Stock Up, Stock Down for Texas Rangers' Top 10 Prospects After Week 2

Trey WarrenContributor IIIApril 18, 2014

Stock Up, Stock Down for Texas Rangers' Top 10 Prospects After Week 2

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    Gregory Bull

    Another week has passed and it is time to check in on how the Texas Rangers’ top 10 prospects have fared thus far in 2014.

    The Rangers boast some of the youngest talent in all of baseball with seven players in the top-10 being drafted in 2010 or later. Many of them have a way to go before donning a big league uniform but continue to show promise in the minors.

    This is a series that will be updated throughout the season. It will include each prospect’s stats for the last seven days along with whether their stock has risen, fallen or remained the same.

    The prospect list that will be used is the same one I put together at the beginning of spring training. However, No. 3 prospect Michael Choice has been removed since he has been with the big league club since Opening Day.

    All stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com and MiLB.com

    You can follow Trey on Twitter @treydwarren

No. 11: Of Nomar Mazara, Single-A Hickory

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    Last Week’s Stats

    7 G, 6-29, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 R

     

    Overview

    Nomar Mazara received a $4.95 million signing bonus from the Rangers three years ago due to his size and power potential.

    The Dominican Republic native turns 19 years old on April 26 and is already 6’ 4” tall and 195 pounds. In his first full season with Hickory last year, Mazara hit 13 homers and drove in 62 runs in 126 games. However, he is very aggressive at the plate and struck out 131 times.

    He is a raw talent with a few more years of service in the minors before finding himself in a big league outfield. Mazara will continue to grow into his already impressive frame and provide plenty of power over his career.

     

    2014 Stats

    14 G, .189/.283/.283, 2 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 4 R

     

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No. 10: RHP Luke Jackson, Double-A Frisco

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    Last Week’s Stats

    1 GS, 1-0, 6 IP, 0 ER, 2 BB, 8 SO

     

    Overview

    Luke Jackson was a 2010 supplemental pick and was drafted No. 45 overall.

    The 22-year-old has a hard fastball that can hit 98 mph and can consistently throw between 94-96 mph as seen in the video above. He has a strikeout rate of 9.6 per nine innings since debuting with Hickory back in 2011.

    This season, he has continued to be a force on the mound with the exception of his second start. All seven runs he has given up came in that start on April 10 and is the reason for his inflated ERA.

    Jackson is still improving his command, holding a career rate of 4.6 walks per nine innings. If he can continue to improve his control, he could be wearing a Rangers uniform as soon as next season.

     

    2014 Stats

    3 GS, 1-0, 14.1 IP, 4.40 ERA, 5 BB, 12 SO

     

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No. 9: 2B Chris Bostick, High-A Myrtle Beach

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    Last Week’s Stats

    6 G, 4-23, 0 2B, 0 HR, 0 RBI, 2 R

     

    Overview

    Chris Bostick was picked in the 44th round by the Oakland A’s back in 2011.

    He was traded to the Rangers along with Michael Choice back in December. Bostick has shown flashes of power and speed during his minor league career, hitting 14 home runs and stealing 25 bags last season with Oakland’s Single-A affiliate Beloit.

    The 21-year-old has struggled at the plate and in the field so far this season, accumulating more strikeouts than hits and committing four errors in 12 games. Fielding has been a problem for Bostick since getting drafted in 2011, ash he has posted a .954 fielding percentage in 214 games.

    Considering the line of middle infielders in the Rangers’ organization, Bostick has a way to go before making a big league roster.

     

    2014 Stats

    12 G, .149/.241/.234, 1 2B, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 7 R

     

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No. 8: RHP Alex Gonzalez, High-A Myrtle Beach

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    Last Week’s Stats

    2 GS, 0-1, 11.1 IP, 4 ER, 1 BB, 12 SO

     

    Overview

    Alex Gonzalez was drafted by the Rangers in the first round of last year’s draft after skipping his senior season at Oral Roberts University.

    The 22-year-old is beginning his second stint with Myrtle Beach where he made five starts in 2013 after getting promoted from Low-A Spokane. According to Baseball-America’s Best Tools, Gonzalez has the best control and slider in the organization.

    Gonzalez has one of the quickest tracks to the big leagues of the Rangers pitching prospects. He has three years of college experience under his belt and is showing the control that Baseball-America is bragging about, posting a 2.7 walk rate per nine innings.

    To get a more in-depth idea of what kind of pitcher Gonzalez is, watch the video above.

     

    2014 Stats

    3 GS, 0-2, 15 IP, 3.60, 1 BB, 15 SO

     

    Stock Up

No. 7: OF Nick Williams, High-A Myrtle Beach

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    Last Week’s Stats

    5 G, 5-17, 1 2B, 0 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R

     

    Overview

    Nick Williams is one of three players on this list who were drafted in 2012.

    A native of Texas, Williams has been a threat to do practically anything at the plate. He hit 19 doubles, 12 triples and 17 homers for Hickory last season while posting the seventh-best batting average (.293) and third-best slugging percentage (.543) in the South Atlantic League.

    He can play all outfield spots but will most likely end up in left field due to an average arm. Williams can steal a bag occasionally but gets thrown out often. Strikeouts also have been an issue and that trend continues in 2014.

    However, he is showing a more disciplined approach at the plate, already accumulating five walks, a third of his total from 2013 (15).

     

    2014 Stats

    12 G, .239/.327/.326, 4 2B, 0 HR, 6 RBI, 4 R

     

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No. 6: 3B Joey Gallo, High-A Myrtle Beach

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    Last Week’s Stats

    7 G, 6-21, 0 2B, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 8 R

     

    Overview

    Like Williams, Joey Gallo was selected in the 2012 draft but was drafted in the first round and can hit the long ball, a lot.

    Gallo is one of the most powerful prospects in baseball. Last year he hit more home runs than any player in the minor leagues (40), which accounted for nearly half of the hits he tallied in 2013 (96). So far in 2014, he's on the same track.

    The only knock on Gallo, who isn’t the only Rangers prospect with the issue, is his strikeout total. He has a big, long swing that contributed to him striking out 165 times in 106 games.

    Expect to see Gallo as a DH at the next level. He has a .913 fielding percentage but has too much power to not get a shot in the big leagues.

     

    2014 Stats

    14 G, .311/.433/.733, 1 2B, 6 HR, 13 RBI, 14 R

     

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No. 5: OF Lewis Brinson, Class-A Hickory

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    Last Week’s Stats

    7 G, 9-26, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 5 R

     

    Overview

    Last but not least of the 2012 draft class is 20-year-old Lewis Brinson.

    Like Gallo, Brinson has home run power but is also a threat to steal. In 190 minor league games, including this season, the Florida native has hit 31 homers and stolen 41 bases. In addition, he is considered the best defensive outfielder in the Rangers farm system by Baseball America.

    But also like Gallo, he strikes out at an incredible rate. In 122 games with Hickory, Brinson fanned 191 times for a 38 percent strikeout rate. MLB.com says pitch-recognition is his biggest problem, which would explain why his strikeout total is so high given the smooth swing he possesses.

    Fans can expect to see Brinson patrolling center field at the big league level, but it will take a couple of years and a huge improvement in plate discipline.

     

    2014 Stats

    14 G, .315/.362/.519, 2 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 14 RBI

     

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No. 4: Luis Sardinas, Double-A Frisco

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    Last Week’s Stats

    5 G, 6-22, 2 2B, 0 HR, 4 RBI, 3 R

     

    Overview

    Luis Sardinas has been patrolling shortstop as a product of the Rangers since he was 17 years old.

    Now in his fifth season as a pro, Sardinas has shown a consistent bat and ability to get on base. He doesn’t strike out a lot but doesn’t draw many walks either. The 20-year-old puts the ball in play and can steal at will, collecting 32 stolen bases in both the 2012 and 2013 seasons.

    He holds a career .290 batting average but has gotten off to a slow start this season. Since Sardinas has never finished a season with an average lower than .288, an improvement at the plate is to be expected this year.

    Sardinas lacks power and commits a lot of errors at shortstop. Baseball America says he is the best defensive infielder in the system but has a career .941 fielding percentage and was charged with 30 errors in 2013.

    The Rangers may not get a chance to utilize Sardinas with Elvis Andrus and Jurickson Profar currently locked up in the middle of the infield.

     

    2014 Stats

    12 G, .224/.225/.265, 2 2B, 0 HR, 5 RBI, 5 R

     

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No. 2: C Jorge Alfaro, High-A Myrtle Beach

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    Last Week’s Stats

    6 G, 7-25, 3 2B, 1 HR, 6 RBI, 4 R

     

    Overview

    Jorge has been one of the Rangers top prospects for the last couple of years and is currently ranked No. 2 at the catcher position in all of baseball by MLB.com.

    The 20-year-old has solid power but is another Texas prospect who strikes out more than he hits. Alfaro has good speed for a backstop, and according to MLB.com, he may have the best arm of any catcher in the minor leagues.

    Alfaro still has a couple of years to shorten his swing and become a better catcher defensively. He is a converted infielder and has just a couple of years’ experience behind the plate.

    This season will be his first at Myrtle Beach which isn’t an easy park to showcase power. Alfaro may have a difficult time hitting the long ball, but he has power to all gaps and will drive in plenty of runs.

     

    2014 Stats

    13 G, .240/.309/.360

     

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No. 1: 2B Rougned Odor, Double-A Frisco

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    Last Week’s Stats

    6 G, 6-24, 1 2B, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 5 R

     

    Overview

    With Jurickson Profar getting moved to second base this season and for the foreseeable future, Rougned Odor is in the same boat at Sardinas—buried in the organization behind a talented big leaguer.

    Odor is rated the No. 2 second baseman and No. 57 overall prospect by MLB.com. He hits for extra bases and can swipe a bag at any time. He has shown flashes of power and looks to have increased that capability with three early homers in 12 games with Frisco.

    It looked like he had a shot to play second base for the Rangers when Profar hit the disabled list after shoulder surgery. But general manager Jon Daniels wanted to keep Odor in the minors. And although he is off to a slow start, Odor puts the ball in play, produces runs and has a good glove at second base.

    It seems unlikely the Rangers would trade Odor. But if Profar lives up to expectations, it could be awhile before he is patrolling second base at Globe Life Park.

     

    2014 Stats

    12 G, .213/.240/.426, 1 2B, 3 HR, 6 RBI, 10 R

     

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