Stars of the Day:
AAA: Chad Bell / Brad Nelson, Luis Martinez
AA: Jake Brigham / Engel Beltre, Mike Olt, Jared Hoying
Hi-A: Wilmer Font / Odubel Herrera, Christian Villanueva, Vin DiFazio
Lo-A: Andrew Faulkner / Trever Adams, Zach Cone, Chris Grayson, Jorge Alfaro
Short-A: Richard Alvarez / Royce Bolinger, Guy Edmonds, Hirotoshi Onaka
Rookie: the offense AAA: at Round Rock 1, Omaha 4
Record: 42-60, -18.0
Rehabbing Mitch Moreland was 1-3 with a looking strikeout. His hamstring wasn't tested, as he never had to run faster than a medium jog.
The last time I saw Chad Bell (4.46 ERA), he shut out the Zephyrs for six innings. He performed similarly last night despite eventually allowing four runs. Bell gained a tick on his fastball (meaning 87-91 on the fastball) but thrived mostly on his change and corkscrewing slider, both of which challenged many of the Storm Chasers. Bell fanned highly regarded KC prospect Wil Myers looking on a slider in the 4th. In the 6th, Myers deposited a hanging slider into the left-field seats for his 29th homer. Bell left in the 7th after letting his first two batters reach. Both would eventually score on an exceptionally tepid slider from Yoshi Tateyama, who otherwise pitched well (2 IP, 0 R). All told, Bell walked one, struck out five and allowed seven hits.
DH Brad Nelson singled and hit his 17th homer. Nelson has six homers in his last nine games and has been carrying the offense on his broad shoulders lately. Catcher Luis Martinez was 2-3 with a walk.
Neftali Feliz will rehab tonight, piggybacked by Justin Grimm. AA: Frisco 11, at Corpus Christi 3
Record: 12-18, -8.0
3B Mike Olt hit his 26th homer, singled and walked.
Most homers in the Texas system, 2007-2012:
Nelson Cruz, 37
Chris Davis, 36
Ian Gac, 32
John Mayberry, 30
Mike Bianucci, 30 (2011)
Mike Bianucci, 30 (2009)
Mauro Gomez, 28
Taylor Teagarden, 27
Nate Gold, 26
Chad Tracy, 26 (2011)
Chad Tracy, 26 (2009)
Mike Olt, 26
Engel Beltre was 3-4 with a walk and his 26th and 27th steals. Beltre was also named Texas League player of the week. Jared Hoying (.307/.355/.426) was 2-4 with his third AA homer.
Jake Brigham (4.50 ERA) had his best start in quite some time, throwing seven innings and allowing a run on four hits, three walks and five strikeouts. High-A: Myrtle Beach 5, at Salem 11
Record: 19-12, +2.0
Salem greeted Roman Mendez rudely in his return to the Carolina League. In four innings, Mendez (5.90 ERA) allowed seven runs in nine hits (including two homers), no walks and three strikeouts.
Wilmer Font has been moved to the bullpen, perhaps for workload control, perhaps to redirect his future. Bullpen use could hasten his advancement to Arlington. As I've mentioned, Font is already on his second option and will enter the spring of 2014 with none remaining, barring developments between now and then. In his first pen appearance, Font retired six straight, five via swinging strikeouts.
3B Christian Villanueva (.270/.338/.403) hit his ninth homer, singled and walked. 2B Odubel Herrera doubled twice and walked, and catcher Vinny DiFazio walked twice and singled. Low-A: at Hickory 8, Delmarva 1
Record: 18-13, tied for first
Hickory's third youngest-pitcher had his best day as a Ranger. 19-year-old Andrew Faulkner (4.37 ERA) allowed a single run on seven hits and a walk while striking out four in a career-high seven innings. Texas drafted him in last summer's 14th round.
LF Zach Cone (.251/.311/.437) walked twice and singled. Catcher Jorge Alfaro (.270/.331/.453) doubled, singled and stole his fifth base. CF Chris Grayson tripled and walked, and 1B Trever Adams doubled twice.
Jordan Akins (1-4) was caught twice stealing; he'd been successful in his prior 11 attempts.
1B Jhonny Gomez (.227/.360/.326) was promoted to Myrtle Beach. Short-A: Spokane 7, at Vancouver 12
Record: 12-26, -9.0, first half over
Vancouver obliterated poor Jose Valdespina (8.56 ERA), who allowed eight runs in just 1.2 innings. Richard Alvarez (3.91 ERA) let two inherited runners score but went on to pitch 4.1 scoreless innings with four strikeouts.
Catcher Guy Edmonds (.189/.238/.297) and CF Hirotoshi Onaka (.265/.390/.286) both walked twice and singled twice. LF Royce Bolinger (.233/.278/.302) was 3-5.
Diamondback-affiliated Yakima won the division title with a mundane 21-17 record. A very young Everett squad (Seattle) raced to a 28-10 record in the other division. Spokane's pythagorean record is 11-27, which is to say, the record isn't a fluke. Rookie: Rangers 21, Padres 14
Record: 14-12, -2.0
The teams combined for 35 runs, 39 hits, 12 walks, 5 reached-on-errors, 1 HBP, 1 reached-on-wild-pitch-after-strikeout, 5 other wild pitches, 2 passed balls, and 1 ejection. Most of the mistakes (including all the errors) belonged to the Friars.
3B Joey Gallo (.337/.483/.854) was 2-4 with a walk, double, and his 12th homer, fifth-most in Arizona League history. A knowledgeable observer said the ball landed on the concourse beyond the berm in right-center. Per Google Earth, that places Gallo's shot at around 470 feet. Gallo hit a confirmed 442-foot shot at Petco Park in 2011, so 470 feet in Arizona isn't out of the question. Gallo's subsequent plate appearance resulted in hit-by-pitch, resulting in an ejection for San Diego's Bryan Rodriguez.
LF Nick Williams, 1B Ronald Guzman and 2B Janluis Castro connected for three hits. Williams tripled and walked, and Castro doubled. RF Nomar Mazara was 2-4 with a triple and walk. Catcher Fernando Vivili doubled twice and walked.
Angelo Leclerc (6.35 ERA) allowed five runs in 1.2 innings. Five Years Ago Yesterday
Texas optioned Robinson Tejeda and recalled John Rheinecker. Trust me, the MLB transactions become more interesting in the upcoming days. For that matter, the entire system was a snoozefest on July 23, 2007. Today's Starters
AAA: Neftali Feliz
AA: Barret Loux
Hi-A: Kyle Hendricks
Lo-A: Nick Martinez
Short-A: Connor Sadzeck
Newberg Report (newbergreport.com)