We talked about the hitters for the Rangers’ low-A affiliate with Hickory yesterday, so today we’ve got the numbers for the pitchers with Hickory.
There’s not a Leody Taveras or a Yanio Perez in the group, but there are still some intriguing guys to keep an eye on. Jonathan Hernandez is missing bats, as is Demarcus Evans, though Hernandez is doing a better job of throwing strikes.
The guys I’m most interesting in keeping an eye on early this year, though, are three college draftees from the 2015 draft — Michael Matuella, Jacob Lemoine, and Tyler Ferguson. Matuella and Lemoine were 3rd and 4th round picks, respectively, who dropped due to health questions, and just the fact that each is on the mound and pitching right now is good news. As for Ferguson, he throws really hard, but dropped to the 6th round (where he was an underslot sign) after a disastrous junior year at Vanderbilt where he was essentially shelved for being unable to throw strikes. He’s struck out 17 of the 44 batters he’s faced so far this year, but also hit 5 of them.
All three of these guys are older than the average low-A player, but with Lemoine and Matuella working their way back from injuries that effectively cost them each two years, and Ferguson being a project, that’s less of an issue than it normally would be.