Texas Rangers’ Minor League Update: A Focus on Prospects 6-15
By Cody Smith
#10-Taylor Hearn LHP, Texas Rangers (7-day IL)
Hearn, 24, made his MLB debut in Seattle a few weeks ago, and it went as poorly as a debut could go. The Rangers did send him to the IL after his start, pinpointing an elbow injury. He is expected to resume a throwing program shortly though, and will likely make a few rehab starts in Frisco or Nashville before a decision is made as to whether or not he is ready enough for major league action. Hopefully the key piece of the Keone Kela trade can get healthy quickly so he can begin contributing to the Texas Rangers soon.
#9-Brock Burke LHP, Frisco RoughRiders (7-day IL)
Yet another injured pitcher, Burke, the 22 year-old that was a big part of the Jurickson Profar deal, will hopefully return to the RoughRiders soon. He’s been dealing with a nagging blister and some shoulder fatigue. So far this season he has been limited to just three starts, posting an 0-2 record with a 3.86 ERA. If he can get healthy and start putting together some good outings, there is a chance we could see him in the majors later this year.
#8-Jonathan Hernandez RHP, Frisco RoughRiders
Just looking at his ERA (6.38 across 9 games), it has not been very pretty season for Hernandez. But it hasn’t been as bad as it seems. He has pitched five innings or more in every game except one, and has given up three runs or fewer in all but three games. Outside of three bad starts, he has been solid. Still, he has a lot to prove before being deemed major league ready. Don’t expect to see the 22-year-old in a Rangers uniform until next season. If the team falls out of the race, there’s a chance he could filter to the bigs this year, however.
#7-Joe Palumbo LHP, Frisco RoughRiders
Palumbo has flown through the minor leagues since his Tommy John injury a few years ago, and he currently has a 3.64 ERA in eight games in 2019. In 42 innings, the 24 year-old southpaw has a 56:20 K:BB ratio. If all continues to go well for him at Double-A, he could soon find himself in Nashville, or even in the majors. Unless he starts pitching poorly, it would be safe to assume that he would at least be a September call-up, especially with him being a part of the 40-man roster.
#6-Bubba Thompson OF, Down East Wood Ducks (7-day IL)
*Disclaimer: I swapped Bubba and Leody because I believe Leody has moved into the top 5 with his play this season*
Thompson, 20, had a terrific season in Hickory last year, hitting .289 with a .344 OBP with 32 stolen bases. He has outstanding, MLB-ready speed, but the former 1st-rounder got hurt after just 12 games with a broken bone in his left hand. Through 12 games, he really struggled, posting a .150 average in a very small sample size. Thompson is expected to be in the majors by 2021.