Minor League Monday: July 15th

(AAA) Round Rock Express

Player of the week : Manny Ramirez

He’s certainly not a prospect anymore. His prime years are in the rear-view mirror. But it is worth mentioning his first 8 games as a member of the Rangers organization. In those 8 games, he’s hitting .300/.364/.600 with 3 home runs for Round Rock. Of course he’s playing in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League and the sample size is small, but he’s got something left in tank. Although his infamous dreadlocks are gone, Manny is still being Manny.

(AA) Frisco RoughRiders

Player of the week: Chih Hsien Chiang

Like Manny, he’s not a prospect at the age of 25. But the Taiwanese right fielder has a solid .340/.346/.500 line in 104 PA in the past 30 days.

His name is here for not only the numbers, but something notable that he did in last week. On Wednesday, at Corpus Christi, the Riders played 16 innings. This is not surprising because these 2 teams have played 1,432 extra inning games in 2013. Maybe I’m hyperbolic on the number, but they actually went 13 innings on Friday and 11 innings on Saturday. They’re prone to play long baseball games, right?

Anyway, on Wednesday, Chiang relieved Zach Zaneski, a catcher who actually pitched in the 16th inning. He walked the leadoff hitter, then got 2 outs, then gave up a single and walked another to load the bases. And finally, he threw the ball into the dirt and it past the catcher, the game-winning run scored. Chiang become the losing pitcher of the game.

(High-A) Myrtle Beach Pelicans

Player of the week: Luis Sardinas

The 20-year old, switch hitting Venezuelan shortstop’s past calendar month is stellar. In his last 23 games, Sardinas is hitting a solid .344/.417/.444 in 103 PA, including his lone dinger this season.

Baseball Prospectus’ Jason Parks mentioned Sardinas in the latest edition of Fringe Average Podcast. According to the professor, Sardinas “has more tools than Jurickson Profar. He’s very good and disciplined at the plate, but he’s got a lot of slack and that’s a problem.” Parks also added “To consider that and the Rangers’ organizational depth at middle infield, Sardinas could be one of the key trade pieces at the trade deadline.”

Keep an eye on him, guys.

(Low-A) Hickory Crawdads

Player of the week: C.J Edwards

Edwards is a 21-year old right hander drafted out of South Carolina in the 48th round in the 2011 amateur draft. He had a breakout year in 2012, and keeps shining on the mound in 2013.

So far this season, Edwards has struck out 113 while walking 31 in 89.1 innings. Opponent hitters’ line against him is microscopic .192/.270/.240. He’s not given up a HR, not only in 2013, but in his entire career.

With the Rangers’ lack of frontline starter prospects in the organization, Edwards’ value could be premium in the system. Stay tuned.

(Short Season-A) Spokane Indians

Player of the week: David Ledbetter

The right handed pitcher was drafted by the Rangers in 3rd round in this year’s amateur draft, along with his twin brother Joseph, who was drafted in 19th round. So far in the month-old 2013 SS-A season, he’s struck out 20, walked 3, good for a 6.67 K/BB ratio in 20 innings. He’s given up only 4 runs and is holding the opponent to a .207/.235/.329 line. I know he’s old for the level, but the numbers look solid.

Also, with his plus last name, I bet Shoopy would name him “Ledbetter Call Saul” if he ever makes it to the big leagues.

(Rookie) Arizona Rangers

Player of the week: Jairo Beras

Everyone remembers him for famously faking his profile with 2 birth certificates. He was suspended for a year for the act, and recently got back to organizational action on July 2nd. As of writing this article, Beras has played 10 games. He’s hitting .275/.326/.475 with a HR in 43 PA in the Arizona League. His .801 OPS belongs in the median range in the league, but to consider his age (2nd youngest in AZL), he’s playing well in his (literally) young career.

Kazuto Yamazaki is a Staff Writer for ShutDownInning.com. He can be reached on Twitter@LaBlynne or at lonestarfastballer@yahoo.com
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Kazuto Yamazaki
Grew up in Tokyo, Kaz fell in love with the 2004 Rangers that featured Hank Blalock and Mark Teixeira, and has been a fan since then. Other than doing baseball-related activity, which consumes most of his time, he enjoys singing and playing the guitar. He also writes for The Dynasty Guru and The Scoop Sports. You can follow Kaz on Twitter @Kazuto_Yamazaki and reach him via email kazuto.yamazaki@shutdowninning.com.

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