The Farm Report -- 8/23/2013

Rangers Farm Report: Games of 8/22

Neftali Feliz struck out one in a clean, nine-pitch 8th inning at Round Rock.

Stars of the Day
AAA: Richmond / Butler, Beltre, McGuiness
AA: Martinez, Bleier, Bonilla / Nicholas, Sardinas
Hi-A: McElwee / Robinson
Lo-A: Gallo, Alfaro, Torres
Short-A: Sprenger / Cordell
Rookie: Bostick, Gardewine

AAA: at Round Rock 12, Oklahoma City (HOU)  3
Record: 70-63, -6.0, elimination number 6

The Express pinned a double-digit number on the board in the 6th, during which Chris McGuiness hit a grand slam (his 10th homer) and Engel Beltre hit a three-run shot (his sixth).  Joey Butler reached on two walks, a hit-by-pitch and single.  Scott Richmond allowed three runs in seven innings.

AA: Frisco 2, at San Antonio (SDG) 1 (10 innings)

Record: 63-66 overall, eliminated

Through three innings, Nick Martinez and San Antonio lefty Juan Oramas didn't allow a runner.  Oramas succumbed to a Rougned Odor walk in the 4th, and Martinez left a fastball up to Lee Orr for a two-out single. 

You might recall that Don Welke mentioned Martinez as one to watch during last year's Newberg Night event.  Martinez certainly backed Welke up on Thursday, lasting seven innings and 97 pitches (71 for strikes), allowing a run on three hits and a walk while striking out four. Martinez mixed a 90-93 MPH fastball, 80-87 changeup and 76-82 curve.  His fastball doesn't have a ton of movement and can't match Luke Jackson's velocity, but he does command it very well, consistently hitting low and on the corners.  After a couple of shaky offerings in the first, his changeup quickly became a potent weapon, inducing eight swinging strikes of his 14 total.  With two highly effective pitches, San Antonio's hitters guessed their way into some ugly swings, much to the chagrin of the Thirsty Thursday crowd.  Martinez's 12-6 curve lagged behind the other pitches.  He never quite developed a feel for it, though none came back to haunt him.  Nevertheless, he was impressive overall. 

Here's video of Martinez at work.

After two scoreless innings from Richard Bleier, Lisalverto Bonilla struck out two in the 9th.  Bonilla has been a statistical wonder since dropping back to AA, fanning 41 in just 25 innings, but the two times I've seen him have been a bit unsettling despite the results.  Bonilla dropped some outstanding changes, as always, and mixed in a handful of 93-95 fastballs with terrific movement.  He also nearly beheaded Yeison Asencio with an errant fastball.  Against Everett Williams, he started with a change and slider, both of which drifted in mid-plate above the belt.  Fortunately, Williams offered at neither and took two called strikes.  Bonilla's slider wasn't functional. 

Frisco turned 12 baserunners plus four stolen bases into just two runs, but they were enough.  With none out in the 10th and Tomas Telis on second, Teodoro Martinez faked a bunt and slapped a grounder past first, but Telis was gunned down at the plate by rocket-armed RF Asencio.  In the 9th, Frisco had runners on first and third, but both were tagged out on a grounder to third.  SS Luis Sardinas was 2-5 with a double, and 1B Brett Nicholas went 3-4.

Texas disabled pitcher Tyler Tufts, activated reliever Phil Klein and received catcher Zach Zaneski back from Round Rock.

High-A: at Myrtle Beach 3, Salem (BOS) 10
Record: 34-26, +0.5

Salem scored seven against Nick McBride (3.20 ERA) on 12 hits and a walk in 5.2 innings.  Josh McElwee struck out two in 2.1 scoreless innings.  McElwee has struck out 27 in 28 innings at high-A, down from the staggering figures he posted in Spokane and Hickory but still quite respectable.  3B Drew Robinson (.248/.363/.388) doubled twice and singled. 

Low-A: Hickory 4, at Asheville (COL) 7

Record: 73-57 overall, -0.5

Hickory scored four on homers by Joey Gallo (31), Jorge Alfaro (14) and Kevin Torres (1).  Torres also singled, and Gallo walked.  Nomar Mazara was 0-3 with a walk but threw out two runners on the bases from right field. 

Asheville tagged Andrew Faulkner (3.29 ERA) for 13 hits and seven runs (five earned) in 5.2 innings.  Faulkner struck out one and walked one.

Hickory's offense has tied the Sally League records of 1,309 strikeouts set by Greensboro in 1998.  The Crawdads need ten homers in their final ten games to match Macon's 1998 mark of 173 long balls.

Short-A: at Spokane 2, Tri-City (COL) 7

Record: 33-33 overall, -1.0

Ryan Cordell's fourth homer highlighted an otherwise drab evening by the offense.  2012 2nd rounder Jamie Jarmon (0-3, 2 SO) dropped to .135/.202/.177 in 30 games with Spokane.  18-year-old OF Eduard Pinto (.281/.343/.281) singled twice. 

Collin Wiles (3.36 ERA) allowed four runs (two earned) on eight baserunners in five innings; he struck out three.  Justin Sprenger (4.68 ERA) fanned two in two perfect innings. 

Rookie: at Rangers 3, Giants 4
Record: 14-9, tied for 1st

Akeem Bostick (2.97 ERA) whiffed a career-high seven of 19 batters, allowing an unearned run on five innings on three hits and a walk.  Nick Gardewine (3.38 ERA) allowed three runs (one earned) in four innings.  He walked none and struck out two.  Offense was again dominated by elders, with rehabbing Greg Miclat, Travis Wrenn and Hirotoshi Onaka reaching nine times between them. 

Five Years Ago Yesterday
John Whittleman homered, walked twice and singled in his AA debut. 

Today's Starters
AAA: Josh Lindblom
AA: Jerad Eickhoff
Hi-A: Alex Gonzalez
Lo-A: Jose Monegro
Short-A: Ryne Slack
Rookie: TBA

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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