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Wes Benjamin, Texas Rangers 2014 5th round pick, makes his professional debut

Wes Benjamin, a lefthanded pitcher taken out of the University of Kansas by the Rangers last year, took the mound as a professional for the first time yesterday

Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

Wes Benjamin, a lefthanded pitcher who the Texas Rangers drafted in 2014 in the fifth round out of the University of Kansas, made his pro debut yesterday in the Arizona Rookie League.

Benjamin's 2014 college season was ended prematurely when he underwent Tommy John surgery on April 10, 2014.  The Rangers signed him to a $150,000 bonus last year after drafting him, and he has been rehabbing since that time.  He started last night's game for the Rangers' rookie leaguers, throwing 1 inning, striking out a pair of batters and walking one.

Benjamin is a pitchability guy, who threw pre-surgery in the 88-92 mph range, and profiled as a possible back-of-the-rotation starter coming out of college.  I would expect the Rangers to keep him in Arizona pitching in the AZL for a bit to control his innings and ease him back onto the mound, but if he responds well, he could end up in Spokane before the season is out.