With the minor league season over (other than the playoffs), we are reviewing the performances of the various Texas Rangers minor league affiliates, with today being the Hickory Crawdads.
And if you want to be enthusiastic about the future of the Rangers pitching staff, this is a good group to peruse.
Hans Crouse, of course, ended the season with Hickory, and did a respectable job in his 5 starts for the Crawdads, though he wasn’t as dominant as he was in Spokane. Still, he’s the top pitching prospect in the system for a reason.
That said, four pitchers who all spent most or all of the year for the Crawdads are the guys who really jump out at you. Tyler Phillips, who Tepid has been saying to watch out for since he was drafted in 2015, had a breakout season, exhibiting tremendous control while also missing bats. A.J. Alexy, who came over in the Yu Darvish trade, had a strong second half of the season where he kept his K rate up and cut his walk rate, making his overall performance for the year solid. And relievers DeMarcus Evans and Joe Barlow were close to untouchable, giving the ‘Dads a one-two punch out of the pen as formidable as any team in A ball.