Texas Rangers Round Rock Roll Call: Kyle Blanks Named PCL Player of the Week
By Jason Burke
The Round Rock Express, the Texas Rangers’ Triple-A affiliate, are off to a great start this season, holding a 12-6 record while sitting atop the PCL American Southern Division. They currently lead the Zephyrs (Miami) by 3.5 games, the Sounds (A’s) by 4 and the Redbirds (Cardinals, obviously) by 6 in the early going. Currently on a five-game win streak, and victors in eight of their last nine, the Express will look to complete their four game sweep of Memphis later tonight. Alex “Chi Chi” Gonzalez (1-2, 5.17) will take on Tyler Lyons (1-1, 4.61) at 7:05.
More from Texas Rangers Prospects
- Where do Texas Rangers prospects Jack Leiter and Kumar Rocker stand after the DeGrom signing?
- Texas Rangers prospect Kumar Rocker flashing big potential in Arizona Fall League
- Aaron Zavala absolutely crushing it in the Texas Rangers’ minor league system
- Texas Rangers prospect Jonathan Ornelas seeing his stock rise rapidly in 2022
- 3 Texas Rangers Prospects Most Likely to Emerge as September Call-Ups
The Express aren’t atop the leaderboards in any team categories, and the only individual near the top of any statistical category is Anthony Ranaudo, whose 1.20 ERA ranks 4th in the Pacific Coast League, but they are sending the home fans to their cars happy. Ranaudo picked up his second win on Sunday, in Round Rock’s 5-4 victory over the Redbirds.
Here is a quick look at the offensive statistics for the entire roster updated Monday night:
Kyle Blanks is off to a hot start, and the versatile 6’6″ righty could warrant a look on the big league roster if an injury befalls either a corner outfielder or one of the first base candidates. He isn’t the fleetest of foot, but he has shown he knows how to get on base in the majors, with a .319 OBP to go along with his .234 career batting average.
Thomas Field‘s numbers stick out among this group as well, with his five home runs and 12 rbi to go along with an impressive batting average and OBP, yet Field just turned 28 has not seen much playing time in the majors–gathering just 81 plate appearances over parts of three seasons with the Rockies and Angels. He has struck out in 22 of those big league at bats and hit .224. Yet, with these numbers, he could land an opportunity with another team. The Texas Rangers have too many players blocking his path to the majors with Elvis Andrus, Rougned Odor, Adam Rosales, Delino DeShields and (when healthy) Jurickson Profar for Fields to be anything more than an emergency addition to the 25-man roster.
Now, for the pitching statistics:
Reliever Juan Perez and starter Luke Jackson have had an issue with their command, but have shown that they can strike out the opposition at a high clip. The 36-year old Perez holds a 14.5 K/9 rate, while Jackson is at a more modest 8.8.
You may remember Jerad Eickhoff from an article over the weekend. While his numbers are very solid, what’s really impressive is that he held a no-hitter into the ninth inning in his first start with Round Rock. A couple more months of solid starts and there could be a rotation spot in Texas with his name on it, although Alex Gonzalez may have something to say about that.
The team doesn’t have many big names (until Joey Gallo arrives) but the amassed talent is proving that they can win games in the Pacific Coast League. While much of the Texas Rangers touted minor league talent is in the lower levels of their farm system, they’ll all have to pass through Round Rock before getting their call to the majors. For now, the Express have PCL Player of the Week Kyle Blanks to boast about, who went 14-for-30 over his last ten games (.467) with three home runs, seven rbi and five runs in that span.