Lewis Brinson was the hot pick to be this year's breakout player on the Ranger farm, but a slow start to the season in the Cal League and a hamstring issue that sidelined him for a month resulted in him being largely overlooked this year.
Since returning from his injury, though, Brinson has been on fire, and after four hits last night, he's boosted his season line to .336/.417/.608, with 61 Ks against 31 walks in 290 plate appearances. That places him 3rd in the Cal League in OPS.
Brinson was activated in early June from the disabled list, and has a .359/.439/.674 line over that almost two month span. That includes a red-hot stretch over the past week, where he has gone 16 for 25 with 5 doubles, a triple and a pair of home runs, earning him Cal League Player of the Week honors for last week.
Brinson, who just turned 21 a couple of months ago, is a true centerfielder whose tools are such that the report on him has been that, if he can hit .240, he can be a productive major leaguer. He's been doing much better than that, albeit while playing half his games at hitter-friendly High Desert in the hitter-friendly Cal League.
We should have a chance to see what Brinson can do against more advanced competition in the near future. You have to think he is going to be headed to AA Frisco soon, to finish out the season there, and show that he's not a Cal League mirage. If he can keep up a level of performance anything close to what he's done in High Desert, the Rangers will potentially find themselves with a dilemma on their hands -- what to do with all this very good young outfield prospects.