Saddle Up: Riders at San Antonio (5/5/16)

GAME #26
Frisco RoughRiders (19-6) at San Antonio Missions (9-17)
Thursday, May 5 – 7:05 p.m.
Wolff Stadium (San Antonio, TX)
—————————————–

Watch: MiLB.TV (San Antonio feed)
Listen: Streaming online and on the TuneIn Radio app (Nathan Barnett)
Live stats: Click here
—————————————–
This series: Game 3 of 4 (Riders lead, 2-0)
This season: Game 7 of 32 (Riders lead, 6-0)

041416 Lopez, Frank (Photo Credit - Frisco RoughRiders)

Lefty Frank Lopez gets the start for the Riders tonight in San Antonio

FRISCO LINEUP

  1. Isiah Kiner-Falefa – SS
  2. Garrett Weber – 2B
  3. Lewis Brinson – CF
  4. Ryan Cordell – DH
  5. Ronald Guzman – 1B
  6. Alex Burg – C
  7. Zach Cone – LF
  8. Preston Beck – RF
  9. Luis Mendez – 3B

LHP Frank Lopez (2-0, 3.25 ERA)

RIDERS RECAP: Tuesday at San Antonio (W, 8-6)

Box Score
Recap
Postgame Notes

SETTING THE STAGE (full game notes here)

LAST TIME OUT:
In come-from-behind fashion, the RoughRiders toppled the Missions 8-6 on Wednesday night…Down 6-3 after five innings, Frisco scored a pair of runs in the sixth and three runs in the eighth to move ahead for good…ZACH CONE drove in a pair of runs, and JUAN GRULLON earned the win, firing three innings of one-run ball in relief..RYNE SLACK and MATT BUSHclosed things out with perfect eighth and ninth innings respectively.

ON A MISSION:
With the win last night, the RoughRiders are 6-0 against San Antonio this season and have won their last nine games against the Missions, dating back to last season. The RoughRiders have dominated the season-series thus far, outscoring the Missions by 1.8 runs per game, hitting .286 to San Antonio’s .231. The Riders are outhomering the Missions 6-3 and have 19 extra-base hits to San Antonio’s 12. The Missions have the edge in one cateogory, however: stolen bases, where they lead 7 to 1.

COMEBACK KIDS:
Coming from behind again on Wednesday for a victory, the RoughRiders now have nine comeback wins of their 19 this season. Five of the last eight Riders wins have come when the team trailed at one point, including three straight April 28-30.

RIDING INTO THE HISTORY BOOKS:
At 19-6, the RoughRiders have the best 25-game start in team history, besting the 2008 squad. The 2008 RoughRiders, 18-7 through 25 games, finished with an 84-56 record and lost to Arkansas in the Texas League championship series.

‘DELL-IGHTFUL START:
RYAN CORDELL has been on a roll early in the season, currently in the top five of eight major statistical categories in the Texas League, including batting avergae (5th, .341), slugging (3rd, .659), RBI (2nd,24), doubles (2nd, 9), runs (2nd, 22), and extra-base hits (2nd, 16). He’s already tied or surpassed many of his stats with Frisco from last year, when he hit .217 with five doubles, five home runs, and 18 RBI in 56 games. Cordell was rewarded with Texas League Player of the Month honors Monday, after winning Player of the Week last Monday. The 24-year-old hit .363 in April with five home runs (two grand slams) and 22 RBI.

GOING STREAKING:
Cordell has not only been off to a great start, but he’s been producing consistently for Frisco early in 2016. Although his 17-game hitting streak came to an end after going 0-for-3 Monday, he contimued his season-long on-base streak to 24 games last night with a single in the first. Dating back to the final three games of 2015, he has reached base in 27 straight contests.

“ONE”-DERFUL IN CLOSE GAMES:
Despite leading the Texas League in run differential (+40), Frisco has played in seven one-run contests, winning five, over the last 11 games. The Riders have a 6-3 record in games decided by one run this year and are 3-0 in games decided by two runs, including the win last night.

FIRST FRAME FUN:
After scoring just one first-inning run in the first 11 games, the Riders have outscored opponents, 21-8, in the last 14 first innings. Frisco has scored at least one first-inning run in four of six games against San Antonio this year.

THE ‘PEN IS MIGHTIER:
Part of the key for the Riders historic start to the season has been the strong bullpen, protecting leads late in games. The bullpen holds an ERA of just 2.57 through the first 25 games and has wiggled out of numerous late-game jams. MATT BUSHhas five saves, ADAM PARKS has three, and the team is 9-for-10 in save situations.

CRANKING UP CROOKED NUMBERS:
Early in the season, the RoughRiders have shown an ability to not only score in bunches but keep opponents from doing the same. The RoughRiders have tallied 10 innings of four or more runs (five four-run innings, four five-run frames and a six-spot). Meanwhile, the Riders have only allowed six innings of more than two runs.

SEPARATION IN THE SIXTH:
The RoughRiders have found immense success, both at the plate and on the mound, in the sixth inning this season. Frisco has outscored opponents, 27-9, in the sixth frame through 25 games. The Riders struck for their biggest inning of the year with a six-run sixth on April 14 vs. Northwest Arkansas and outscored the Missions 2-0 last night in the sixth.

RANGER DANGER:
The RoughRiders aren’t the only Rangers affiliate off to a hot start. Overall, the Rangers farm system is 70-32 (.686), which is the best winning percentage among all minor-league systems. Class A-Advanced High Desert enters the day at 19-8, while Class-A Hickory is 17-8, and Triple-A Round Rock is 15-10. Round Rock was recently ranked the fifth-best Minor League team (any level) by MLB.com’s Jim Callis.

OPPOSING STARTER:
Bryce Morrow makes his third Double-A start for the Missions this season, coming out of Extended Spring Training…The right-hander signed out of the Independent Frontier League in 2013 is in his third season in the Padres system…He split last season between Class A-Short Season, Double-A, and Triple-A…In San Antonio last year, the 28-year-old made 13 outings, including 5 starts, going 5-3 with a 4.01 ERA, striking out 34 and walking 16 in 49 1/3 innings of work… He throws with 3/4 arm slot, with a 4-seam fastball, a 2-seam fastball, a slider, and a changeup.

Matta’s moves hype up Riders

Erick “Shaq” Matta isn’t a member of the Riders active roster, but that doesn’t stop him from making contributions to the squad. In addition to helping out as a bullpen catcher with the RoughRiders, Matta has assumed the unofficial role of pre-game motivator by way of a short dance.

The routine takes place in the Riders dugout, shortly before each game. Matta gets in the middle of his teammates, who circle around him, and get energized by watching him dance. The ensuing claps, chants, and cheers from his teammates are noticeable around the ballpark.

Matta, the 22-year-old catcher, was a member of the active roster for a short while earlier this season and played in one game on April 18. The native of San Juan, Puerto Rico says the tradition started early in the season on a day when the energy wasn’t quite at normal levels before a game.

“I said, ‘let’s go do that’ and see the reaction after that,” said Matta. “Now, they do it for motivation.”

“I like it because – you know, Puerto Ricans, Latins, they like dance, you know?” said Matta. “Sometimes, the American guys don’t like that, but now, they like it.”

It’s a simple dance, but it’s brought Matta and his teammates closer together, while giving them a little extra energy boost before they take the field.

As Matta puts it, “I’m not on the roster, but I feel like I am.”

– Ryan

Baseball term of the day: Dancer – A knuckleball

(term from The Dickson Baseball Dictionary

Saddle Up: Riders at San Antonio (5/4/16)

GAME #25
Frisco RoughRiders (18-6) at San Antonio Missions (9-16)
Wednesday, May 4 – 7:05 p.m.
Wolff Stadium (San Antonio, TX)
—————————————–

Watch: MiLB.TV (San Antonio feed)
Listen: Streaming online and on the TuneIn Radio app (Nathan Barnett)
Live stats: Click here
—————————————–
This series: Game 2 of 4 (Riders lead, 1-0)
This season: Game 6 of 32 (Riders lead, 5-0)

26642108932_600c311070_z

Alex Burg drove in a pair of runs in Tuesday’s 3-0 win at San Antonio

FRISCO LINEUP

  1. Isiah Kiner-Falefa – SS
  2. Garrett Weber – 3B
  3. Ryan Cordell – CF
  4. Ronald Guzman – 1B
  5. Alex Burg – DH
  6. Preston Beck – DH
  7. Zach Cone – LF
  8. Alberto Triunfel – 2B
  9. Kellin Deglan – C

RHP Reed Garrett (0-0, 3.09 ERA)

RIDERS RECAP: Tuesday at San Antonio (W, 3-0)

Box Score
Recap
Postgame Notes

SETTING THE STAGE (full game notes here)

LAST TIME OUT:
The RoughRiders shut out the San Antonio Missions 3-0 on Tuesday night, in a game that was closer than the final score indicated…Frisco plated a run on a bases loaded hit batter in the first inning and did not score again until the ninth…VICTOR PAYANO struck out a career-high 13 batters and walked none in 6 2/3 scoreless innings…ADAM PARKS (1.1 IP) and MATT BUSH (1.0 IP) completed the shutout…All three runs were driven in without a base hit (HBP, SF, and fielder’s choice)…The RoughRiders are now 5-0 against the Missions this season.

RIDING INTO THE HISTORY BOOKS:
At 18-6, the RoughRiders have the best 24-game start in team history, besting the 2008 squad. The 2008 RoughRiders finished with an 84-56 record and lost to Arkansas in the Texas League championship series.

‘DELL-IGHTFUL START:
RYAN CORDELL has been on a roll early in the season, currently leading the Texas League in slugging percentage (.678) and ranking second in doubles (9), RBI (23), and runs (21). In addition, Cordell has more extra-base hits (16) than singles (14). He’s already tied or surpassed many of his stats with Frisco from last year, when he hit .217 with five doubles, five home runs, and 18 RBI in 56 games. Cordell was rewarded with Texas League Player of the Month honors Monday, after winning Player of the Week last Monday. The 24-year-old hit .363 in April with five home runs (two grand slams) and 22 RBI.

GOING STREAKING:
Cordell has not only been off to a great start, but he’s been producing consistently for Frisco early in 2016. Although his 17-game hitting streak came to an end after going 0-for-3 Monday, he drew a walk to increase his league-high on-base streak to 23 games. Dating back to the final three games of 2015, he has reached base in 26 straight contests.

TO THE VICTOR GO THE SPOILS:
VICTOR PAYANO was dominant in yesterday’s start against San Antonio. In 6 2/3 shutout innings, Payano fanned a career-high 13 batters. It was the most strikeouts by a Riders pitcher since Robbie Erlin fanned 14 batters against Corpus Christi on June 26, 2011 and the second-most in team history in a single-game.

YU BETTER BELIEVE IT:
Right-handed pitcher YU DARVISH threw two scoreless innings for the RoughRiders Sunday afternoon, allowing just one walk. It was the right-hander’s first rehabilitation start, as he continues to recover from Tommy John surgery last year.

BURG BUSTING BACK ON TO THE SCENE:
Since returning from a short stay with Triple-A Round Rock, ALEX BURG has been on a tear for Frisco. In his first eight games back, Burg is hitting .407 (11-for-27), with three home runs and nine RBI. Burg has hits in seven of eight games since his return.

“ONE”-DERFUL IN CLOSE GAMES:
Despite leading the Texas League in run differential (+38), Frisco has played in seven one-run contests, winning five, over the last 10 games. The Riders have a 6-3 record in games decided by one run this year.

STARTING SERIES STRONG:
With yesterday’s win, the RoughRiders improved to 8-0 in series openers this season. The Riders have won five of their first seven series, including a four-game sweep against San Antonio at Dr Pepper Ballpark last week.

FIRST FRAME FUN:
After scoring just one first-inning run in the first 11 games, the Riders have outscored opponents, 19-6, in the last 13 first innings. Frisco has scored a first-inning run in three of five games against San Antonio this year.

THE ‘PEN IS MIGHTIER:
Part of the key for the Riders historic start to the season has been the strong bullpen, protecting leads late in games. The bullpen holds an ERA of just 2.61 through the first 24 games and has wiggled out of numerous late-game jams. MATT BUSHhas four saves, ADAM PARKS has three, and the team is 8-for-9 in save situations.

CRANKING UP CROOKED NUMBERS:
Early in the season, the RoughRiders have shown an ability to not only score in bunches but keep opponents from doing the same. The RoughRiders have tallied 10 innings of four or more runs (five four-run innings, four five-run frames and a six-spot). Meanwhile, the Riders have only allowed five innings of more than two runs.

SEPARATION IN THE SIXTH:
The RoughRiders have found immense success, both at the plate and on the mound, in the sixth inning this season. Frisco has outscored opponents, 25-9, in the sixth frame through 24 games. The Riders struck for their biggest inning of the year with a six-run sixth on April 14 vs. Northwest Arkansas.

RANGER DANGER:
The RoughRiders aren’t the only Rangers affiliate off to a hot start. Overall, the Rangers farm system is 68-31 (.687), which is the best winning percentage among all minor-league systems. Class A-Advanced High Desert enters the day at 19-7, while Class-A Hickory is 17-8, and Triple-A Round Rock is 14-10. Round Rock was recently ranked the fifth-best Minor League team (any level) by MLB.com’s Jim Callis.

TOP OF THE CLASS:
The RoughRiders enter the season with six players ranked in either Baseball America or MLBPipeline.com’s Rangers Top 30 Prospects. LEWIS BRINSON, the No. 2 prospect in Rangers’ farm system according to MLBPipeline.com and Baseball America, returns to Frisco. He appeared in 28 games for the Riders last season, hitting .291 with six home runs and 23 RBI before being promoted to Round Rock. Brinson is joined by five other players named in the lists—RYAN CORDELL (No. 15 in MLB, No. 11 in BA), RONALD GUZMAN (23, 29), JOSE LECLERC (25, 21), SAM WOLFF (26, NR), and CONNOR SADZECK (27, 26).

OPPOSING STARTER:
Part of the Zach Greinke trade that sent the right-hander from the Brewers to the Angels (along with SS Jean Segura and P Ariel Pena), Johnny Hellweg is now in his first season with the Padres, signing as a free agent in November…Originally drafted by the Marlins in the 46th round in 2007, Hellweg passed up going pro, playing a year at Florida Community College before signing with the Angels for $150,000 as a 16th-round pick in 2008…The Baseball America Prospect Handbook rated Hellweg as the 31st-best prospect in the Angel’s organization in the spring of 2010. He was moved up to #23 in the winter before 2011 spring training…They had Johnny at #6 in the offseason before 2013 spring camps opened, and he moved up again in the spring of 2014, when he was rated 4th-best in the Brewers’ farm system…But Hellweg was dropped to #21 in the spring of 2015…Hellweg was named the Brewers’ 2013 Minor League Pitcher of the Year a day before rejoining the Major League rotation for a start against the Cubs…He also was named the Triple-A Pacific Coast League’s Player of the Year for 2013,only the fourth Nashville Sounds pitcher to win the league’s award and first since R.A. Dickey (2007)…Repertoire: Hellweg has a lively 91-98 mph FASTBALL with sink, an 81-83 mph slurvy-CURVEBALL, as well as a CHANGEUP.

 

Payano posts career night in “Alamo City”

It’s a good time to wear the name “Payano” on the back of your jersey in the Rangers organization. Last week, Class-A Hickory’s Pedro Payano dealt a complete game, one-hit shutout and earned South Atlantic League Pitcher of the Week honors for his performance. Tuesday, Frisco’s Victor Payano (unrelated to Pedro) put himself in the running for Texas League Pitcher of the Week with 6 2/3 shutout innings, while striking out a career-high 13 hitters.

The 13 punchouts were second-most all-time in the 14-year history of the RoughRiders, behind Robbie Erlin, who struck out 14 Corpus Christi hitters on June 26, 2011. Tuesday’s game also marked just the 29th double-digit strikeout game in Riders history (Payano has two of them, including a 10-strikeout game last year on August 4). Here’s the list of best single-game strikeout totals in team history:

STRIKEOUTS PITCHER DATE
14 Robbie Erlin 6/26/11 at CC
13 Victor Payano 5/3/16 at SA
12 Jake Thompson 5/4/15 at CC
Thomas Diamond 6/28/06 at TUL
John Danks 5/15/06 at SA
11 Chad Bell 5/21/15 vs MID
Neil Ramirez 5/14/13 vs MID
Guillermo Moscoso 5/25/09 vs SA
Ken Chenard 8/29/07 at CC
Thomas Diamond 5/12/06 at SA
John Hudgins 7/1/04 vs SA
Kameron Loe 5/2/04 at MID

As impressive as the 13 strikeouts were last night, the other big stat on Payano’s line was the zero in the walks column. It’s the first time he’s done that in 15 starts, dating all the way back to July 10th of last year. In the 14 previous starts, he had walked 44 hitters, including 13 in his first four outings this year.

His win last night moved him to 3-0, his dropped his ERA almost a full run from 4.15 to 3.18, and his WHIP came down from 1.43 to 1.24. There’s no telling whether the southpaw will be able to keep pitching at the level he was at last night (13 strikeouts not necessary), but if he can, it’ll only make the starting rotation stronger and deeper, and will make this Frisco team tough to slow down as it charges toward a first half title.

– Ryan

Baseball term of the day: Pasteboard – An admission ticket to a baseball game

(term from The Dickson Baseball Dictionary

Saddle Up: Riders at San Antonio (5/3/16)

GAME #24
Frisco RoughRiders (17-6) at San Antonio Missions (9-15)
Tuesday, May 3 – 7:05 p.m.
Wolff Stadium (San Antonio, TX)
—————————————–

Watch: MiLB.TV (San Antonio feed)
Listen: Streaming online and on the TuneIn Radio app (Nathan Barnett)
Live stats: Click here
—————————————–
This series: Game 1 of 4
This season: Game 5 of 32 (Riders lead, 4-0)

Weber

Garrett Weber went 3-for-4 Monday and has multi-hit games in his last three games

FRISCO LINEUP

  1. Luis Mendez – SS
  2. Garrett Weber – 3B
  3. Lewis Brinson – CF
  4. Ronald Guzman – 1B
  5. Alex Burg – DH
  6. Zach Cone – LF
  7. Preston Beck – RF
  8. Alberto Triunfel – 2B
  9. Kellin Deglan – C

LHP Victor Payano (2-0, 4.15 ERA)

RIDERS RECAP: Monday vs. Corpus Christi (L, 8-2)

Box Score
Recap
Postgame Notes

SETTING THE STAGE (full game notes here)

LAST TIME OUT:
The RoughRiders suffered their largest defeat of the season, falling 8-2 to the Corpus Christi Hooks on Monday night at Dr Pepper Ballpark…The Hooks scored four runs in the first, including two on a single from Chase McDonald, who drove in 11 runs in the series…The Riders were shutout until LUIS MENDEZ homered in the eighth inning, but Frisco was down 7-1 at that point…Both teams traded runs in the ninth inning…SAM WOLFF lasted a season-low four innings and walked a season-high five batters.

RIDING INTO THE HISTORY BOOKS:
At 17-6, the RoughRiders have the best 23-game start in team history, besting the 2008 squad. The 2008 RoughRiders finished with an 84-56 record and lost to Arkansas in the Texas League championship series.

‘DELL-IGHTFUL START:
RYAN CORDELL has been on a roll early in the season, currently ranking second in the Texas League in doubles (9), RBI (23), and slugging percentage (.678), In addition, Cordell has more extra-base hits (16) than singles (14). He’s already tied or surpassed many of his stats with Frisco from last year, when he hit .217 with five doubles, five home runs, and 18 RBI in 56 games. Cordell was rewarded with Texas League Player of the Month honors yesterday, after winning Player of the Week last Monday. The 24-year-old hit .363 in April with five home runs (two grand slams) and 22 RBI.

GOING STREAKING:
Cordell has not only been off to a great start, but he’s been producing consistently for Frisco early in 2016. Although his 17-game hitting streak came to an end after going 0-for-3 yesterday, he drew a walk to increase his league-high on-base streak to 23 games. Dating back to the final three games of 2015, he has reached base in 26 straight contests.

YU BETTER BELIEVE IT:
Right-handed pitcher YU DARVISH threw two scoreless innings for the RoughRiders Sunday afternoon, allowing just one walk. It was the right-hander’s first rehabilitation start, as he continues to recover from Tommy John surgery last year.

GIMENEZ JIVING IN REHAB STINT:
In a weekend highlighted by Darvish and JOSH HAMILTON, catcher CHRIS GIMENEZ has been rehabbing with Frisco since Monday, and has performed very well. He has reached base in six of the seven games and has driven in a run in four. Gimenez has split his time between catcher and designated hitter so far.

BURG BUSTING BACK ON TO THE SCENE:
Since returning from a short stay with Triple-A Round Rock, ALEX BURG has been on a tear for Frisco. In his first seven games back, Burg is hitting .440 (11-for-25), with three home runs and seven RBI. Burg has hits in all seven games since his return.

“ONE”-DERFUL IN CLOSE GAMES:
Despite leading the Texas League in run differential (+35), Frisco’s last nine games have been decided by a total of 16 runs, including seven one-run contests (5-2). The Riders are 6-3 in one-run games this year.

STARTING SERIES STRONG:
With Friday night’s win, the RoughRiders improved to 7-0 in series openers this season. The Riders have won five of their first seven series, including a series sweep against San Antonio at home last week.

FIRST FRAME FUN:
After scoring just one first-inning run in the first 11 games, the Riders have outscored opponents, 18-6, in the last 11 first innings. Frisco scored runs in the first inning of the first two games against San Antonio last week.

THE ‘PEN IS MIGHTIER:
Part of the key for the Riders historic start to the season has been the strong bullpen, protecting leads late in games. The bullpen holds an ERA of just 2.68 through the first 23 games, and has wiggled out of numerous late-game jams. MATT BUSH and ADAM PARKS each have three saves so far for Frisco, and the team is 7-for-7 in save chances.

CRANKING UP CROOKED NUMBERS:
Early in the season, the RoughRiders have shown an ability to not only score in bunches but keep opponents from doing the same. The RoughRiders have tallied 10 innings of four or more runs (five four-run innings, four five-run frames and a six-spot). Meanwhile, the Riders have only allowed five innings of more than two runs.

SEPARATION IN THE SIXTH:
The RoughRiders have found immense success, both at the plate and on the mound, in the sixth inning this season. Frisco has outscored opponents, 25-9, in the sixth frame through 23 games. The Riders struck for their biggest inning of the year with a six-run sixth on April 14 vs. Northwest Arkansas.

RANGER DANGER:
The RoughRiders aren’t the only Rangers affiliate off to a hot start. Overall, the Rangers farm system is 66-30 (.688), which is the best winning percentage among all minor-league systems. Class A-Advanced High Desert enters the day at 19-6, while Class-A Hickory is 17-8, and Triple-A Round Rock is 13-10. Round Rock was recently ranked the fifth-best Minor League team (any level) by MLB.com’s Jim Callis.

OPPOSING STARTER:
Former RoughRider Fabio Castillo gets the start for the Missions today…The right-handed hurler is off to a good start, allowing three or fewer runs in his first four starts before Frisco hit him hard last time out…the 27-year-old spent seven seasons in the Rangers organization and three years with Frisco (2010-2012)…This is his first year with the Padres after spending time in the Giants, Reds, and Orioles systems and pitched last year in the Mexican League…REPERTOIRE: fastball (93-98), 86-88 mph slider, that replaced his curve with quick, lateral action a lot like a cutter. He also has a 78-80 mph changeup.

Weber providing boost from the bottom of the order

The RoughRiders dropped their second straight contest last night, falling 8-2 to Corpus Christi. One of the bright spots in Monday’s game, though, was the bottom of the order,

26752855676_e55b3b0148_zwhich combined to go 6-12 with both RBI (the top six spots in the order finished 4-23). Preston Beck was 2-4 with an RBI and Luis Mendez hit his first home run of the season for the RoughRiders.

“I think it was just beginning of the season for me,” said Weber about the slow start. “I just knew that I had to get the hang of it and get in the groove of Double-A pitching again.”

And then there’s Garett Weber, who continued his impressive stretch as of late with a 3-4 night at the plate. After going hitless in his first nine at-bats, the 27-year-old infielder is 8-for his last-16 at the plate, including three straight multi-hit games. And all the while, he’s also drawn four walks and scored six times.

Weber joined the Riders from Extended Spring Training on Monday to help fill some of the void left by the injured Luis Marte. It’s his first season in the Rangers organization after spending the first five years of his career as a member of the Diamondbacks farm system. The Rangers acquired him this December in the minor league phase of the Rule 5 Draft. The Fresno State product was a career .299 hitter in his five seasons with the Arizona organization, and reached Triple-A Reno in 2014 and 2015.

26622997062_544f6acb8f_zWeber, who played his 500th career game on Sunday, is an intriguing addition the roster, and seems like someone that can provide some veteran leadership later in the season as he gets his feet more firmly under him in the Rangers organization.

“I feel like as the year goes on, [I’ll] maybe try to take on a little bit of a leadership role,” said Weber. “I’ve been there, I’ve been to the playoffs in Double-A, I’ve been in the playoffs in Triple-A. So, to kind of get there, maybe share some of my experience along the way.”

Once Marte comes off the DL, we’ll find out what’s next for Weber. However, if he keeps playing at this level, it’ll be hard to put him anywhere below Double-A.

For more on his transition to the Rangers organization and his thoughts on his first week with Frisco, listen to my interview with him that aired yesterday on the Dr Pepper Pregame Show.

– Ryan

Baseball term of the day: Weed eater – A ground ball that hugs the ground

(term from The Dickson Baseball Dictionary

Saddle Up: Riders vs. Corpus Christi (5/2/16)

GAME #23
Frisco RoughRiders (17-5) vs Corpus Christi Hooks (10-12)
Monday, May 2 – 7:05 p.m.
Dr Pepper Ballpark (Frisco, TX)
—————————————–

Watch: MiLB.TV (Nathan Barnett and Ryan Rouillard)
Listen: Streaming online and on the TuneIn Radio app (Barnett and Rouillard)
Live stats: Click here
—————————————–

This series: Game 4 of 4 (Riders lead, 2-1)
This season: Game 7 of 32 (Riders lead, 4-2)

FRISCO LINEUP

  1. Isiah Kiner-Falefa – SS
  2. Chris Gimenez – C
  3. Lewis Brinson – RF
  4. Ryan Cordell – CF
  5. Alex Burg – DH
  6. Joe Jackson – LF
  7. Garrett Weber – 2B
  8. Preston Beck – 1B
  9. Luis Mendez – 3B

RHP Sam Wolff (4-0, 2.57 ERA)

RIDERS RECAP: Sunday vs. Corpus Christi (L, 4-3)

Box Score
Recap
Postgame Notes

SETTING THE STAGE (full game notes here)

LAST TIME OUT: Rangers All-Star pitcher YU DARVISH made the start for Frisco in front of the fourth-largest crowd in Dr Pepper Ballpark history. Darvish pitched well in his two innings, but the Riders still fell to the Hooks by a score of 4-3. LEWIS BRINSON and RYAN CORDELL clubbed back-to-back home runs in the first inning for the Riders, who saw their six-game winning streak snapped.

RIDING INTO THE HISTORY BOOKS: At 17-5, the RoughRiders have the best 22-game start in team history, besting the 2008 squad. The 2008 RoughRiders finished with an 84-56 record and lost to Arkansas in the Texas League championship series.

‘DELL-IGHTFUL START: RYAN CORDELL has been on a roll early in the season, currently ranking second in the Texas League in average (.357), doubles (9), home runs (6), RBI (23), and slugging percentage (.702), In addition, Cordell has more extra-base hits (16) than singles (14). He’s already tied or surpassed many of his stats with Frisco from last year, when he hit .217 with five doubles, five home runs and 18 RBI in 56 games. Cordell was rewarded with Texas League Player of the Month honors today, after winning Player of the Week last Monday. The 24-year-old hit .363 in April with five home runs and 22 RBI.

GOING STREAKING: Cordell has not only been off to a great start, but he’s been producing consistently for Frisco early in 2016. He rides a 17-game hit streak into today’s game and has been on base in all 22 contests this year, both of which are the Texas League’s longest streaks. Dating back to the final three games of 2015, he has reached base in 25 straight contests.

YU BETTER BELIEVE IT: Right-handed pitcher YU DARVISH threw two scoreless innings for the RoughRiders Sunday afternoon, allowing just one walk. It was the righthander’s first rehabilitation start, as he continues to recover from Tommy John surgery last year.

GIMENEZ JIVING IN REHAB STINT: In a weekend highlighted by Darvish and JOSH HAMILTON, catcher CHRIS GIMENEZ has been rehabbing with Frisco since Monday, and has performed very well. He has reached base in all six games, and has driven in a run in four. Gimenez has split his time between catcher and designated hitter so far.

BURG BUSTING BACK ON TO THE SCENE: Since returning from a short stay with Triple-A Round Rock, ALEX BURG has been on a tear for Frisco. In his first six games back, Burg is hitting .476 (10-for-21), with three home runs and seven RBI. Burg has hits in all six games since his return.

“ONE”-DERFUL IN CLOSE GAMES: Despite leading the Texas League in run differential (+41), Frisco’s last eight games have been decided by a total of 10 runs, including seven one-run contests (5-2). The Riders are 6-3 in one-run games this year.

SEEKING THE SERIES: With a win tonight, the Riders will win their sixth series out of seven total. It would also mark a second series win against Corpus Christi in as many tries, after only winning two of eight series against the Hooks in 2015.

FIRST FRAME FUN: After scoring just one first-inning run in the first 11 games, the Riders have outscored opponents, 18-2, in the last 11 first innings. The Riders have scored first-inning runs in five of six games against the Hooks this year, outscoring them, 12-2.

THE ‘PEN IS MIGHTIER: Part of the key for the Riders historic start to the season has been the strong bullpen, protecting leads late in games. The bullpen holds an ERA of just 2.62 through the first 22 games, and has wiggled out of numerous late-game jams. MATT BUSH and ADAM PARKS each have three saves so far for Frisco, and the team is 7-for-7 in save chances.

CRANKING UP CROOKED NUMBERS: Early in the season, the RoughRiders have shown an ability to not only score in bunches but keep opponents from doing the same. The RoughRiders have tallied 10 innings of four or more runs (five four-run innings, four five-run frames and a six-spot). Meanwhile, the Riders have only allowed four innings of more than two runs.

SEPARATION IN THE SIXTH: The RoughRiders have found immense success, both at the plate and on the mound, in the sixth inning this season. Frisco has outscored opponents, 25-8, in the sixth frame through 22 games. The Riders struck for their biggest inning of the year with a six-run sixth April 14 vs Northwest Arkansas.

STARTING SERIES STRONG: With Friday night’s win, the RoughRiders improved to 7-0 in series openers this season. The Riders have won five of their first six series, including a series victory at Corpus Christi last weekend.

RANGER DANGER: The RoughRiders aren’t the only Rangers affiliate off to a hot start. Overall, the Rangers farm system is 63-29 (.685), good for the second-best winning percentage among all minor-league systems. Class A-Advanced High Desert enters the day at 18-6, while Class-A Hickory is 16-8, and Triple-A Round Rock is 12-10. Round Rock was recently ranked the fifth-best Minor League team (any level) by MLB.com’s Jim Callis.

April by the Numbers

0 – Losses in series openers

1 – Place in Texas League South division standings

2 – Grand slams for Ryan Cordell

2.95 – Earned run average (lowest in league)

3 – Series sweeps

3.5 – Games ahead of second-place Midland

4 – Total losses

5 – Straight road wins to open the season

5.2 – Runs scored per game (most in league)

6 – Longest win streak (4/25-4/30)

– Wins in series openers

8 – Comeback wins

– Doubles for Cordell (leads league)

10 – Innings with four or more runs scored

11.1 – Consecutive scoreless innings pitched by Ryne Slack

12 – Longest game (innings), Riders came back to beat Arkansas 6-4

13 – Wins when leading after six innings (no losses)

14 – Singles for Cordell

15 – Extra-base hits for Cordell

16 – Cordell’s league-leading hit streak

17 – Total wins

18 – Home runs

19 – Consecutive batters retired by Richelson Pena (4/7-4/11)

20 – Runs scored by Cordell (leads league)

21 – Games played (best start in team history)

22 – RBI for Cordell (leads Rangers organization – MLB & MiLB)

24 – Sixth-inning runs

42 – Run differential (largest in league)

61 – Total wins by Rangers affiliates, more than any other farm system

6,682 – Average attendance (highest in league)

10,004 – Largest crowd at Dr Pepper Ballpark (4/30)

22910359192_a5a2cd2f94_o

– Steve

Baseball term of the day: automobile squint – The theory when automobiles first became popular that driving one adversely affected a ballplayer’s batting eye.

(term from The Dickson Baseball Dictionary)

Saddle Up: Riders vs Corpus Christi (5/1/16)

GAME #22
Frisco RoughRiders (17-4) vs Corpus Christi Hooks (9-12)
Sunday, May 1 – 4:05 p.m.
Dr Pepper Ballpark (Frisco, TX)
—————————————–

Watch: MiLB.TV (Nathan Barnett and Ryan Rouillard)
Listen: Streaming online and on the TuneIn Radio app (Barnett and Rouillard)
Live stats: Click here
—————————————–

Darvish

Yu Darvish makes the start for the Riders today, as he begins a rehab assignment

This series: Game 3 of 4 (Riders lead, 2-0)
This season: Game 6 of 32 (Riders lead, 4-1)

FRISCO LINEUP

  1. Isiah Kiner-Falefa – SS
  2. Chris Gimenez – C
  3. Lewis Brinson – CF
  4. Ryan Cordell – LF
  5. Ronald Guzman – 1B
  6. Zach Cone – RF
  7. Joe Jackson – DH
  8. Garrett Weber – 3B
  9. Alberto Triunfel – 2B

RHP Yu Darvish (0-0, -.– ERA)

RIDERS RECAP: Saturday vs. Corpus Christi (W, 4-3)
Video highlights
Box Score
Recap
Postgame Notes

SETTING THE STAGE (full game notes here)

LAST TIME OUT:
For the second straight night, the Riders staged a dramatic comeback late in the game, putting up three runs in the ninth to walk off on the Hooks, 4-3. ZACH CONE delivered the walk-off single, giving Frisco its second walk-off win of the homestand.CHASE McDONALD homered for the second time in as many games to get the Hooks a 2-1 lead in the sixth, and Corpus Christi added an unearned run in the 9th, canceling out an unearned run for the Riders in the second inning.

RIDING INTO THE HISTORY BOOKS:
At 17-4, the RoughRiders have the best 21-game start in team history, besting the 2008 squad. The 2008 RoughRiders finished with an 84-56 record and lost to Arkansas in the Texas League championship series.

‘DELL-IGHTFUL START:
RYAN CORDELL has been on a roll early in the season, leading the Texas League in average doubles (9), runs (20), and slugging percentage (.688), while he ranks second in many other categories. In addition, Cordell has more extra-base hits (15) than singles (14). He’s already tied or surpassed many of his stats with Frisco from last year, when he hit .217 with five doubles, five home runs and 18 RBI in 56 games.
GOING STREAKING:
Cordell has not only been off to a great start, but he’s been producing consistently for Frisco early in 2016. He rides a 16-game hit streak into today’s game and has been on base in all 21 contests this year, both of which are the Texas League’s longest streaks. Dating back to the final three games of 2015, he has reached base in 24 straight contests.

HERE COMES HAMILTON:
Rangers outfielder JOSH HAMILTON began his rehabilitation assignment with the RoughRiders Saturday, going 0-for-2 (flyout, reach on error) in four innings as the starting left fielder.

YU READY FOR DARVISH?:
Right-handed pitcher YU DARVISH is scheduled to begin a Major League rehabilitation assignment with the Riders today. The three-time American League All-Star is slateed to throw two innings or 30 pitches.

GIMENEZ JIVING IN REHAB STINT:
While Hamilton and Darvish are just arriving, catcher CHRIS GIMENEZ has been rehabbing with Frisco since Monday, and has performed very well. He has recorded hits in all five games, and has driven in a run in four. Gimenez has split his time between catcher and designated hitter so far.

BURG BUSTING BACK ON TO THE SCENE:
Since returning from a short stay with Triple-A Round Rock, ALEX BURG has been on a tear for Frisco. In his first six games back, Burg is hitting .476 (10-for-21), with three home runs and seven RBI. Burg has hits in all six games since his return.

“ONE”-DERFUL IN CLOSE GAMES:
Despite leading the Texas League in run differential (+42), Frisco’s last seven games have been decided by a total of nine runs, including six one-run contests (5-1). The Riders are 6-2 in one-run games this year.

FIRST FRAME FUN:
After scoring just one first-inning run in the first 11 games, the Riders have outscored opponents, 16-2, in the last ten first innings. The Riders have scored first-inning runs in four of five games against the Hooks this year, outscoring them, 10-2.

THE ‘PEN IS MIGHTIER:
Part of the key for the Riders historic start to the season has been the strong bullpen, protecting leads late in games. The bullpen holds an ERA of just 2.39 through the first 21 games, and has wiggled out of numerous late-game jams. MATT BUSH and ADAM PARKS each have three saves so far for Frisco, and the team is 7-for-7 in save chances.

CRANKING UP CROOKED NUMBERS:
Early in the season, the RoughRiders have shown an ability to not only score in bunches but keep opponents from doing the same. The RoughRiders have tallied 10 innings of four or more runs (five four-run innings, four five-run frames and a six-spot). Meanwhile, the Riders have only allowed four innings of more than two runs.

SEPARATION IN THE SIXTH:
The RoughRiders have found immense success, both at the plate and on the mound, in the sixth inning this season. Frisco has outscored opponents, 24-7, in the sixth frame through 21 games. The Riders struck for their biggest inning of the year with a six-run sixth April 14 vs Northwest Arkansas.

STARTING SERIES STRONG:
With Friday night’s win, the RoughRiders improved to 7-0 in series openers this season. The Riders have won five of their first six series, including a series victory at Corpus Christi last weekend.

RANGER DANGER:
The RoughRiders aren’t the only Rangers affiliate off to a hot start. Overall, the Rangers farm system is 61-27 (.693), good for the best winning percentage among all minor-league systems. Class A-Advanced High Desert enters the day at 17-6, while Class-A Hickory is 15-8, and Triple-A Round Rock is 12-9. Round Rock was recently ranked the fifth-best Minor League team (any level) by MLB.com’s Jim Callis.

Saddle Up: Riders vs. Corpus Christi (4/30/16)

GAME #21
Frisco RoughRiders (16-4) vs Corpus Christi Hooks (9-11)
Saturday, April 30 – 7:05 p.m.
Dr Pepper Ballpark (Frisco, TX)
—————————————–

Watch: MiLB.TV (Nathan Barnett and Ryan Rouillard)
Listen: Streaming online and on the TuneIn Radio app (Barnett and Rouillard)
Live stats: Click here
—————————————–

This series: Game 2 of 4 (Riders lead, 1-0)
This season: Game 5 of 32 (Riders lead, 3-1)

FRISCO LINEUP

  1. Isiah Kiner-Falefa – C
  2. Chris Gimenez – DH
  3. Josh Hamilton – LF
  4. Lewis Brinson – CF
  5. Ryan Cordell – RF
  6. Ronald Guzman – 1B
  7. Garrett Weber – 2B
  8. Luis Mendez – 3B
  9. Alberto Triunfel – SS

LHP Frank Lopez (2-0, 3.32 ERA)

RIDERS RECAP: Friday vs. Corpus Christi (W, 8-7)

Box Score
Recap
Postgame Notes

SETTING THE STAGE (full game notes here)

LAST TIME OUT: The Riders and Hooks were locked in a backand-forth affair, culminated by a dramatic five-run eighth inning that helped Frisco to an 8-7 win. The Hooks broke a 3-3 tie in the seventh on a Chase McDonald grand slam to center field, but the Riders countered back with the big eighth inning. CODY PALMQUIST worked two innings in his Double-A debut, and escaped a bases-loaded jam in the ninth to preserve the victory.

RIDING INTO THE HISTORY BOOKS: At 16-4, the RoughRiders have the best 20- game start in team history, besting the 2008 squad. The 2008 RoughRiders finished with an 84-56 record and lost to Arkansas in the Texas League championship series.

‘DELL-IGHTFUL START: RYAN CORDELL has been on a roll early in the season, leading the Texas League in average (.351), doubles (9), extra-base hits (15), RBI (22), and slugging percentage (.688). In addition, Cordell has more extra-base hits (15) than singles (12). He’s already tied or surpassed many of his stats with Frisco from last year, when he hit .217 with five doubles, five home runs and 18 RBI in 56 games.

GOING STREAKING: Cordell has not only been off to a great start, but he’s been producing consistently for Frisco early in 2016. He rides a 15-game hit streak into today’s game and has been on base in all 20 contests this year, both of which are the Texas League’s longest streaks. Dating back to the final three games of 2015, he has reached base in 23 straight contests.

HERE COMES HAMILTON: Rangers outfielder JOSH HAMILTON is scheduled to begin a Major League rehabilitation assignment with the RoughRiders today, as he recovers from left knee inflammation. This will be Hamilton’s fifth time rehabbing with the RoughRiders.

YU READY FOR SUNDAY?: Wednesday, the Rangers announced that righthanded pitcher YU DARVISH will begin a Major League rehabilitation assignment with the Riders. The three-time American League All-Star will make a start on Sunday when the RoughRiders host the Corpus Christi Hooks at 4:05 p.m. Darvish is scheduled to throw 2.0 innings or 30 pitches.

BURG BUSTING BACK ON TO THE SCENE: Since returning from a short stay with Triple-A Round Rock, ALEX BURG has been on a tear for Frisco. In his first six games back, Burg is hitting .476 (10-for-21), with three home runs and seven RBI. Burg has hits in all six games since his return.

“ONE”-DERFUL IN CLOSE GAMES: Despite leading the Texas League in run differential (+41), Frisco’s last six games have been decided by a total of eight runs, including five one-run contests. The Riders are 5-2 in one-run games this year.

STARTING SERIES STRONG: With Friday night’s win, the RoughRiders improved to 7-0 in series openers this season. The Riders have won five of their first six series, including a series victory at Corpus Christi last weekend.

FIRST FRAME FUN: After scoring just one first-inning run in the first 11 games, the Riders have outscored opponents, 16-2, in the last nine first innings. The Riders have scored first-inning runs in all four game against the Hooks this year, outscoring them, 10-2.

THE ‘PEN IS MIGHTIER: Part of the key for the Riders historic start to the season has been the strong bullpen, protecting leads late in games. The bullpen holds an ERA of just 2.49 through the first 20 games, and has wiggled out of numerous late-game jams. MATT BUSH and ADAM PARKS each have three saves so far for Frisco, and the team is 7-for-7 in save chances.

CRANKING UP CROOKED NUMBERS: Early in the season, the RoughRiders have shown an ability to not only score in bunches but keep opponents from doing the same. The RoughRiders have tallied 10 innings of four or more runs (five four-run innings, four five-run frames and a six-spot). Meanwhile, the Riders have only allowed four innings of more than two runs.

SEPARATION IN THE SIXTH: The RoughRiders have found immense success, both at the plate and on the mound, in the sixth inning this season. Frisco has outscored opponents, 24-5, in the sixth frame through 20 games. The Riders struck for their biggest inning of the year with a six-run sixth April 14 vs Northwest Arkansas.

RANGER DANGER: The RoughRiders aren’t the only Rangers affiliate off to a hot start. Overall, the Rangers farm system is 59-25 (.702), good for the best winning percentage among all minor-league systems. Class A-Advanced High Desert enters the day with the one of the best records in all of Minor League Baseball at 17-5, while Class-A Hickory is 15-7, and Triple-A Round Rock is 11-9. Round Rock was recently ranked the fifth-best Minor League team (any level) by MLB.com’s Jim Callis.

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