Happy Fourth of July!

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

Frisco fell behind 5-1 after a rough third inning, but chipped away at the deficit and stormed ahead with a monster five-run seventh. Click here to read the full game recap.

Star of the Game: 2B Odubel Herrera – 2/4, 2R, 3RBI, BB, SB

Odubel continues to knock the cover off the cowhide and extended his hit streak to ten games on Friday. On U.S. Independence Day, the Venezuelan drove in the first run of the game and later tied the game at 5-5 to cap a four-run rally. ‘Dubel is clobbering at a .352 clip in the Texas League this season (43 games) and at an astronomical .421 rate over his last ten games. With the ‘Riders, the southpaw has 18 runs, eight doubles, two triples, one home run and 25 RBI.

In case you missed it:

-The RoughRiders are undefeated in the state of Arkansas this season with a perfect 9-0 record.

-The ‘Riders also won their fourth straight game for the first time since May 29.

-Friday’s four-run rally marked the second time this season the ‘Riders overcame such a deficit and went on to win the ballgame. The first instance occurred way back on April 10 in an 11-7 win over the Northwest Arkansas Naturals. Frisco fell behind 4-0 in the first inning, tied the game at four in the top of the third and then fell behind 7-4 in the fourth. It was all RoughRiders the rest of the way, however, as they scored seven unanswered to win their second straight in what would become a ten-game winning streak. The ‘Riders smashed four home runs in the game (Jordan Brown, Drew Robinson, Trever Adams, Ryan Rua) and Rougned Odor finished 2-for-5 with a run scored.

-Gallo watch: 2-for-4, R, IBB, 2K

Joey drew his first intentional walk in the Texas League in a move that backfired on the Travelers. He rebounded nicely after striking out in his first two at-bats of the night.

-Patrick Cantwell was hit by a pitch for the tenth time this season (most on the team) when Drew Rucinski plunked him on the left wrist in the fifth inning.

-Tomás Telis’ entered the game with his batting average below .300 for the first time since May 4, a streak of 46 games.

-Wilmer Font earned his first win on the mound since April 17 against Corpus Christi.

 

 

One day after Edwar Cabrera tossed eight innings of shutout baseball, the southpaw regales his longest outing of the season with Alex on the Pregame Show. Interestingly enough, the last time Cabrera threw that many frames also came against the Travelers but in 2012 when he belonged to the Colorado Rockies organization (Tulsa Drillers). Edwar admits lobbying Jason Wood to pitch the ninth, but respects his skipper’s decision:

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

Fear and Loathing [of] Las Vegas

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

There is no love lost between the Arkansas Travelers and two of the heroes from last night’s game for the RoughRiders, Joey Gallo and Drew Robinson. Both propsects hail from Sin City and cashed in in a big, big way on Thursday as each homered in a 2-0 win. Click here to read the full game recap.

Star of the Game: LHP Edwar Cabrera – 8.0IP, 3H, 0R, BB, 7K

Joey and Drew provided the offense, but really, it was the least they could do in support of Edwar, who produced a gem on Thursday. The Dominican refused to allow an extra-base hit over his longest outing of the season. Incidentally, the last time the southpaw tossed eight innings also came at Dickey-Stephens Park back in 2012, when Cabrera pitched in the Colorado Rockies organization with the Tulsa Drillers. He lobbied field manager Jason Wood to pitch the ninth, but graciously said he respects Wood’s decision. Caby is now 4-6 with a 3.07 ERA on the season.

In case you missed it:

-The RoughRiders are undefeated in the state of Arkansas this season with a perfect 8-0 record.

-The ‘Riders also won their third straight game for the first time since June 6.

-Frisco shut out an opponent for the ninth time this season, tied with San Antonio for the most in the league.

-Gallo watch: 1-for-5, R, HR, RBI, 3SO

You take the trio of strikeouts when Joey breaks a scoreless tie on a solo home run in the eighth inning on the road. The hulking left-handed hitter now has 30 home runs this season, more than anyone in either Minor League or Major League Baseball this season (Kris Bryant of Triple-A Iowa is in second with 28). His nine home runs in the Texas League already ranks ninth in the league and Gallo has played in just 21 games.

-Gallo’s home run off David Carpenter, a pitcher with nearly 50 career innings of big league experience, was the first run allowed by Carpenter in nearly 17 innings.

-The ‘Riders say bon voyage to Ryan Strausborger after a brief, but explosive stint with the ‘Riders. For the first time in eight games with Frisco, Strausborger failed to register a base knock or score a run. The speedy center fielder batted .417 (15-for-36) with four extra-base hits, four RBI and nine runs scored.

-First baseman Trever Adams made a circus catch in foul territory in the eighth inning. On a towering pop fly from Eric Stamets, Adams drifted across the line and made the snag after the ball bounced out of glove and caromed off his melon (and back into his mitt).

-In addition to his heroics at the plate, Robinson made two acrobatic plays in right field to help Cabrera in the fourth. Robinson dove to retire Alex Yarbrough on a line drive. Later, he veered into foul territory and crashed into the wall to end the inning on a fly ball from Mike Bianucci.

 

 

Backstop Patrick Cantwell chats about his chemistry with certain battery mates and discusses his growth at the plate this season:

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

‘Tis the Season

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

It’s Christmas in July at Dickey-Stephens Park in North Little Rock, Arkansas as the ‘Riders battle the Travelers in a three-game series. In true holiday spirit, the Travelers handed a pair of gifts (errors) to the ‘Riders, who happily accepted and unwrapped an early lead. In a ponderous affair (time of game three hours and 18 minutes), knocked off Arkansas by a 5-1 margin before the clock struck midnight. Click here to read the full game recap.

Star of the Game: RHP Kyle Lotzkar – 3.0IP, H, 0R, 0BB, 3K, W

The righty turned in his finest performance of the season in relief of starter Alex Gonzalez. Kyle allowed just one baserunner (a seventh-inning single to Jett Bandy) over his three innings on the mound and notched his first win as a member of the Rangers organization. The ‘Riders have thrown Lotzkar into a variety of situations as both a starter and a reliever in an attempt to get the Canadian on track after a shaky start to the season. Kyle may be starting to turn the corner.

In case you missed it:

-The RoughRiders are undefeated in the state of Arkansas this season with a perfect 7-0 record.

-The ‘Riders also won back-to-back games for the first time since June 9-10.

-Frisco scored all five of its runs in the first two innings.

-Gallo watch: 2-for-4, 2B, BB, 2SO

Joey appears to have swapped out home runs for two-baggers recently. He has four doubles in his last three games and no long balls over that span. The left-handed hitter has been pull-happy lately as well. His last opposite field shot was a solo home run on June 26. Through 20 games with the ‘Riders, Joey bats .297 (22-for-74) with 15 runs, six doubles, eight home runs and 21 batted in. His .703 slugging percentage is only 32 points lower than his mark in Advanced-A Myrtle Beach.

-Ryan Strausborger extended his hitting streak since his arrival in Frisco on June 25 and now has at least one hit and one run scored in each of his seven games played. He went 2-for-5 on Wednesday with two runs scored.

-Arkansas’ ball boys sport a unique look in comparison to their compatriots throughout the Texas League. The Travs deck their boys in polo shirts and shorts, in similar fashion to the guys and gals you see running across the green lawns of the All England Club for Wimbledon.

A Wimbledon ball boy, not to be confused with his kin in North Little Rock, Arkansas.

A Wimbledon ball boy, not to be confused with his kin in North Little Rock, Arkansas.

 

 

Be sure to save time for Randy Henry’s candid interview with Alex as heard on the RoughRiders Pregame Show:

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

The first pitch: A sit down with Jeff Andrews

Jeff Andrews as he throws batting practice.

Jeff Andrews as he throws batting practice.

Pitching and defense is highly sought after in the game of baseball. It’s arguably where everything starts and finishes for a club and having that distinct advantage can mean the difference between making or missing the playoffs. RoughRiders pitching coach Jeff Andrews has learned a thing or two over the course of his career about mentoring the young arms that the Rangers might depend upon come October, and he knows exactly what to look for.

“Consistency. Consistency from day-to-day, month-to-month, year-to-year. It’s about trying to get the guys to understand that the big picture is ‘What are we going to look like?’, and at the end of the year have we improved or gotten better. It’s about looking at one bad outing or two bad outings and changing the way we pitch. If they’re better at the end of the year than they were at the beginning of the year then it’s been a successful season,” Andrews says.

Establishing that consistency can be difficult for these young talents as they work their way through the Rangers’ organization, but effort is something that stands out to Andrews as he mentors his young prospects.

“Coming ready to compete is probably the number one thing I look for. It’s not about creating an idea in their mind that the other team is really good or that the next level is really good, but coming with the idea that they can control certain things, they can control their effort level, they can control their attitude, and they can come to the ballpark everyday with that and see where it leads them,” Andrews said.

He added by saying, “It’s about staying in the middle and having a consistent routine as far as having a consistent day-to-day outlook that gets you through.”

Jeff is in his 30th season as a minor league instructor and his experience with the Rangers first began in 1986, which was his first stint with the club. He acquired big league coaching experience serving as the Pirates pitching coach in 2008 and says that technology has come a very long way changing the day-to-day functions of his job.

“When I started doing this there were no cell phones or computers so the back-and-forth distribution of information, or even phone calls to Arlington weren’t easy, Andrews said. “We’d be on the bus for ten hours and you’d never hear from anybody and now it’s texts, emails and phone calls coming at you all the time. I think it’s made it better and worse just like anything, it has it’s good points and bad points.”

There are hundreds of different outcomes that can happen after a pitch or because of how a pitch is executed and Andrews says, “Sometimes I think we become so handcuffed mentally and physically by too much information that we forget to use our brain to think. We have to adjust to certain situations because when there are guys all over the bases and we just gave up a two-run double the information isn’t there. You’re in survival mode and competing mode and you rely on your instincts to get you out of the situation.”

The Rangers have acquired these pitchers because they understand the value that they can bring to the club and are looking forward to seeing the true potential they hold. Andrews understands that, but he also sees something more than what the box score says in the morning paper.

“The biggest reward is just watching guys get better. A lot of people think you get enjoyment out of working with the best talent, and that’s not necessarily so, because you look for the guys with the most drive to really grind and try and understand what the minor leagues and what development is all about,” Andrews said.

“Watching them go forward and watching them improve and go up the system can be very rewarding,” he added.

“I have a special place in my heart for guys that know they aren’t the most talented but they compete as hard or harder than anybody. The ones that have the talent and compete are the ones that succeed, but as far as having favorites, I don’t know if I have any. I just know that there are guys that I enjoy working with and being around that love baseball,” he said.

Every team has an identity and strives to execute the small things on a consistent basis. It’s the foundation of a winning club, the backbone of a pennant race, and is what Andrews and the Rangers work to improve every single day.

-Cameron Varnau

The Adam/s Family

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

Yes, I know the spelling is different, but fans may have thought Monday’s day game with Northwest Arkansas was sponsored by the Department of Redundancy Department. The affair was neither creepy or cooky, serious nor spooky, but the backs of more than a couple jerseys looked the same out on the field.

Jason Adam (in the singular) got the start for the Naturals on the mound with teammate Lane Adams (in the plural) behind him in center field. That’s not to be confused with Trever Adams (no relation) for the RoughRiders, who batted as the designated hitter.

Regardless, the RoughRiders made sure to end their up-and-down homestand with a win early Monday afternoon (the game tipped at 11:06 in the morning!). A 9-2 dub gave Frisco a 3-3 record on the homestand and a 45-35 record overall. They still have a 5-6 record in the second half. Click here to read the full game recap.

As the calendar turns to July, day games for the RoughRiders virtually dry up in the Texas League heat. The ‘Riders have two more contests under the sun for the remainder of the season and both take place on the road (July 15 in San Antonio and August 24 in Midland). With Monday’s win, Frisco is now 9-8 in day games and 6-6 during daylight hours at Dr Pepper Ballpark.

Star of the Game: SS Edwin Garcia – 3/4, 2R, 2B, RBI

Edwin takes home his first “Star of the Game” honors after his first three hit ballgame of the season. Batting eighth in the lineup, Garcia played a key role in turning the order over, which allowed guys at the top to drive home runs and put the ‘Riders on the board consistently throughout the game. His RBI double in the second came with two outs in the frame and his run in the eighth helped Frisco drive the final nail in the Naturals’ coffin.

In case you missed it:

-Trever “Gomez” Adams takes home an honorable mention for “Star of the Game” with a 2-for-3 day at the plate with a run, a home run, three RBI and a walk.

-Lane “Lurch” Adams finished the three-game set with two more extra-base hits on Monday (both doubles). His series numbers read 6-for-12 with two runs, two doubles, one triple, two home runs, eight RBI and two stolen bases.

-Gallo watch: 2-for-5, R, 22B, 2RBI, 2SO

Joey hammered both of his doubles to deep right field, one of which crashed off the wall on the fly. He bopped three two-baggers in the final two games of the series and now has five with the ‘Riders since his call-up on June 8.

-RHP Francisco Mendoza earned his first save since May 3 as he pitched the final three innings against Northwest Arkansas. The Dominican allowed no runs on just one hit with two walks and five strikeouts.

-Ryan Strausborger extended his hitting streak since his arrival in Frisco on June 25 and now has at least one hit and one run scored in each of his six games played. He went 2-for-5 on Monday with two runs and a triple.

-Because the game started at 11:05 a.m. the seating bowl was rife with summer-campers decked out in colored shirts to signify their particular group or affiliation. It looked like a bag of skittles had been skattered throughout the seats.

 

Speaking of Strausborger, catch his interview on the Pregame Show where he elaborates on differences between Double-A and Triple-A, the skills behind a quality baserunner and his improvements made at the plate:

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

 

On the Wrong End of the Seesaw

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

In one of the more entertaining games of the year (three ties and four lead-changes), Northwest Arkansas edged Frisco 6-5 on Sunday night. Click here to read the full game recap.

The RoughRiders need a win in today’s business-goers special (11:05 a.m. first pitch) to salvage a .500 mark on the six-game homestand (currently 2-3).

Frisco assumed Northwest’s role from a defensive standpoint in the second game of the series and repeatedly shot themselves in the foot with errors in the field. The Naturals committed three blunders in game one, while a pair of errant throws on third baseman Drew Robinson cost the ‘Riders.

Robinson’s error in the third added fuel to the fire in a tough inning for Alec Asher. A three-run home run from one-man wrecking crew Lane Adams had already given the Naturals a 3-2 lead. Northwest singled twice more off Asher when Hunter Dozier, a native of Denton, Texas, grounded sharply to Robinson. With good speed down the line, Dozier likely would have beaten out an on-target throw from Robinson, but when the infielder airmailed the throw to first, Jorge Bonifacio came home to score. The unearned run for the Naturals proved to be the difference in a one-run game.

Star of the Game: CF Ryan Strausborger – 3/5, R

Batting like a house on fire, Strausborger now has at least one hit and a run scored in all five of his games with the RoughRiders. Through his first 21 at-bats, the native of northwest Indiana has 11 hits, five runs, a double, a triple, and a home run with four RBI and a stolen base.

In case you missed it:

-Frisco falls to 14-7 in one-run games and 3-8 on Sundays.

-It was Mike Bianucci in the Arkansas series, and now it seems Lane Adams is playing the role of “RoughRiders Wrecker” in the current set. The center fielder went 3-for-4 and finished with five RBI, a stolen base, a sacrifice fly and a double shy of the cycle. He drove in all five earned runs for the Naturals on Sunday (no RBI assigned on the unearned run). The righty’s three-bagger in the eighth inning scored the winning run, and in the bottom of the frame, he robbed Teodoro Martinez of a home run when he pulled the ball back over the fence in center field.

-Gallo watch: 2-for-3, R, 2B, RBI, SO, BB

Joey now has ten walks and 32 strikeouts in Double-A. He smoked a double pull-side to right field in the first inning that landed midway up the wall on the fly. The Bishop Gorman High School alumnus bats .277 (18-for-65) with the ‘Riders and has three doubles, eight home runs and 19RBI.

 

In our weekly “Sunday with the Skipper” conversation, the skip addresses the loss of several key pieces to Triple-A, but remains optimistic about the talent on the roster and in the pipeline:

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

 

Second Inning Slide (Again)

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

Well, this story line is officially past its expiration date. Another quirky second inning seemed to knock the RoughRiders off balance and Arkansas inflicted a rare series loss upon Frisco at Dr Pepper Ballpark. Click here to read the full game recap.

For the second straight night, a costly defensive miscue in the second inning nipped the ‘Riders. With a runner on first, a fielding error on Guilder Rodriguez placed two men on with no outs. The next batter, Eric Stamets, popped a towering fly ball that didn’t leave the infield.

The ball initially drifted towards Trever Adams at first base, but with 30-mph gusts blowing across the diamond from right to left, Adams soon embarked on a mad chase across the infield as the wind pushed the ball to the third base foul line.

Not only did the cowhide elude Adams’ glove, it landed fair in the dirt mere feet from the foul territory to load the bases.

Kyle Hudson followed and drove a grounder to second baseman Odubel Herrera on the edge of the outfield grass. The play would have likely scored a run regardless, but the ‘Riders at least had an opportunity to record the first out of the frame.

Instead, Adams broke off the first base bag upon contact in expectation of a bunt from Hudson. When Herrera fielded the ball, Adams was nowhere near the bag and Herrera had to eat the ball and all Travelers were safe once again.

Frisco turned a double play later in the inning, which would have ended the Travs’ chances had an out been made on the Hudson ground ball. Arkansas scored another run on the twin killing and took the lead for good.

Star of the Game: CF Ryan Strausborger – 3/4, R, 3B

Ryan scored the first ‘Riders run for the second straight night. He flashed his speed on the base path with a leadoff triple in the first inning and again in sixth when he moved from first to third in on a base knock by Patrick Cantwell. “Straus” is 7-for-12 through his first three games in a RoughRiders’ uniform this season with three runs, a double, a triple, a home run and four RBI. The centerfielder also notched an outfield assist when he threw out Brian Hernandez at third base in the eighth inning.

In case you missed it:

-The RoughRiders lost a series at home for the first time since April 7. The opponent? Arkansas.

-Patrick Cantwell threw out two would-be basestealers on Friday. The Travelers rank second in the Texas League in stolen bases, but succeeded just once in the series.

-Frisco had a chance to score in the third. With Strausborger on second base and two outs, Cantwell bounced a grounder to short. An errant throw allowed Cantwell to reach, but the Travs escaped the inning because they caught Strausborger in a rundown between third and home. Strausborger may have taken the play for granted and assumed Cantwell would be thrown out, and thus overran third.

-Gallo watch: 0-for-4, 3SO

-Former RoughRider Mike Bianucci posted a modest 3-for-4 line with a run last night. Bianucci turned in perhaps the most impressive offensive series against the ‘Riders this season. In three games, the slugger batted 8-for-13 with six runs, two doubles, a home run and three RBI.

 

 

I had the chance to chat with Assistant Hitting Coordinator Brook Jacoby on Friday. Jacoby, a two-time MLB All-Star, joined the minor league staff this season after a seven-year run as the hitting coach for Dusty Baker and the Cincinnati Reds (think Joey Votto, Ken Griffey, Jr., Scott Rolen, Jay Bruce, Brandon Phillips, etc.). He draws some interesting parallels between hitters in both places. Lots of insight in this interview:

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

 

Second Inning Shift

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

Arkansas’ bats exploded for 18 hits against the RoughRiders and the Travs evened the series at a game apiece heading into the Friday night finale. Click here to read the full game recap.

The Travelers came to play, but in a second consecutive outing, Alex “Chi Chi” Gonzalez couldn’t seem to catch a break. Corpus Christi dinged him for 12 soft singles on June 20. Last night, it was a rough second inning that turned the course of the RoughRiders’ night permanently against their favor.

Mike Bianucci kept one ball in the infield on Thursday, but still managed to reach in the second on a fielding error by Joey Gallo. The third baseman charged slow grounder but came up with an empty glove as he went into the throwing motion.

Gonzalez then hit the next batter, Jett Bandy, with a pitch to put two on with nobody out. Home plate umpire Matt Czajak made a belated ruling after Bandy was halfway down the first base line. The hesitation peeved Jason Wood, who offered some demonstrative words to Czajak before returning to the dugout. Perhaps the exchange rattled Czajak, who made a poor call with significant ramifications later in the frame.

The ‘Riders managed to turn a double play to pick up two outs as a runner traveled to third. But after Kaleb Cowart tied the game with an RBI double, Czajak ruled a bouncer from Drew Heid on the third base line fair, which gave Arkansas a lead they would not relinquish.

From the press box the outfield berm, the ball appeared to cross wide of third base, but the only pair of eyes in the park that didn’t see it as such happened to be the home plate umpire. From the moment Wood emerged from the dugout for the second time in the inning, everyone understood his night was about to end. Sure enough, Czajak tossed Wood and the Travelers held the momentum for the rest of the night. An unfortunate series of events for the RoughRiders, who got off to a good start with a Ryan Strausborger home run in the first inning.

Star of the Game: 3B Joey Gallo – 2/4, 2R, HR, 2B, RBI

Joey doubled to right and launched a 1-0 pitch from Carmine Giardina to the opposite field in the seventh. It had the height to clear the WinStar Diamond Deck but instead clanged off the tin roof and caromed back into the field of play. Scouts and coaches say Gallo’s power to the opposite direction is what will make him a terror to big league pitchers. He is far more complex than a mere pull-side slugger and he has shown it on multiple occasions this season. The proud Italian has seven Double-A homers and reclaims sole possession of first in the minors with 28 long balls in 2014.

In case you missed it:

-Teodoro Martinez drew the only walk of the game for either team in the seventh inning from Carmine Giardina.

-RoughRiders pitching allowed 18 hits, the most in a single game this season for the staff

-In 60 games in Triple-A, Strausborger had no home runs and no multi-RBI games. He has one home run and two multi-RBI nights in two games with Frisco this season.

-Former RoughRider Mike Bianucci ate his former team for breakfast, lunch and dinner on Thursday. He finished 4-for-5 at the plate with four runs, a double, a home run and three runs batted in.

Bianucci in his RoughRider days, circa 2011.

Bianucci in his RoughRider days, circa 2011.

 

 

Listen to catcher Tomás Telis regale his experience at the All-Star game and touch on modifications to his stance behind the dish:

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

 

‘Riders Rewind – June 25

Miss the last RoughRiders game? Catch up on the action or relive the highlights with ‘Riders Rewind, a daily capsule of yesterday’s big moments. Listen to previous editions of ‘Riders Rewind here.

The ‘Riders reached the end of an exhausting 12-day road trip at long last on Sunday. Click here to read the full game recap.

Star of the Game: RHP Jerad Eickhoff – 7.0IP, 4H, R, 0BB, 6K

The sturdy right-hander from Evansville, Indiana turned in his third outing of seven or more outings this season and first since May 5. With a runner on third base in the fourth inning, Eickhoff chunked a pitch in the dirt that escaped the clutches of catcher Patrick Cantwell and brought home Arkansas’ only run of the game. The play seemed to light a fire under Jerad, who did not allow a baserunner the rest of his outing and retired the final 12 batters he faced in succession. The soon-to-be 24-year-old carries a 5-5 record with a 4.23 ERA through 83 innings.

In case you missed it:

-The RoughRiders are now 16-8 against the North Division this season. Every team in the South Division defeated its inter-divisional opponent on Wednesday.

-Five players in Frisco’s batting lineup last night debuted against the Travelers as the teams last met on April 15.

-Those five included Ryan Strausborger, who also made his 2014 Double-A debut, and went 2-for-4 with a run, a double and two RBI. It was his first multi-RBI game of the season.

-Fans may remember Arkansas DH Mike Bianucci, who played for the RoughRiders in 2011. More recently, Bianucci played at Dr Pepper Ballpark as a member of Triple-A Round Rock when the Express came to town for a preseason exhibition tilt on March 30. In that game, Bianucci blasted a home run and scored twice, but was released from the Rangers organization less than one week later.

 

Thanks for tuning in,

-Chris V.

 

Texas League All-Star Game Recap

The 2014 Texas League All-Star Game is in the books, which means we get to look at how the league-wide record ten RoughRiders faired in the contest.

Luke Jackson was the starting pitcher for the South All-Stars and did his job by striking out two of his three batters faced. In the top of the fourth Jake Smolinski moved Rhymer Liriano to third on a sharp ground ball out to third, and Liriano later scored to give the South a 1-0 lead.

The bottom half of that frame is one that Hooks pitcher Kyle Smith would like back as he issued a lead-off double to Brain Hernandez. Cody Stanley followed suit with a two-run homer and the North went out in front 2-1.

Alec Asher took the mound in the fifth for his first appearance in the league’s All-Star game and Brain Humphries greeted him with a double to centerfield. Cristhian Adames singled Humphries to third and a wild pitch by Asher gave the North an insurance run and a 3-1 lead.

Odubel Herrera singled to lead things off in the eighth, but a double play and a line drive out ended any chance of the South tying or re-taking the lead in the contest.

The ninth inning was similar to the eighth as a RoughRider (Smolinski) singled to begin the frame, but the North All-Stars held pat and escaped Dickey-Stephens Park with a 3-1 victory.

Here is how the other ‘Riders faired in the contest:

-LF Jake Smolinski: 1/4, SO

-3B Ryan Rua: 0/4, Home Run Derby Champion

  • Rua blasted a total of 16 home runs (eight in each round)

-DH/C Tomás Telis: 0/4

-PH Odubel Herrera: 1/1

-2B Guilder Rodriguez: 0/2, 2SO

-RHP Luke Jackson (starter): 1.0IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 2K, 3BF

-RHP Alec Asher: 1.0IP, R, 2H, 5BF, WP

-RHP Phil Klein: DNP

-LHP Edwar Cabrera: DNP

-2B Rougned Odor: DNP

 

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