Rangers Farm Report: Games of Saturday 15 July

Box Scores

AAA: Round Rock 5, at Tacoma (SEA) 3 (12)
Round Rock: 9 hits, 6 walks, 11 strikeouts
Opponent: 6 hits, 3 walks, 20 strikeouts
Record: 10-4, tied for first, 54-34 overall

SP Chase Lee: 2 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 SO, 41 P / 27 S, 3.13 ERA
RP Fernery Ozuna: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 4.22 ERA
RP Alex Speas: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 SO, 2.35 ERA
RP Marc Church: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 3.78 ERA
1B Blaine Crim: 1-3, HR (13), BB, .279/.396/.511
LF Dustin Harris: 2-4, BB, .327/.471/.527
C Matt Whatley: 3-5, .240/.329/.312

The sextet of Edwin Colina, Fernery Ozuna, Jake Latz, Yerry Rodriguez, Alex Speas, and Marc Church combined for 9.1 no-hit innings with two walks and 15 strikeouts. They, Chase Lee and Winn combined for an astounding 52 swinging strikes, 25% of all pitches and 50% of swings. Proving whiffs aren’t the end but a means, Cole Winn tallied two swinging strikes with five different batters, but four of them reached safely.

52 swinging strikes is the most by the Express this season by a huge margin. Admittedly, the game lasted 12 innings, but in terms of whiffs per inning it was also the most. Round Rock missed 38 bats in an 11-inning game in April and 34 in another bullpen-oriented nine-inning contest nine days ago.

Alex Speas issued a very wild pitch to the first batter of the 10th, moving the game-winning runner to third. “Can you strike out the side before another wild pitch?” I asked him through the screen. He could. Speas is throwing more triple-digit pitches than anyone else on the Express by far, but the upper-90s cutter is troubling hitters the most. His overall strike rate is a solid 62%.

For a while, the game story was “Cole Winn surrenders three-run homer, Blaine Crim hits two-run homer, oh well.” In the 9th, Matt Whatley snuck a grounder through the infield and then scored on a game-tying JP Martinez double. The Express broke through again in the 12th.

Per club media, the Express haven’t been 20 games over .500 this early in a season since 2006 as a Houston affiliate. Texas’s best-ever AAA team was in 2011, 87-57 overall but “only” 58-40 after 88 games. The 2023 version is slightly better so far.

AA: Frisco 4, at Amarillo (ARI) 11
Frisco: 5 hits, 4 walks, 9 strikeouts
Opponent: 11 hits, 4 walks, 11 strikeouts
Record: 7-7, 2 GB, 38-44 overall

SP Nick Krauth: 3 IP, 7 H (4 HR), 9 R, 0 BB, 2 HBP, 6 SO, 64 P / 43 S, 6.59 ERA
RP Triston Polley: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 4.32 ERA
DH Aaron Zavala: 1-3, BB, .205/.361/.292

Frisco allowed five homers but had nary an extra-base hit of their own.

Hi-A: Hickory 0, Greenville (BOS) 5 (7)
Hickory: 2 hits, 0 walks, 9 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 5 walks, 7 strikeouts
Record: 13-3, 2.5 G up, 40-37 overall

SP Jose Corniell: 4.1 IP, 7 H (2 HR), 5 R, 3 BB, 3 SO, 72 P / 49 S, 4.15 ERA
RP Andy Rodriguez: 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 SO, 2.51 ERA

The game was shortened by rain but not enough for Jose Corniell’s taste. He suffered his worst start of the year.

Lo-A: Down East 2, Charleston (TAM) 11
Down East: 8 hits, 2 walks, 10 strikeouts
Opponent: 12 hits, 10 walks, 11 strikeouts
Record: 9-8, tied for first, 46-32 overall

SP Brock Porter: 4.1 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 5 BB, 4 SO, 68 P / 32 S, 2.57 ERA
CF Anthony Gutierrez: 1-3, BB, SB (16), .253/.321/.318

Brock Porter was a very particular type of effective, allowing one run despite some serious wildness even for him. He’s allowed 27 hits (only six for extra bases) but walked or hit 39.

Today’s Starters
AAA: White
AA: Bremer
Hi-A: Teodo

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Reliever John Fasola would missed the rest of the season with a knee injury suffered backing up home plate. He’d returned from Tommy John surgery three months before. Fasola received notice from scouts and other onlookers in his surprise AAA debut in a May 2016 day game at Round Rock. He’d been sent there straight from high-A High Desert just to help out for a few days before joining Frisco, and he struck out four of six batters. Following knee surgery, Fasola would throw only 14 more affiliated innings, all for the Cardinals.