The Texas Rangers future is made up of the prospects currently in the organization. Which prospect continues the rankings at #11?
As we continue this offseason into Spring Training, we’re looking at the Top 25 prospects in the Texas Rangers organization. These are the players that have performed through the 2018 season and offer the most for the club moving forward.
#11: LHP Cole Ragans
Cole Ragans is the part of this ranking where the future Texas Rangers core of pitching begins. The 21-year old left-hander was a late first-round pick of Texas back in 2016. Oft compared to former Rangers ace, Cole Hamels, Ragans is one of a few players that Texas hopes can fill out their Major League rotation for years to come.
Ragans professional baseball debut came in Arizona Rookie League where he made 4 appearances, 2 of which were starts. He struck out 9 in 7.2 innings while surrendering 4 earned runs.
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The summer of 2017 was Ragans more extended foray into the pro scene with Short-Season Spokane where the lefty made 13 total starts. Ragans threw 57.1 innings between those 13 starts and showed his outstanding strikeout ability sitting down 87 good for a 13.7 strikeouts per 9 innings rate. An improved 3.61 ERA showed some long-term promise and helped him climb up some prospect rankings.
MLB Prospect Watch notes Ragans high powered fastball that regularly sits in the low-to-mid 90’s. Ragans also has a plus-changeup to pair with his plus-fastball and is continuing to develop his curveball that shows above-average promise.
Ragans did miss all of the 2018 season due to Tommy John surgery and Texas is working him back slowly with expectations being that he won’t return until mid-2019. When he does return, he likely will continue to work with Short-Season Spokane and might climb his way to Single-A Hickory.
I’d imagine 2020 is the real season to keep an eye on Cole assuming he stays healthy. That should be the first full season in the minors he’ll get and will give us a better picture of his long-term potential. Texas has hopes that he’ll be a piece of their rotation in the future and he probably could fight his way into a middle-of-the-rotation role for the long-term. Until he reaches Arlington however, he’s one for Rangers fans to keep an eye on.