The Farm Report -- 7/24/2013

I tweeted this last night:  "Inches off center of plate on the three Leonys strikes: 12.1, 13.9, 14.1."

After examining the entirety of Kerwin Danley's evening and history, let me provide some context.  As a rule, umpires call the strike zone wider than textbook and shave a little off the low end.  Danley certainly does.  He'd previously called two strikes that were wider than anything to Martin (one to Nelson Cruz, one against Ichiro), so the calls against Martin, while aggravating, weren't without precedent. 

If you're a Texas fan, direct your anger at the calls against Nathan, specifically the 2-1 called ball to Wells and the two "low" balls to Nunez.  Only three previous pitches had been thrown at that height within the zone, but all had been called strikes (one against Texas, two against New York).  Danley also called a strike of similar height against Melky Mesa after the damage had been done.  Based on how Danley and most umps operate, strikes in those locations aren’t guaranteed.  In the aggregate, Denley called three balls and four strikes, about what you should expect.  But, again, he'd called everything at that height a strike until Nathan took the mound.  Pitchers and players beg for consistency; Danley's vanished in the top of the 9th.

Nevertheless, I'd place Danley pretty low among reasons why Texas lost.

Here's the locations of his balls and called strikes from last night.

Rangers Farm Report: Games of 7/23

Jorge Alfaro was 3-4 with a homer for the rookies.  The baby Brewers succeeded on all of five stolen base attempts, and he had an error an two passed balls.  CF Joe Benson went 3-4 with a double.

Stars of the Day
AAA: Lindblom, Font / Chirinos, Butler
AA: Tufts, Henry
Hi-A: Asher / Adams, Robinson, Garcia, Beck, Skole
Lo-A: Parra
Short-A: Sprenger
Rookie: Gardewine

AAA: Round Rock 5, at Memphis (STL) 2
Record: 59-45, +1.0

Josh Lindblom (2.27 ERA) gave up two unearned runs in six innings on two hits, three walks and three strikeouts.  Wilmer Font walked one and struck out three in a hitless two innings.  Font has yet to allow a run in seven AAA innings.

Robinson Chirinos hit a two run homer (his sixth) and singled.  RF Joey Butler drew three walks.

AA: at Frisco 0, Midland (OAK) 1
Record: 13-19, -6.0

Tyler Tufts (3.32 ERA) allowed a run in five innings, and Randy Henry (0.74 ERA) worked a perfect 7th and 8th with one strikeout.

The offense: two hits (one of which was gunned down stretching for a double), no walks.  Frisco hitters have 36 fewer walks than any other full-season minor-league team. 

High-A: Myrtle Beach 10, at Lynchburg (ATL) 2
Record: 19-11, +3.0

Alec Asher (3.21 ERA) held the Hillcats to a run on four runners and struck out four in five innings.  Jon Edwards (3.66 ERA) tossed a scoreless 8th and 9th with two strikeouts. 

Unlike most of their farm brethren, the Pelicans scored at will.  Drew Robinson (.246/.363/.374) hit his fifth homer and drew three walks.  Both RF Preston Beck (.230/.327/.317) and CF Jake Skole (.223/.338/.335) singled twice and walked.  DH Trever Adams (.273/.357/.409) was 4-4 with three doubles.  2B Edwin Garcia doubled twice.

Low-A: at Hickory 1, Charleston (NYY) 5

Record: 16-15, -3.0

Luis Parra (1.88 ERA) wasn't at his best but managed to limit the RiverDogs to three runs (two earned) in six innings.  Parra allowed seven hits including three doubles, a huge number for him.  He's given up only 12 extra-base hits in 13 starts.

The offense: four hits, no walks.

Hickory has a badly needed day off that won't require a 50-hour bus trip to New Jersey.  The Crawdads visit nearby Kannapolis tomorrow.

Short-A: at Spokane 0, Vancouver (TOR) 2
Record: 0-1, -1.0 (second half)

Kelvin Vasquez pitched 3.2 scoreless innings despite five walks and a wild pitch.  He allowed three hits and struck out three.  Vasquez's control has slipped considerably from last summer in the Dominican Republic, but at this age and stage of his career, it's not too worrisome.  Justin Springer (6.39 ERA) fanned four in two scoreless innings.  The runs came against Abel de los Santos (4.58 ERA), who recorded eight of his ten outs via strikeout.

The offense: three hits, no walks.

Rookie: at Rangers 7, Brewers 5

Record: 16-11, +2.0

The rehabbers generated most of the offense.  DH Eduard Pinto had two singles, and 3B Travis Demeritte (.245/.383/.383) singled and walked.  Nick Gardewine (3.38 ERA) pitched best among a quartet of Rangers, yielding four runners and an unearned run in four innings while striking out four.  2nd-rounder Akeem Bostick (5.65 ERA) allowed three runs in two innings and fanned three.

Five Years Ago Yesterday
Yawn, Nelson Cruz hit his 34th homer.  I think I've mentioned before, but as to why Texas didn't call him up sooner: 1) He'd produced an MLB line of .231/.282/.385 in a not-insignificant 478 trips to the plate at a mature age, and 2) Texas had a respectable outfield quarter of Josh Hamilton, David Murphy, Marlon Byrd and Brandon Boggs plus Milton Bradley at DH. 

Today's Starters
AAA: Scott Richmond
AA: Neil Ramirez
Hi-A: Victor Payano
Lo-A: off
Short-A: Chi-Chi Gonzalez
Rookie: Jose Samayoa

Scott Lucas
Newberg Report  (
twitter: @scottrlucas


Jamey Newberg

Dallas attorney Jamey Newberg has been commenting on Rangers from the big club down through the entire farm system since 1998.

Scott Lucas

Scott Lucas was born in Arlington, Texas, to Richard and Becky Lucas. He lived mostly in Arlington before moving to Austin, where he graduated from The University of Texas. Scott works for Austin Valuation Consultants, Ltd., and has published several boring articles about real estate appraisal and environmental contamination. He makes a swell margarita and refuses to run longer than ten kilometres.

Eleanor Czajka

Eleanor grew up watching the AAA Mudhens in Toledo, Ohio. A loyal Ranger fan since 1979, she works "behind the scenes" at the Newberg Report.

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