Alex Gonzalez: A Look at the Rangers' 1st-Round Pick

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Alex Gonzalez:  A Look at the Rangers' 1st-Round Pick
Image courtesy Oral Roberts University.

The Rangers selected pitcher Alex Gonzalez with the 23rd overall pick in the first round of the MLB first-year player draft. The young righty started 15 games for Oral Roberts in 2013—posting a 9-5 record with a 1.83 ERA.    

Here is a look at what the newest member of the Rangers' organization brings to the table.

The former Golden Eagle stands 6'3" tall and has a fastball that will usually top out into the mid-90's. His fastball also has some decent sink on it, and he is capable of throwing a cutter which runs away from opposing hitters.

His other pitches include a slider with some bite and a changeup. Although his changeup still needs some work done, he doesn't throw it that often because of his other strong pitches. Gonzalez's slider may be the best pitch he has at this point. It tends to hit the mid-80's and can vary in break—depending on how he chooses to throw it. 

In addition to his strong ERA, Gonzalez is also a strikeout machine. During the 2013 season, he struck out 126 hitters over 114 innings pitched. He shows good command of the strike zone too, walking opponents just 27 times.  

It's unknown whether Gonzalez will be used as a starter or not, although his limited pitch types seem to put him into more of a bullpen role for now. Texas has no reason to rush him to the majors anytime soon. With a solid starting rotation and plenty of good relievers right now, Gonzalez should receive at least a full year or two in the minors.

Regardless of what role Gonzalez will have with the Rangers down the road, the 21-year-old pitcher should prove to be a nice pick for Texas in the future.

 

Stats and info courtesy of ESPN.com, MLB.com, CollegeSplits.com and BigLeagueFutures.net unless noted otherwise.

 

Follow Zachary on Twitter at @ZacharyKrueger

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