is his best pitch, and the only pitch with substantial horizontal movement. It’s not purely a chase pitch; he will place it in the zone more commonly than the typical pitcher.

Most writeups describe Bradford as having a cutter, but I’m not seeing anything distinct from his slider and fastball in the statcast data, although the hardest sliders tend to break slightly less. Likewise, current descriptions of Bradford don’t include a curve, and I haven’t written about one this year, but looking at the data in more detail I’m seeing a 1.5 MPH gap in his velo range splitting an 83-88 slider and a 78-81 bender with more drop. If you want to say he throws a fastball, cutter, slider, and curve, that’s fine. If you want to say he throws a continuum in a 78-92 MPH range that acquires more drop and glove-side movement as the velocity decreases, that works too. Bradford generates the most misses on changes (17% of all pitches, 30% of swings), a slightly lesser proportion on fastballs, and less still on the breakers.

Bradford has above-average command and the ability to throw any pitch in any count. He’s thrown 50% fastballs, 27% changes, 18%, sliders, and 6% curves in 2023 per statcast. On first pitches, he’s dealt a fastball only 5% more often along with more breakers and fewer changes. Only 33% of plate appearances have begun with a 1-0 count compared to 53% at 0-1 and the other 14% in play. Although he has a respectable 25% strikeout rate, his game more about getting ahead and forcing bad-count swings that may or may not conclude with a strikeout. Bradford is actually among Texas’s most fly-prone pitchers (43%), but the median exit velocity off the bat is a meager 87.1 MPH, near the lowest among Express pitchers. A bunch of those flies are hit at a 50-degree angle about 200 feet.

Bradford has an 0.91 ERA and .156/.240/.200 opposing line in Round Rock, with good if slightly inconsistent control plus command that has probably never been better. Even so, expecting continuation of his AAA results is too much to ask, and it’s tough to project him as better than a back-end starter simply because of what he throws. (Hopefully that doesn’t come across as an insult. A consistent back-end starter can retire with a small fortune.) And by the way, he’s also facing the National League’s second-highest-scoring offense. Bradford’s job is to keep Texas in the game and not overburden the bullpen.

Here’s my video of Bradford in Round Rock and another from Surprise.

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 5, Oklahoma City (LAD) 7
Round Rock: 8 hits, 3 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 9 hits, 3 walks, 12 strikeouts
Record: 21-17, 6.5 GB

SP Grant Anderson: 2 IP, 2 H (1 HR), 2 R, 2 BB, 5 SO, 39 P / 26 S, 4.73 ERA
RP Grant Wolfram: 3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 SO, 0.00 ERA
CF Jonathan Ornelas: 3-5, 2B, .227/.359/.311
1B Blaine Crim: 2-4, 2 HR (4), .270/.367/.458

How thoughtful of Blaine Crim to homer twice the day after I said he was better than his stats would indicate. I was mostly referring to his poor luck on grounders, but I was also thinking about his relative lack of power and had typed and then deleted a trite sentence to the effect of “his performance would also improve with more homers.”

Grant Wolfram: 92-95 fastball, 82-86 slider, 78-82 curve. The 26-year-old had been the steadiest of Frisco’s relievers. Texas drafted him in 2018’s 18th round.

Elsewhere: The Mets purchased the contract of reliever Dennis Santana. The Marlins outrighted RHP Chi Chi Rodriguez.

AA: cancelled

Rain, or maybe 30-year-old IF Nick Tanielu pulled the Bull Durham sprinkler trick.

The farm was 3-20 with a -64 run differential last week, and all but Down East are sitting on losing streaks of at least seven games.

Hi-A: Hickory 5, at Bowling Green (TAM) 7
Hickory: 9 hits, 3 walks, 14 strikeouts
Opponent: 8 hits, 3 walks, 8 strikeouts
Record: 12-19, 10 GB

SP Larson Kindreich: 3 IP, 2 H (2 HR), 2 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 36 P / 26 S, 4.58 ERA
RP Brandon Webb: 2.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO, 9.49 ERA
RP Andy Rodriguez: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO, 2.40 ERA
LF Geisel Cepeda: 3-4, 2B, SB (3), .268/.388/.324
3B Keyber Rodriguez: 2-4, 2 SB (7), .272/.320/.337
RF Angel Aponte: 2-5, 2B, 2 SB (3), .208/.263/.321

Hickory stole nine bases against various pitchers and catcher Nate Soria, who’d been acceptable so far this season (9 games, 9 steals, 3 caught), and Bowling Green as a whole was one of the better steal-prevention squads in the league. Hickory also had nine hits to Bowling Green’s eight, a 19-5 advantage in at-bats with runners in scoring position, zero errors compared to Bowling Green’s five, and one wild pitch to Bowling Green’s four. Hickory lost.

Lo-A: Down East 4, Delmarva (BAL) 5
Down East: 7 hits, 5 walks, 11 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 1 walk, 15 strikeouts
Record: 18-13, tied for first

SP Aidan Curry: 6 IP, 3 H (1 HR), 1 R, 0 BB, 8 SO, 76 P / 49 S, 3.29 ERA
1B Abi Ortiz: 2-4, HR (6), BB, .296/.381/.593

Abimelec Ortiz ranks third in the league in homers and second in slugging. Last year at the same level, he hit 11 in 94 games and slugged .380, on the light side for a first baseman who dabbles on the outfield corners.

Here’s some video highlights of Aidan Curry’s fine start.

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Tyler Phillips shut out low-A Rome for five innings. Alex Speas nabbed a win with a scoreless 9th.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Saturday 13 May

Whew. In the last week, the farm has lost 20 of 23 to fall to 64-65. All three wins are by Down East. All week, Cody Bradford has been slated to start the Sunday afternoon game. As of this morning, he’s not.

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 1, Oklahoma City (LAD) 2
Round Rock: 4 hits, 3 walks, 11 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 4 walks, 3 strikeouts
Record: 21-16, 5.5 GB

SP James Marvel: 6 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 2 SO, 83 P / 50 S, 4.00 ERA
3B Jonathan Ornelas: 1-3, BB, SB (2), .211/.350/.289
1B Justin Foscue: 1-3, 2B, BB, .282/.403/.492

Justin Foscue debuted at first base as a professional. He was busy, recording ten putouts and three assists, inclusive of involvement of three double plays. This isn’t a surprise. Even in college, Foscue was a bat-first infielder. He spent more time at third in school, more at second in the pros, but has yet to definitely attach himself to either. First base is a possibility, either as a full-time position if he hits well enough or part of a flex if he doesn’t. Keep in mind that Foscue is as likely of a trade chip as anyone in the organization.

AA: Frisco 3, Wichita (MIN) 12
Frisco: 8 hits, 6 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 11 hits, 10 walks, 8 strikeouts
Record: 13-19, 5.5 GB

SP Nick Krauth: 0.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 0 SO, 35 P / 17 S, 3.06 ERA
2B Luisangel Acuna: 1-3, 2 BB, .321/.385/.471
3B Thomas Saggese: 4-5, 2B, .295/.340/.426

I assume the folks in Frisco aren’t reading my “five years ago” segments, but they’re doing an unfortunate impersonation of the 2018 club lately. Frisco has lost seven straight by a combined margin of 40 runs. Opponents are hitting .306/.409/.497 and scoring 8.4 runs per game against the Riders in May, easily the most in the league.

Thomas Saggese is stemming the tide, batting .380/.392/.540 with three four-hit games this month.

SS Corey Seager was 0-2 with a walk.

Hi-A: Hickory 3, at Bowling Green (TAM) 4
Hickory: 4 hits, 4 walks, 7 strikeouts
Opponent: 6 hits, 2 walks, 6 strikeouts
Record: 12-18, 9 GB

SP Josh Stephan: 6.1 IP, 6 H (2 HR), 4 R, 1 BB, 5 SO, 77 P / 53 S, 2.59 ERA
SS Max Acosta: 1-4, HR (4), .302/.362/.479

Max Acosta has equaled last year’s four homers in 77% fewer plate appearances. His rate of extra-base hits has barely changed, but instead of nearly always doubling, he’s going deep almost half the time. Acosta ranked among Texas’s top ten prospects when signed but has dropped to the bottom or off of top-30 lists as he’s played. He’s doing a good job of reversing that trend in 2023.

Lo-A: Down East 5, Delmarva (BAL) 4
Down East: 10 hits, 3 walks, 12 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 3 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 18-12, tied for first

SP Jose Corneill: 4.2 IP, 2 H (1 HR), 3 R, 3 BB, 1 HBP, 5 SO, 79 P / 50 S, 3.80 ERA
RP Dylan MacLean: 3 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 SO, 3.05 ERA
CF Anthony Gutierrez: 1-3, 2 BB, .270/.333/.340
C Tucker Mitchell: 2-4, BB, .354/.469/.523
SS Cam Cauley: 2-4, 2B, .247/.299/.348

The quietest of Texas five 2020 picks so far, Dylan MacLean has a 25% strikeout rate, better than his previous two seasons.

Down a run in the 9th with two on and two out, Tucker Mitchell’s single plus a Delmarva throwing error plated both runners.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Anderson
AA: TK Roby
Hi-A: Collyer

Five Years Ago Yesterday
A 10-3 victory at San Antonio improved Frisco to 8-28.

Cody Bradford’s MLB Debut

On Monday, Bradford allowed nine balls in play in excess of 103 MPH. His total in seven AAA starts was eight. Against Atlanta, 15 of 18 balls in play were over 90, and the median was 102.9. Bradford’s median exit velocity in AAA is only 87.1.

Bradford can command his fastball to any corner, but he tends focus on the high, outside part of the plate against righties. That type of location was noticeably absent Monday. (Charts below are against RHB only.)

Perhaps Bradford was influenced by the umpire, who didn’t give Bradford the call on two high pitches (and another on the outer edge) that would be robo-umped strikes on a weeknight in the Pacific Coast League. Bradford’s 1st-inning misses:

And, perhaps, the lack of high calls created a downstream effect on his slider. Bradford’s breaker is his weakest pitch, but it’s functional and plays well off a fastball that likes to hunt in the other direction. On Monday, it was as ineffectual as a pitch could be. He threw 11, resulting in seven balls, two homers, a double, and a groundout. No misses, no calls, not even a foul.

In a preview of his impending debut, I mentioned that Bradford solid change isn’t a pure chase pitch. He’ll throw it for strikes. Not so much Monday, which contained his lowest in-zone changeup percentage as well as the most fastballs in the zone by far. Another stat, perhaps the most telling, is that Atlanta offered at fewer outside-the-zone pitches than any of Bradford’s AAA opponents:

DateLevelFB in
CH in
Zone Swing%

Another possibility is the Atlanta’s offense is just really, really good, particularly against lefties, and Bradford could have suffered this fate even if he’d already established himself as a back-end starter. Atlanta is batting .285/.357/.502 against lefty starters.

I don’t think the Rangers were punting this game. Not in 2023. They wanted to give the rotation an extra day of rest while not overtaxing the bullpen, but my thought is the Rangers also believed Bradford could keep the game competitive.

I thought Texas would pull Bradford after four innings and four runs. That’s not quite keeping the game close and isn’t quite saving the bullpen, but it’s on the fringe of both. Bradford had retired seven straight. Instead, Atlanta’s lineup received a third look at him in the 5th, and two more runs scored.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Friday 12 May

The farm is 2-14 so far this week.

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 0, Oklahoma City (LAD) 6
Round Rock: 2 hits, 0 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 9 hits, 4 walks, 7 strikeouts
Record: 21-15, 4.5 GB

SP Robert Dugger: 5.2 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 2 BB, 3 SO, 94 P / 63 S, 4.34 ERA

Blaine Crim was 0-3 last night (along with six of his teammates), but let’s talk about his season. Crim has a 13% walk rate and more walks than strikeouts, exceptionally rare nowadays. His rate of balls in play over 95 MPH and in what I call the “good zone” (a combination of exit velos and angles that are either very likely to be a base hit or have around a 25%+ chance of leaving the park) are the best on the team. His popup and grounder rates are fine. Yet he’s hitting .275 and slugging. 418, not bad but ordinary, and at odds with the statcast data. What gives?

Some of the problem might be bad luck. Crim is batting 1-for-24 (.042) on grounders. The Express and their opponents are batting .157. Crim is 0-for-7 on balls I describe as “unlucky” (better-than-average exit velo but at an angle that tends to get caught). The Express and opponents are hitting .147 on those. Crim isn’t going beat out many grounders, but he ought to be able to squeeze a few more into the outfield.

Given his position and the presence of Nathaniel Lowe, Crim has to destroy the ball to draw attention. He’s not there yet, but I do think he’s been better than his slash stats would suggest.

AA: Frisco 5, Wichita (MIN) 13
Frisco: 9 hits, 3 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 15 hits, 8 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 13-18, 5 GB

SP Owen White: 3.2 IP, 4 H (1 HR), 4 R, 3 BB, 1 HBP, 4 SO, 79 P / 45 S, 3.73 ERA
CF Evan Carter: 2-5, SB (5), .291/.443/.427
DH Trevor Hauver: 1-2, HR (2), .221/.370/.337
3B Thomas Saggese: 1-4, HR (2), .274/.324/.403

Owen White walked three in the 4th, the last of which ended his night. An earlier homer came on a belly-button-high 91 MPH fastball and was hit 465 feet. In White’s defense, he delivered it where instructed, as best as i could tell from watching on MiLB.tv.

Hi-A: Hickory 4, at Bowling Green (TAM) 5
Hickory: 7 hits, 3 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 11 hits, 3 walks, 10 strikeouts
Record: 12-17, 9 GB

SP Matt Brosky: 3.2 IP, 5 H (1 HR), 3 R, 2 BB, 7 SO, 77 P / 45 S, 4.91 ERA
RF Alejandro Osuna: 1-3, HR (1), BB, .240/.427/.327
C Cody Freeman: 1-3, HR (4), BB, .208/.259/.442

2022 8th-rounder Matt Brosky made his high-A debut, striking out seven of 19 batters but allowing a homer to Nick Schnell (who homered off Kumar Rocker Thursday).

Joining Brosky is righty Wyatt Sparks, who’d been assigned to Frisco after TJ surgery and didn’t fare well. Righty Eudrys Manon swapped places with Sparks.

Lo-A: Down East 2, Delmarva (BAL) 7
Down East: 7 hits, 6 walks, 12 strikeouts
Opponent: 10 hits, 2 walks, 11 strikeouts
Record: 17-12, tied for first

SP Brock Porter: 3.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 6 SO, 64 P / 40 S, 1.37 ERA
RP Brayan Mendoza: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 SO, 0.00 ERA
RP Alberto Mota: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO, 0.00 ERA
1B Abi Ortiz: 2-4, 3B, HR (5), BB, .292/.379/.569
RF Yeison Morrobel: 2-4, SB (8), .207/.378/.207
3B Gleider Figuereo: 2-3, BB, .195/.320/.299

For the first time this season, Brock Porter avoided putting two runners on base via walk or HBP. His leash remains tight. He was pulled with two outs in the 4th at 64 pitches, equal to his career high.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Marvel
AA: Krauth
Hi-A: Stephan

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Round Rock’s Willie Calhoun collected his fifth multi-hit game of the month. “He doesn’t have a fit in Arlington with the roster as currently constructed,” I wrote in 2018, and upon seeing that I thought “who on the 95-loss 2018 Rangers was keeping him out?” The typical lineup in mid-May included an outfield of Gallo, DeShields, and Mazara, plus Choo at DH. Okay, then.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Thursday 11 May

Corey Seager hit a two-run double in three plate appearances for Frisco.

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 5, Oklahoma City (LAD) 9
Round Rock: 7 hits, 4 walks, 7 strikeouts
Opponent: 8 hits, 9 walks, 10 strikeouts
Record: 21-14, 3.5 GB

SP Cole Winn: 3.1 IP, 5 H (1 HR), 4 R, 4 BB, 4 SO, 81 P / 40 S, 7.88 ERA
RP Grant Anderson: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 SO, 3.97 ERA

OKC refused to offer at Cole Winn’s out-of-zone fastballs, of which there were many. Control was manageable until the 4th, when he walked three of his final four batters.

RF Rafael Ortega homered for the fourth time, and 3B Dio Arias hit his first.

Texas released RHP Stephen Villines, who’d been on the shelf for a year.

AA: Frisco 6, Wichita (MIN) 8
Frisco: 13 hits, 4 walks, 9 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 5 walks, 14 strikeouts
Record: 13-17, 4 GB

SP Jack Leiter: 5 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 8 SO, 89 P / 56 S, 4.35 ERA
2B Luisangel Acuna: 2-5, HR (3), .316/.374/.474
LF Dustin Harris: 3-4, HR (3), BB, 2 SB (13), .215/.366/.402
C Scott Kapers: 2-3, HR (4), HBP, .333/.389/.651

Did Jack Leiter pitch as well as last week? No. Did he pitch better than most of his pro outings? Very much so. Leiter again emphasized the fastball (65% of all pitches) and again dealt it effectively (70% strike rate). One of every six tallied a swinging strike.

Leiter started 13 of 19 batters with a strike. He didn’t throw more curves than sliders, but the curve received nearly equal billing and was more effective than usual. Leiter still tended to use it as a first-pitch strike grabber (seven thrown, four strikes). The slider was rare until the 4th. Relative to the curve, it missed more bats, but ten of 16 were balls. I saw one change for a swinging strike. At least, I think it was a change. I want very badly for it to be a change.

Two liners were scorched directly to waiting outfielders, and Yoyner Fajardo hit a ball at an otherworldly 117 MPH, fortunately on the ground. Still, all told, Leiter had another solid outing.

The bullpen did not. The bullpen has been a problem lately.

Hi-A: Hickory 4, at Bowling Green (TAM) 5
Hickory: 9 hits, 4 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 9 hits, 2 walks, 8 strikeouts
Record: 12-16, 8 GB

SP Kumar Rocker: 4.2 IP, 6 H (2 HR), 5 R, 1 BB, 5 SO, 69 P / 46 S, 3.86 ERA
RP Seth Clark: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 SO, 0.00 ERA
RP Jacob Maton: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 6.75 ERA
1B Josh Hatcher: 1-4, HR (6), .298/.359/.532
LF Geisel Cepeda: 2-4, .238/.368/.286

One out into the 5th inning, Kumar Rocker was cruising. He’s retired 13 batters on just 46 pitches, dealing 30 strikes including nine swinging. Most of the contact was gentle. Then, suddenly, Rocker ran into trouble, resulting in a strike rate barely over 50%, a walk, two balls over the fence, and a double off the track. Another hit (a single off a not-bad fastball) ended his night.

We’ve been here before. Rocker has pitched 27 full innings and parts of two others. 26 of those 29 were scoreless. 12 runs have scored in the other three. One of those three outings began a game, so it’s not as though he’s unable to recover.

By my count, Rocker missed four bats on fastballs, seven on sliders, and two on curves. Or should I say, “curves.” One pitch I’d marked as a curve was an 84 MPH slider per the announcer, but it and a handful of others lacked the down/glove-side action of his usual slider, so I’m calling it a curve based on its distinct shape. Regardless, it too was a useful pitch. Before his mini-meltdown, Rocker’s 19 breakers drew two calls, 13 swings, and nine swinging strikes. I saw one firm change that was taken outside.

Lo-A: Down East 2, Delmarva (BAL) 4
Down East: 6 hits, 3 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 2 hits, 6 walks, 11 strikeouts
Record: 17-11, 1 G up

SP Josh Gessner: 6 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 5 SO, 72 P / 45 S, 1.69 ERA
DH Yeison Morrobel: 1-3, BB, .185/.371/.185

I haven’t gotten a good look at Gessner this season, but neither have opposing hitters (.119/.286/.209), who have reached 16 times on walks or HBPs but collected only eight hits.

Yeison Morrobel is back from a brief IL stint.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Dugger
AA: White
Hi-A: TBD (Santos listed but is on the IL)
Lo-A: Officially TBD (Porter)

Five Years Ago Yesterday
I saw Frisco’s Brett Martin struggle in San Antonio (5 IP, 13 runners, 4 R), but after two balls to Fernando Tatis Jr., he dropped in two called-strike curves and then blew a fastball by Tatis for strike three. He also completed the other three strikeouts with changeups.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Wednesday 10 May

Texas has designated RHP Ian Kennedy for assignment and called up LHP John King. Kennedy has a 7.20 ERA but generally hasn’t been that bad, holding opponents to a .268/.326/.415 line. Specifically, however, 10 of his 15 runners allowed have scored, and he appeared prominently in dismal losses to Houston and Cincinnati. I haven’t mentioned King much this season because you’ve seen him and he is who he is. King has been okay in Round Rock: .286/.333/.343 opposing line, good control, not many strikeouts. On the downside, no Express pitcher has allowed a greater rate of balls hit 95+ MPH than his 51%. He also has an outstanding 64% grounder rate, so most of that hard contact results in groundouts or singles.

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 4, Oklahoma City (LAD) 6
Round Rock: 8 hits, 7 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 6 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 21-13, 2.5 GB

SP Lucas Jacobsen: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 0 SO, 37 P / 26 S, 5.11 ERA
RP Kyle Cody: 4.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 7 SO, 5.11 ERA
RP Taylor Hearn: 2.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 2 SO, 0.75 ERA
2B Justin Foscue: 2-4, BB, .288/.404/.500
LF Josh Sale: 1-4, HR (1)

Taylor Hearn is unscored upon in seven straight outings. Opponents are batting .171/.320/.171 without an extra-base hit, but he’s walked or hit nine in 12 innings.

Texas sent righty Nick Krauth back to Frisco and promoted lefty Grant Wolfram. Krauth escaped Reno unscathed in his AAA debut but surrendered a grand slam two nights ago at home. Wolfram has worse control but misses many more bats.

Texas also signed lefty Josh Dye to help Round Rock in relief. Per Statcast, Dye throws a bazillion changeups mixed with a slider. Fangraphs ranked him Kansas City’s #15 prospect in 2022, while other reports I’ve seen thought of him as an “under the radar” type. Dye has good control but was very homer-prone in AAA Omaha last year. KC released him last week.

AA: Frisco 8, Wichita (MIN) 16
Frisco: 16 hits, 6 walks, 6 strikeouts
Opponent: 18 hits, 11 walks, 8 strikeouts
Record: 13-16, 3 GB

SP Ryan Garcia: 2.2 IP, 7 H (2 HR), 8 R, 2 BB, 4 SO, 66 P / 39 S, 9.64 ERA
RP Hever Bueno: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 SO, 4.05 ERA
SS Luisangel Acuna: 1-3, 3 BB, .313/.373/.453
2B Thomas Saggese: 4-6, 2B, HR (1), .278/.331/.391
C Liam Hicks: 1-3, HR (1), BB, HBP
RF Trevor Hauver: 3-5, .228/.386/.316

On Education Day, visiting Wichita gave the kids an unpleasantly high slugging percentage calculation:
(11 singles + 3 doubles + 4 homers) / 42 at-bats = (11 + 3*2 + 4*4) / 42 = 33 / 42 = .786

I don’t know what’s up with Nick Starr (1.2 IP, 7 runners, 4 R). He’s already allowed more runs and hits than all of 2022 (which was only 30.1 innings because of injury and light use, but still). Starr was Frisco’s primary late-inning reliever from June onward last year.

Part of the Joey Gallo trade, Trevor Hauver continues to walk at an impressive rate, but his strikeouts have ballooned from 25% to 40% and taken his power with them.

Up to Frisco from Hickory is righty Michael Brewer (2018, 32nd round), who struck out 16 against three walks in 10.1 innings with a 2.61 ERA.

Hi-A: Hickory 2, at Bowling Green (TAM) 5
Hickory: 6 hits, 3 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 12 hits, 0 walks, 6 strikeouts
Record: 12-15, 8 GB

SP Mitch Bratt: 4 IP, 7 H (2 HR), 3 R, 0 BB, 1 HBP, 3 SO, 72 P / 48 S, 3.48 ERA
RP Florencio Serrano: 3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 1 HBP, 2 SO, 3.00 ERA
CF Daniel Mateo: 1-4, HR (3), .263/.280/.453
1B Josh Hatcher: 1-4, HR (5), .300/.364/.511

Mitch Bratt entered the game with five homers allowed in 103.1 career innings. He’s walked only three all season.

Lo-A: Down East 2, Delmarva (BAL) 0
Down East: 8 hits, 4 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 4 hits, 4 walks, 10 strikeouts
Record: 17-10, 2 G up

SP Joseph Montalvo: 4 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 5 SO, 72 P / 37 S, 2.49 ERA
RP Luis Ramirez: 3.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 SO, 1.59 ERA
RP Jackson Kelley: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 1.50 ERA
C Tucker Mitchell: 1-3, 2B, BB, .368/.486/.561
LF Yosy Galan: 2-2, 2 BB, .284/.400/.554
2B Danyer Cueva: 2-3, BB, .265/.295/.361

2022 7th-rounder Luis Ramirez has been terrific outside one sketchy outing (4 BB and an HBP in 0.2 IP). Here’s video from yesterday. Against Joseph Montalvo, opponents have reached 16 times on HBPs or walks but only eight times on hits.

Tucker Mitchell’s production hadn’t impressed prior to 2023. He batted .185/.325/.319 in 43 games with Down East last year. Now 22, he was Texas’s 14th-round pick in 2021.

Yosy Galan should spend a decent part of the season at Hickory if he keeps up this pace. He spent all of 2022 at Down East.

Texas released OF Jeferson Espinal from Down East and IF Keithron Moss and C Ismael Padua from the complex league. Moss was signed in late 2017 with some of the money intended for Shohei Ohtani. Moss had some power, patience, and speed, but contact was a persistent problem.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Winn
AA: Leiter
Hi-A: Rocker

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Hickory’s Bubba Thompson clubbed his first full-season homer.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Tuesday 9 May

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 1, Oklahoma City (LAD) 4
Round Rock: 5 hits, 4 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 8 hits, 4 walks, 10 strikeouts
Record: 21-12, 1.5 GB

SP Cody Bradford: 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 7 SO, 90 P / 61 S, 0.91 ERA
2B Justin Foscue: 2-2, HR (4), 2 BB, SB (5), .281/.397/.500
1B Blaine Crim: 1-3, BB, .295/.402/.453

Cody Bradford pitched well again. The change in particular was a menace: 23 thrown, 16 swings, eight misses. An uncommonly high portion of Bradford’s changes land within the strike zone, but with his spotless delivery and contrasted against his high-in-the-zone fastball, batters are unable to do much with it. Two of the hits were on the light side: A Yonny Hernandez grounder that snuck past  Davis Wendzel at shallow third, and a high, shallow fly that LF Sandro Fabian, CF Rafael Ortega, and SS Jonathan Ornelas lost in the twilight. Ortega ducked and covered his head; the ball landed 30 feet to his right.

Foscue reached safely four times. In his first trip up against top-100 prospect Gavin Stone, Foscue reached down to rocket a low slider 401 feet the other way at a 19-degree angle. He later stole his fifth base of the season. In his prior 163 career professional games, he also stole five, and he swiped only three in 139 college games. Foscue isn’t fast, not even in a “once he’s out of first gear” sense, but he seems to have developed a talent for taking advantage of what’s given.

In his first game of 2023, veteran catcher David Freitas hit a grand slam off Nick Krauth for all of Oklahoma City’s runs. Round Rock would have overtaken OKC for first place with a victory.

Catcher Promotion Day: Sam Huff to the Rangers, Jordan Procyshen to Round Rock, Liam Hicks to Frisco.

AA: Frisco 4, Wichita (MIN) 5 (10)
Frisco: 9 hits, 0 walks, 12 strikeouts
Opponent: 8 hits, 3 walks, 11 strikeouts
Record: 13-15, 3 GB

SP TK Roby: 6 IP, 6 H (1 HR), 4 R, 1 BB, 5 SO, 79 P / 49 S, 6.83 ERA
RP Grant Wolfram: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 SO, 1.88 ERA
RP Marc Church: 2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 2.08 ERA
RF Kellen Strahm: 2-4, HR (2), .231/.333/.363

Wichita scored the go-ahead run in the 10th on a flyout and groundout. The game ended when Evan Carter was thrown out at home attempting to score from third on a wild pitch. I don’t blame him for trying. The ball didn’t skitter away quite as far as it seemed it would, and the catcher made a terrific throw. Carter was 0-5 with three strikeouts yesterday and 1-17 over the last four. Carter’s relative quietness combined with Leody Taveras’s 118 OPS+ has temporarily quelled talk of getting Carter up to Arlington forthwith. That’s fine.

TK Roby is being BABIPed to death (.412 average on balls in play) but has also allowed 13 doubles, most in AA.

Hi-A: Hickory 1, at Bowling Green (TAM) 12
Hickory: 1 hit, 2 walks, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 14 hits, 6 walks, 7 strikeouts
Record: 12-14, 7 GB

SP Larson Kindreich: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 2 SO, 65 P / 30 S, 4.32 ERA

Daniel Mateo’s game-starting single was Hickory’s only hit. The Crawdads would place five others aboard by various means and score one.

Hickory IL’ed RHP Winston Santos. Florencio Serrano has replaced him.

Lo-A: Down East 8, Delmarva (BAL) 2 (6)
Down East: 10 hits, 5 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 3 hits, 4 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 16-10, 1 G up

SP Dylan McCarty: 4.1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 1 HBP, 7 SO, 69 P / 39 S, 1.23 ERA
1B Abi Ortiz: 1-2, HR (4), 2 BB, .279/.366/.500
LF Yosy Galan: 1-4, HR (5), .264/.372/.542
CF Anthony Gutierrez: 2-3, BB, .282/.333/.353
3B Gleider Figuereo: 1-4, HR (2), .171/.308/.289
2B Danyer Cueva: 2-2, BB, .250/.274/.350
SS Cam Cauley: 2-3, 2B, SB (7), .247/.309/.356

After a slow start, Down East has averaged 7.3 runs per game in the last two-plus weeks and leads the league with 22 homers.

Anthony Gutierrez leads the organization in grounder rate (66%) and pull rate (60%). Last year, he was near the middle of the Texas pack in both categories. He’s having a nice enough season so far, but as you might guess, his power is down compared to last year.

Today’s Starters
AAA: Kyle Cody
AA: Ryan Garcia
Hi-A: Mitch Bratt
Lo-A: Joseph Montalvo

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Nomar Mazara (MLB), Charles Leblanc (hi-A), and Tyreque Reed (lo-A) hit walk-off homers, and Hanser Alberto (AAA) hit a walk-off three-run double. Reed’s homer came as a pinch-hitter in his 2018 and full-season debut.