2019 Texas Rangers minor league review: The Hickory Crawdads hitters.
With the regular season and playoffs now over for the Texas Rangers’ minor league clubs, we are taking a look at the performance of each of the U.S.-based minor league teams. Today we are looking at the hitters for the low-A Hickory Crawdads, whose 83-52 record was the second-best in the South Atlantic League this season, and who advanced to the Sally League Finals before being eliminated.
The Crawdads were second in the Sally League in runs per game this year, and the standout performers were Sam Huff and Curtis Terry, who each earned promotions to Down East early in the season. Tyreque Reed went the other way, returning to Hickory after a slow start at Down East and then an injury, but mashed with the Crawdads. Also earning a promotion to Down East was Sherten Apostel, who, after a slow start to the year, turned heads with his plate discipline and power.
Jonathan Ornelas is the position player who was still on the team at season’s end who generated the most talk. His slash line isn’t, on the surface, that impressive, but the 2018 3rd rounder a 19 year old middle infielder who also played some outfield and handled himself well. Pedro Gonzalez and Miguel Aparicio also spent all season at Hickory, and while they had up-and-down years, they showed progress and flashed the tools that has us thinking one of them could take a step forward next year.
Josh Jung joined Hickory after a tune-up with the AZL Rangers, and he showed place discipline and hit for average, though the power wasn’t there — he hit just one home run in 179 plate appearances. Power was the question about Jung coming out of college, and we will want to keep an eye next year on whether Jung is able to tap into his raw power more in his first full season of pro ball.