Texas Rangers: Minor Leagues

Greenberg-led group to buy RoughRiders

June, 16, 2014
Jun 16
1:34
PM CT
Former Texas Rangers general managing partner Chuck Greenberg has led a group of local investors who now have an agreement to purchase the Frisco RoughRiders, the Rangers’ Double-A affiliate located in a suburb of Dallas.

Greenberg, who lives in the Dallas area, will own the club with current RoughRiders’ president Scott Sonju, purchasing the franchise from Mandalay Baseball Properties LLC. Greenberg is Chairman, CEO and managing partner of RoughRiders LP, a group of local investors who are acquiring the team. Sonju will continue to oversee the daily operations of the club.

Baseball America, in a story from April, estimated that the Greenberg group would end up paying more than $30 million for the team. The final terms of the deal were not disclosed.

It means that Greenberg will have ownership stake in two of the Rangers’ franchises as he also owns Class A Myrtle Beach.

“I love baseball and everything that goes into creating an affordable, enjoying family environment,” Greenberg said. “It’s why I’ve had so much fun with all the teams I’ve been involved with before. The fact that I live right down the road from Frisco made it extremely appealing. It’s a great franchise. Once Mandalay decided to sell their franchises involved, I was all over them seeing if we could work out a deal.”

Greenberg put together the ownership group, headlined by Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan, which bought the Rangers out of bankruptcy court in August 2010. Greenberg’s group outbid Jim Crane and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban the same season the Rangers made their first World Series appearance. Greenberg served as general managing partner until he departed during spring training in 2011, citing “somewhat different styles” with Ryan and co-chairmen of the board Ray Davis and Bob Simpson.

(Read full post)

Is Joey Gallo a star or a mirage?

June, 14, 2014
Jun 14
7:00
PM CT


Grantland recently featured a story on Rangers prospect Joey Gallo (The Most Interesting Man in the Minors) discussing the adjustments he's made this season and the record home run pace he's on. Among the highlights from the story:

• Joey Gallo's power has set him apart since the days when he batted cleanup behind Bryce Harper on club travel teams. He set state home run records in high school, tagged a name-brand pitching prospect with one of the longest home runs in Petco Park history at age 17, and led the minors with 40 often majestic round-trippers last season. “When you see him hit something, you won’t forget,” says Justin Mashore, the Rangers’ Triple-A hitting coach, who tutored Gallo at multiple minor league levels from 2012 to 2013. “You’ll tell your grandkids about when you saw him hit those home runs that everybody talks about.”

That home run pace hasn’t slowed this season: Gallo had mashed 23 homers while posting a .320/.459/.745 line across two levels. His superhuman hitting earned him a June 8 bump from Single-A to Double-A, where he has already delivered walk-off homer heroics. Gallo’s breakout has been the silver lining in the Rangers’ lost season, and he could be bashing balls into light towers in a big league ballpark near you next year.

• Gallo’s 6-foot-5, 235-pound frame is nearly Giancarlo Stanton–size, so he was never in danger of being underestimated because of his build. Yet PECOTA, Baseball Prospectus’s Nate Silver–developed projection system, couldn’t draw upon its dispassionate algorithms to cut through the bias and lay bare the abilities beneath. In Gallo’s case, PECOTA was just as uncertain as the scouts.

According to PECOTA, Gallo’s most comparable player prior to the 2014 season was Stanton, the Marlins outfielder who hits home runs farther than anyone else.

• Gallo struck out 78 times in 260 plate appearances in his 2012 post-draft debut. Last year with Hickory, he batted .245 — Cody Johnson's career average — and whiffed in 37 percent of his plate appearances, walking once for every 3.4 K’s. For context, last season’s major league leader, Carter, struck out 36.2 percent of the time. Since 1985, only three players (Mike Simms, Charlton Jimerson, and Josh Booty) have made the majors after a Class A season with a strikeout rate as high as Gallo’s, relative to the league.

• Among players with 25 or more measured batted balls (including fouls) — a pool of 31 A-ball batters in 2013, and 115 High-A hitters in 2014 — Gallo’s batted-ball speed was the best, and it wasn’t particularly close. For reference, the average exit speed among major league non-pitchers last season was 75.9 miles per hour, and Miguel Cabrera led the league at 84.9 … 0.8 mph slower than Gallo’s exit speed this season. With the aid of his revamped approach, Gallo has hit the ball harder this season than any major leaguer did in 2013, including the two-time MVP.

You can read Ben Lindbergh's entire story on Grantland here.

Joey Gallo, Alex Gonzalez monthly winners

June, 12, 2014
Jun 12
2:39
PM CT
Double-A Frisco third baseman Joey Gallo and right-handed starting pitcher Alex "Chi Chi" Gonzalez were named minor league player and pitcher of the month for May. Catcher Tomas Telis was named defender of the month and right-handed pitcher Phil Klein was the reliever of the month.

Gallo hit .326 in May with four doubles, a triple, 12 home runs, 26 RBIs, 26 walks, 26 runs in 28 games with Class A Myrtle Beach. He played well enough to earn a promotion to Double-A Frisco earlier this week. You can read about Gallo's first game in Frisco here.

Here's more on Gonzalez, Telis and Klein from the club's release:

Gonzalez, 22, went 4-0 with a 1.59 ERA (6 ER/34.0 IP) and 26 strikeouts against 10 walks over 5 starts with High-A Myrtle Beach in May. The right-hander also held Carolina League batters to a .179 average (22-123) during the month. The Oral Roberts product completed at least 7.0 innings in 3 of the 5 starts, including a career-best 8.0 shutout innings on May 3 vs. Frederick. Gonzalez also had a no-hitter broken up in the 7th inning of his start on May 20 at Frederick, earning his 5th consecutive win in that outing. He was promoted to Frisco on June 10 and allowed just one hit over 5.0 scoreless innings in his Double-A debut that night vs. Midland. Overall, Gonzalez has combined to go 6-2 with a 2.43 ERA (19 ER/70.1 IP) over 12 starts with Myrtle Beach and Frisco. The Florida native was selected in the first round (23rd overall) of the 2013 June draft and signed by Jay Eddings.

Telis, who turns 23 next Wednesday, appeared in 14 games behind the plate and started once at third base for the RoughRiders in May. Overall, Telis has played 31 games at catcher this season for Frisco and compiled a .990 fielding percentage (3 E/291 TC). He has also thrown out 15 of 55 (27.3%) would-be basestealers. At the plate, Telis is batting .328 (59-180) with 12 doubles, 2 triples, 2 home runs, and 27 RBI. The Venezuela native currently boasts the highest average in the Texas League after batting.369 (38-103) over 26 games in May.

Klein, 25, compiled a 0.71 ERA (1 ER/12.2 IP) and converted all 6 save opportunities over 9 relief appearances in May. The right-hander recorded 14 strikeouts against just 3 walks and limited opposing batters to a .122 average (5-41). Klein finished the month with 8.2 scoreless innings over his last 6 appearances, a scoreless streak that currently stands at 11.2 innings. The former Youngstown State Penguin has gone 3-0 with a 0.95 ERA (3 ER/28.1 IP) and 37 strikeouts over 20 relief appearances with the ‘Riders this season. He is currently tied for 4th in the Texas League with 7 saves. The Ohio native was selected in the 30th round of the 2011 June draft and signed by Roger Coryell.


Gallo's big blast starts Double-A tenure

June, 10, 2014
Jun 10
10:00
AM CT
Joey GalloBrian Westerholt/Four Seam Images/AP ImagesAt 6-foot-5 and 235 pounds, Joey Gallo certainly looks the part of a big league star.
FRISCO, Texas -- Texas Rangers third base prospect Joey Gallo is just 20 and has exactly one Double-A game under his belt, and already the exploits and expectations when it comes to his big bat are spreading like, well, injuries in Arlington.

OK, bad analogy.

But the point is that every coach, scout or player you talk to has a story to tell about the 6-foot-5, 235-pound infielder -- he’s listed at 205, but Gallo admits that was probably from his high school years -- selected in the supplemental first round (39th overall) of the 2012 draft. The same guy who leads all of minor league baseball with 62 home runs the past two seasons.

That’s why, when Gallo pummeled a fastball over a tree deep in foul territory at Dr Pepper Ballpark in his first at-bat Monday, you could imagine it one-hopping and hitting the apartment complex. If anyone is home and on the deck over there during batting practice, they'd better have a glove handy.

[+] EnlargeGallo
AP Photo/Brian Westerholt"I don't care about the stats too much right now," Joey Gallo said. "I just want to continue to develop."
And it's why, when Gallo stepped up to the plate with two on and two out in the bottom of the ninth of a tie game, the fans still in attendance thought something could happen, despite the fact that he was 0-for-4 with three consecutive strikeouts.

Jayce Tingler, the Rangers' minor league field coordinator, asked him a simple question as he grabbed his bat to head to the on-deck circle: "You going to do this, big boy?"

Gallo answered in the affirmative, then used his big bat for emphasis and crushed a 2-0 changeup high into the Texas sky, just shy of the scoreboard in left-center. It was an opposite-field shot that signaled his arrival in Double-A.

“It’s pretty huge," Gallo said of his first Double-A game. "I kind of knew going up to the plate. I said before I was taking pretty good swings. I ended up having a good opening debut.”

The walk-off start is only the latest ridiculous feat from the 20-year-old, who can't even celebrate it with a beer yet.

Joe Mikulik, who managed Gallo in Class A Myrtle Beach, talks about another opposite-field home run, this one hit over the scoreboard at what scouts call a pitcher’s park at the Pelicans’ home in South Carolina.

“That scoreboard is in left-center and is 400-plus [feet from home plate], and he hit it over that going the opposite way,” Mikulik said. “Other guys are smoking balls with everything they have, and it’s caught at the warning track.”

(Read full post)

Gallo hits walk-off homer in Double-A debut

June, 9, 2014
Jun 9
10:47
PM CT
FRISCO, Texas -- Joey Gallo made a dramatic entrance into the world of Double-A baseball Monday, blasting an opposite-field home run with two out and two on in the bottom of the ninth to give the Frisco RoughRiders a 7-4 victory.

Gallo, who was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts before his final at-bat, stepped out of the batter's box with a 2-0 count and had a feeling Midland right-hander Seth Frankoff might try to throw him a changeup.

"He ended up kind of hanging it," the 20-year-old Texas Rangers prospect said. "I was able to strike it to left-center.”

The ball landed just shy of the scoreboard on the berm in left-center and Gallo's teammates rushed onto the field. Gallo tossed his helmet in the air as his teammates jumped and celebrated with him.

Gallo didn't go directly back to the clubhouse after the homer. He signed a bunch of autographs, finally appearing well after his teammates. Before Gallo's at-bat, minor league field coordinator Jayce Tingler asked, "You going to do this big boy?"

Gallo answered yes and then went up and did it.

“It’s pretty huge," Gallo said about that kind of Double-A debut. "I kind of knew going up to the plate. I said before, I was taking pretty good swings. I ended up having a good opening debut.”

Joey Gallo eager to learn at the right pace

June, 9, 2014
Jun 9
5:45
PM CT
FRISCO, Texas -- Joey Gallo isn’t itching to work his way southwest toward Arlington any time soon.

For a 20-year-old prospect on the fast track toward the big leagues -- he’s already at Double-A Frisco before the halfway point of his second year in professional baseball -- he’s quick to point out he doesn’t have it all figured out yet.

“Obviously, I shouldn’t be in Arlington right now,” Gallo said to a handful of media in Frisco to see his Double-A debut. “I have a lot to work on and that’s why I’m here still and we’ll see how I handle Double-A. I have a lot of adjustments to make up here and hopefully I can make them quick.”

If the Rangers injuries have Gallo readjusting his timetable for arriving in the big leagues, he’s not letting on.

“Maybe some time next year,” Gallo said.

Gallo will start at third base and bat fifth in the lineup tonight, his first action in Frisco. He hit .323 for Myrtle Beach in the Carolina League and had 21 homers, tied for the most in all of professional baseball. He led the league in RBIs (50), runs scored (53), on-base percentage (.463), slugging (.735) and walks (51).

(Read full post)

Joey Gallo, 'Chi Chi' Gonzalez promoted to AA

June, 8, 2014
Jun 8
12:10
PM CT
ARLINGTON, Texas -- The big bat of Joey Gallo is getting closer to Globe Life Park in Arlington. The 20-year-old power hitter was promoted to Double-A Frisco on Sunday along with right-handed pitcher Alex "Chi Chi" Gonzalez.

Gallo, 20, has 21 homers, tied for the most in all of professional baseball. Nelson Cruz leads the big leagues with 21 homers for the Baltimore Orioles. Gallo leaves Class A Myrtle Beach as Carolina League leader in home runs, RBIs (50), runs scored (53), on-base percentage (.463), slugging (.735) and walks (51), and was third in hitting at .323.

Gallo led all of minor league baseball in home runs last year with 40.

Gonzalez, 22, led Myrtle Beach in wins and was tied among starters with a 2.62 ERA, good enough for fifth-best in the Carolina League. The No. 23 overall selection in 2013, Gonzalez has held opponents to a .222 batting average and has struck out 49 and walked 16 in 65 1/3 innings.

Gallo and Gonzalez were selected as Carolina League All-Stars.

Luke Jackson impressing scouts, coaches

April, 26, 2014
Apr 26
8:00
AM CT
Texas Rangers pitching prospect Luke Jackson is enjoying his share of success recently. He was named Texas League pitcher of the week last week and followed that up with 5 2/3 innings of perfect baseball Monday. The 22-year-old allowed three hits and struck out eight in seven shutout innings against Double-A San Antonio.

“I’ve got to command the fastball and cut down on my walks,” Jackson said. “The coaches talked to me about that this offseason and they wanted me throwing my offspeed stuff for strikes.”

So far, so good. Jackson has walked five batters in his first four starts. He had 59 walks in 128 innings last season.

Jackson said he felt he took a step forward last season, when he was asked to do something he didn’t want to do.

“Steve Mintz, my pitching coach last year [at Class A Myrtle Beach] forced me to throw a changeup the first five starts,” Jackson said. “I was mad I had to do it. But in the long run, it was the best thing. It gave me confidence to throw that pitch. It’s keeping people off my fastball.”

Now, Frisco pitching coach Jeff Andrews is having Jackson understand how to incorporate the pitch, along with his curveball, to give hitters different looks in various counts and situations.

“If you learn the changeup, you get a feel,” Andrews said. “He’s learned a comfortable grip and how to take velocity off it. Last year, he was actually pitching to it. At the time, it was fine because it was a pitch he was learning. But now, it’s a mix. You’ve got to put pressure on your fastball, make the curve productive and add the changeup. He’s a power pitching guy who’s adding secondary stuff as he goes. That’s the way to think about it.”

Jackson was the No. 12 prospect in the Rangers’ system, according to ESPN.com’s Keith Law, and he hasn’t disappointed. He’s certainly impressed the Rangers, as he’s getting Double-A hitters out and building off his solid Class A numbers in 2013.

What’s pleased Andrews is Jackson’s mental side. He thinks through games well and is willing to put the work in to improve.

“You get in the development part and your emphasis is on getting better and putting that into games,” Andrews said. “The flip side is you’ve got to compete and try to get hitters out and perform well. He’s been able to put one aside when he’s pitching in a game and bring that back out when he’s practicing on side days and flat ground days.

“Lots of young pitchers can paralyze themselves mentally in games because of that, but he’s able to separate,” Andrews said.

Jackson is scheduled to pitch tonight in Corpus Christi.

Matt Harrison pitches well in rehab start

April, 8, 2014
Apr 8
2:28
PM CT
FRISCO, Texas -- Texas Rangers pitcher Matt Harrison was clearly more pleased with how his rehab start went Tuesday as opposed to last week’s rain-shortened affair. He hopes it puts him on track to return to the big leagues later this month.

The left-hander threw 62 pitches Tuesday for Double-A Frisco and lasted 4 2/3 innings, allowing one run. His fastball, clocked between 89 and 91 mph, had good life and he had movement on his pitches. Harrison was able to change speeds well, recording a swinging strikeout on a changeup.

The lone run came near the end of his outing, as he gave up two doubles in the fifth inning.

“My timing was there for the most part,” Harrison said. “I got a little bit tired at the end there. I had to make some plays and was able to do that without any issues. It’s a step in the right direction. I just need to keep building off of this.”

Harrison is referring to several weakly hit ground balls where he had to charge off the mound and throw to first. He was able to record the outs without any trouble.

Harrison will throw a bullpen session in a few days and then pitch Sunday in Little Rock with Double-A Frisco.

Is it time for Colby Lewis to join rotation?

April, 7, 2014
Apr 7
9:00
AM CT
Colby Lewis pitched five innings in a Sunday start for Triple-A Round Rock, allowing four runs (two earned) on four hits. He had three walks, two strikeouts and a hit batter and threw 98 pitches (62 of them strikes).

SportsNation

How many games will Yu Darvish win this season?

  •  
    2%
  •  
    22%
  •  
    58%
  •  
    18%

Discuss (Total votes: 4,912)

Lewis, 34, has an out in his contract that allows him to get his release April 10 if he's not added to the big league roster. The Rangers are off that day. But they could certainly agree to bring Lewis up and start him this coming weekend at home against the Astros, likely replacing Joe Saunders in the rotation. And with Saunders nursing a sore ankle after it was hit by a hard-hit ball from Evan Longoria on Friday night in Tampa, perhaps the Rangers would have the option of putting Saunders on the disabled list and letting him get a rehab start or two in the minors before returning to the club.

But there are other possibilities and that could hinge on how Tanner Scheppers and Robbie Ross do at Fenway Park this week and whether the team feels moving one of them back to the bullpen (I would think Scheppers would go back ahead of Ross with Alexi Ogando's struggles) would make more sense than simply moving Saunders out.

Lewis didn't dominate in either of his last two starts, though he got his arm strength up and hasn't had any physical issues with the hip this spring. The results weren't stellar, but does that mean the club tries to see if Lewis is willing to pitch one more time in the minors and then join the club instead of taking the opt-out? We'll see.

But one thing I can't see happening is letting Lewis leave. If he's intent on joining the big club now, let him take Saunders' place in the rotation for now and then figure out the options from there. Stay tuned. The club and Lewis don't have to make that call for a few days.

Rain cuts short Matt Harrison's rehab start

April, 3, 2014
Apr 3
9:23
PM CT
FRISCO, Texas -- Mother Nature wrecked the plan for Matt Harrison to throw 65 pitches or four innings in Double-A Frisco's season opener on Thursday.

Still, Harrison did throw 41 pitches in two-plus innings of work. He went to the mound to start the third in a 2-2 game and gave up a double before the rain washed out the rest of his start and the game.

But Harrison did throw a bunch of warm-up pitches, so he figured he got more than 65 in all together for the outing. And it hasn't changed his goal of returning to the rotation April 23.

Harrison gave up two runs in a 31-pitch first inning that included three extra-base hits and a walk after the lefty got the first two batters of the game.

"I don't know if I relaxed or what after those first two outs," Harrison said. "But I lost the strike zone for a few batters. But I got my tempo back."

He had a perfect second inning, needing just nine pitches (eight of them strikes). But once the rain came, that was it.

It's unclear now if the Rangers will keep Harrison on his same schedule. But since the plan was for him to throw 65 pitches and four innings again, he could just continue as scheduled and pitch in Frisco on Tuesday.

Harrison admitted disappointment in his velocity, which was 88-92 mph, though mainly in the 89-90 mph range. That was down from the 90-93 mph he was throwing before leaving Arizona. Part of that could be simply his mechanics were a bit off in windy conditions Thursday.

"Nothing I can do about Mother Nature," Harrison said. "Every start, in between, everything has felt great."

Harrison fell behind the other pitchers after sleeping on a soft mattress in spring training and experiencing some back tightness. He was checked out by Dr. Drew Dossett, who handled both of Harrison's back surgeries last year, and there was no major issues. Harrison hasn't had any physical problems since that point and continues to work toward building arm strength.

Matt Harrison starts Frisco opener Thursday

April, 1, 2014
Apr 1
12:22
PM CT
Texas Rangers left-handed pitcher Matt Harrison will start for Double-A Frisco on Opening Day, which is Thursday at 7:05 p.m. at Dr Pepper Ballpark in Frisco. The RoughRiders face the Northwest Araknsas Naturals.

Harrison, who fell behind the other pitchers at spring training after sleeping on a soft mattress and experiencing back and neck tightness in February, will continue his rehab assignment with the start. He is scheduled to go four innings after pitching three innings in an exhibition against the Houston Astros on Friday.

Harrison likely needs a few more starts, every five days, before he could join the rotation. But that could mean sometime in the final week of the month, if he has no setbacks. The 28-year-old made just two starts early last season before needing two back surgeries and missing the rest of the season. He had a third surgery to alleviate Thoracic Outlet Syndrome.

Harrison had an MRI on his back in spring and there were no issues and he hasn’t had any difficulty throughout the spring since that point.

Thursday is the first of a six-game homestand for the RoughRiders to open the 2014 season.

Odor gets chance to learn from big leaguers

February, 4, 2014
Feb 4
9:30
AM CT
An invitation for a prospect who isn't on the Rangers' 40-man roster should be considered an honor and an opportunity. And Rougned Odor is getting that chance this season.

Odor, the No. 64 overall prospect according to ESPN.com's Keith Law, was invited Monday -- his 20th birthday -- and will join a handful of other prospects, along with the major league regulars and those hoping to win a job on the roster when spring training kicks off in a few weeks.

SportsNation

Should Russell Wilson attend Rangers spring training?

  •  
    65%
  •  
    35%

Discuss (Total votes: 3,189)

"Rougned earned it with how he played during the 2013 season between Myrtle Beach, Frisco and in the Venezuelan Winter League this offseason," said Mike Daly, senior direction of minor league operations. "Major league camp will be great opportunity and he is looking forward to it."

Odor was the club's minor league player of the year after hitting .305 with 41 doubles, six triples, 11 homers and 78 RBIs in 130 games with Class A Myrtle Beach and Double-A Frisco. He had 32 stolen bases, the most of his career.

"We feel he can handle (spring training) physically and mentally," general manager Jon Daniels said. "(Jurickson) Profar and (Luis) Sardinas are coming by way of being on the 40 and we felt Odor deserved to be there with them. Plus, this gives Wash and the staff time to work with him, and see what he can do."

Daniels noted that being around Adrian Beltre won't hurt. Beltre, one of the club's key leaders and consistent hitters, has helped other young infielders (see Elvis Andrus and Profar) while in Texas and will get a chance to spend time with Odor.

Q&A with Keith Law on Rangers prospects

January, 30, 2014
Jan 30
10:45
AM CT
ESPN.com’s Keith Law, our MLB prospect guru and a very busy man these days, chatted with me for a few minutes this morning about his top-10 Rangers list and what he expects from some of the club’s prospects in 2014. You can see Law's top-10 here (insider) and read what he wrote about it (these questions are about some of the guys that he didn't really go into detail about in his write-up).

RD: It seems the Rangers take a broad view of collecting as many high-end assets as they can, regardless of position. Do you like that approach?

Law: I do. I like the fact that they “go for it” in the farm system. They have a good big league club without a ton of holes and they build wherever they can at the farm level. I had a GM tell me one time that his team was looking for stars because they were a competitive team. I think it’s the same for the Rangers. You can’t just be OK and play for the Rangers. They have too good a team. You have to be exceptional.

They’ve focused on guys that can be exceptional. That’s why you get Joey Gallo. I know his flaws and I’ve seen his flaws, but if he clicks, it’s a monster. He could hit 40 homers and drive in 100 runs for you. He can do so many things with his bat. That’s the kind of player the Rangers should go after. They shouldn’t target low-ceiling guys. They won’t play for the Rangers in the big leagues otherwise and their trade value isn’t that high. If you’re a high-revenue, high-payroll team, you should be going for high-ceiling guys. The Rangers do that.

RD: It appears that the Rangers got even better value in the Craig Gentry trade than I thought. I’ll admit that I didn’t expect to see Chris Bostick in your top-10 at No. 6. He wasn’t a guy you had in the A’s top-10 lists the past few years.

Law: I’ve loved him when he was in the A’s system and I had him as a sleeper prospect a few years ago. He’s got a great swing, good approach at the plate, can really run and is an above-average defender at second base. In the Rangers’ system, they have (Jurickson) Profar and (Rougned) Odor ahead of him, but it’s an asset with value. Maybe he becomes a tradable guy for them because he’s blocked and could be a good player for someone else. He’s got the swing discipline, the swing and attitude to end up an above-average second baseman.

RD: Who will you be keeping your eye on in particular this year, outside of Jorge Alfaro and Odor, who made your top-100 overall list (Alfaro is 44 and Odor is 64)?

Law: Lewis Brinson is a guy I’m interested in seeing this year. He’s done such a great job of cleaning up his swing. He needed a lot of work when he came in, and they did so much with him in such a short period of time. You can’t teach that kind of hand speed at the plate. He went to (Low-A) Hickory, and I know the strikeouts were high, but the Rangers decided to send him and Gallo there and see what they could do and challenge them. I like that. They didn’t fail. Brinson and Gallo have things to work on, but there was production. I’m dying to see what both of these kids will do.
I think they (the Rangers) did it right. They did well enough that I’d send them up a level this year. I wouldn’t send them back to Hickory, I’d push them up. Be mindful: There may be a point where you have to slow them down. But let’s see what they do.

Brinson is the one where I may look at every year until he’s 25 years old and think that it’s going to happen. You bet on kids with that kind of athleticism and the fact that he has the aptitude in center. When guys show feel in one aspect of the game, I feel like they’ll pick it up in another aspect.

RD: Should Rangers fans expect Cody Buckel to bounce back? (He was No. 3 on your Rangers’ top-10 prospects list last year and No. 90 overall)

Law: Who was the last guy to have the yips and come back? I think Mark Wohlers had it and came back a little bit afterwards, but it doesn’t happen often. I feel terrible for the kid. You hear that about a young pitcher and it’s tough to hear. It’s tough to know where it comes from and there are so many theories. I hope he’s an exception. I wouldn’t even put him in a top-20 list right now because history says he’s got a tough go.

LHP Pedro Figueroa claimed off waivers

January, 29, 2014
Jan 29
3:16
PM CT
The Texas Rangers claimed left-handed pitcher Pedro Figueroa off waivers from the Tampa Bay Rays and designated right-handed pitcher Chaz Roe for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster.

Figueroa was put on waivers after the Rays signed Grant Balfour. They had originally claimed him off waivers from the Oakland A's earlier in the month. Figueroa, 28, has made 24 relief appearances for the A’s the over the past seasons, allowing four runs over three innings (five outings) with Oakland in 2013. He was 3-4 with a 4.10 ERA and two saves in 59 1/3 innings pitched last season at Triple-A Sacramento. Between the majors and minors last year, Figueroa held left-handed batters to a .229 average.

Roe, 27, made his big league debut with the Diamondbacks last season and was 1-0 with a 4.03 ERA in 21 games. Texas has 10 days to trade, release or outright Roe to the minors.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Colby Lewis
WINS ERA SO IP
10 5.18 133 170
OTHER LEADERS
BAA. Beltre .324
HRA. Beltre 19
RBIA. Beltre 77
RA. Beltre 79
OPSA. Beltre .879
ERAC. Lewis 5.18
SOY. Darvish 182