The Farm Report -- 7/22/2014

Rangers Farm Report: Games of Monday 21 July

Stars of the Day
AAA: Reyes / Telis, Rua, Wilson
AA: Asker / Cantwell, Adams, Gallo
Hi-A: Faulkner, McElwee, Ege / Alfaro, Bolinger, Lyon
Lo-A: Leclerc, Valdespina / Mazara, Beras, Jackson, Castro
Short-A: Thompson, McCain / Trevino, Vivili
Rookie: Green / Day, Caraballo, Morgan

AAA: Round Rock 11, at Oklahoma City (HOU) 9
Record: 50-50, -2.0

SP Luke Jackson: 3.1 innings, 7 hits (1 HR), 6 runs, 3 walks, 2 strikeouts, 8.22 ERA
RP Jimmy Reyes: 2.2 scoreless innings, 1 runner, 7.94 ERA
C Tomas Telis: 3-4, double, triple, walk, .471/.550/.706
LF Ryan Rua: 3-4, 2 homers
3B Josh Wilson: 3-4, double, triple

Rua's destruction of low-A in early 2012 had more than a whiff of apparent flukiness to it.  23-year-olds in their third professional seasons are supposed to dominate at that level.  He's since proven himself at AA and adjusted to AAA with ease, batting .296/.348/.531 in 21 games.

In all four of his AAA starts, Luke Jackson has burned through his pitches early, this time throwing 76 to retire 10 batters. 

AA: Frisco 6, at Midland (OAK) 1
Record: 16-14, -3.0

SP Alec Asher: 7.1 innings, 5 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts, 3.86 ERA
C Pat Cantwell: 3-5, double, .259/.335/.319
1B Trever Adams: 3-5, 11th homer, .274/.327/.443
3B Joey Gallo: 2-3, double, walk, .262/.354/.563
RF Drew Robinson: 2-4, double
LF Teodoro Martinez: 2-4, double

Gone, for at least one evening, was the inconsistent Asher who allowed 23 runs in his last four starts.  Asher retired 22 batters on an economical 88 pitches.  Gallo broke a streak of eight games without an extra-base hit.  Adams' 11 homers lead the team.  Cantwell began the season with two hits in eight games; since then, he's at .289/.364/.358.

High-A: at Myrtle Beach 5, Carolina 1

Record: 17-15, -2.0
Video recap

SP Andrew Faulkner: 5 innings, 3 hits (1 HR), 1 run, 0 walks, 7 strikeouts, 2.07 ERA
RP Cody Ege: 2 scoreless innings, 1 runner, 0 runs, 3 strikeouts, 4.01 ERA
RP Josh McElwee: 2 scoreless innings, 5 runners, 2 strikeouts, 0.00 ERA
C Jorge Alfaro: 2-4, double, .257/.314/.427
RF Royce Bolinger: 2-4, double
1B David Lyon: 1-3, 7th homer, walk

Faulkner finally allowed a homer in his 102nd inning of work.  Not to diminish his streak, but I wouldn't have expected it, because 1) he's a lefty in a park with a short porch in left (where the homer landed, in fact), 2) he's not excessively fly-averse, and 3) he'll occasionally get underneath and elevate his drop-and-drive fastball.  (Notably, the home run pitch wasn't elevated; DH James Roberts just guessed right.) All that said, he's become a legit prospect with his fastball that bores in on righties, slurvy curve and splitter.  Faulkner has allowed one or zero runs in 11 of his last 12 starts. 

Low-A: Hickory 10, at Greensboro (MIA) 4

Record: 17-15, -4.0

SP David Ledbetter: 5 innings, 6 hits, 3 runs, 0 walks, 3 strikeouts, 6.31 ERA
RP Angelo Leclerc: 3 innings, 3 runners, 1 run, 4 strikeouts, 2.79 ERA
RP Jose Valdespina: 1 perfect inning, 3 strikeouts
RF Nomar Mazara: 2-4, walk
LF Jairo Beras: 2-5, double, 5th homer
DH Joe Jackson: 2-5, triple
3B Janluis Castro: 3-3, double, walk

Four consecutive two-hit games for Mazara, who pushed his July line up to .300/.402/.557.  Nathaniel Stoltz of led off his "toolsy outfielders" column with Ryan Cordell.  Ordinarily, a 22-year-old outfielder from a small college wouldn't fit that description, but Stoltz likes his athleticism and across-the board no-worse-than-average average tools.  Based on what I saw in Surprise, I thought he'd be Hickory-bound on Opening Day, but he had to wait a month.

Short-A: at Spokane 3, Everett (SEA) 0
Record: 25-13, first-half division champion

SP Derek Thompson: 7 innings, 3 hits, 0 runs, 2 walks, 10 strikeouts, 3.64 ERA
RP Shane McCain: 2 scoreless innings, 1 runner, 2 strikeouts, 0.54 ERA
3B Jose Trevino: 1-3, 8th homer, .309/.350/.564
1B Fernando Vivili: 2-3, double, .231/.276/.361

Sitting on a magic number of four with eight games to play, Spokane found itself needing a win to clinch the division on the final day of the first half after Vancouver won earlier in the day.  Derek Thompson, Texas's 2013 12th rounder, responded with his best performance as a professional.  Thompson led off the 5th with eight straight balls for his two walks, after which he retired nine of ten.  Spokane doesn't hit lefties especially well but squeezed out a first-inning run off LHP Ryan Yarbrough via singles from Isaiah Kiner-Falefa (1-4) and Marcus Greene (1-4).

Rookie: at Rangers 3, Mariners 5
Record: 17-6, +6.5, first-half champion

SP Luke Lanphere: 3 innings, 5 hits, 3 runs, 0 walks, 4 strikeouts, 3.27 ERA
RP Joseph Ortiz (rehab): 1 scoreless inning, 1 runner, 1 strikeout
RP Nick Green: 3 scoreless innings, 1 runner, 3 strikeouts, 1.65 ERA
RF Darius Day: 3-5, .414/.528/.621 in nine games
1B Oliver Caraballo: 2-4, 2 doubles

The only losing squad in the system. Even Texas's two Dominican teams won.  Although solid offensively, the Rangers have only six homers in 23 games, or 12 fewer than Joey Gallo alone in 2012.  Six hitters have one apiece.

Five Years Ago Yesterday
I described Justin Smoak as "look[ing] awfully ordinary while visiting greater Austin last weekend" but still drawing walks and not striking out too much.  Spokane's Robbie Ross fanned seven in five scoreless innings, giving him a league-leading 48.  (Derek Thompson currently ranks second at the same level with 42.)

Today's Starters
AAA: Robbie Ross
AA: Jerad Eickhoff / Martire Garcia
Hi-A: Victor Payano
Lo-A: off
Short-A: Reed Garrett
Rookie: Luis Ortiz

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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