The Texas Rangers had 9 good players out on the field day in and day out this year. There wasn’t anybody on the team that drew a groan anytime they left the dugout. However, it is always in a team’s best interest to look around for even better players and what better place to look than one’s own minor league system? Here are a few players who I have reviewed and think have a shot playing in the big leagues soon.
Alfaro is the team’s top prospect right now. While calling Alfaro up for the 2013-2014 season seems a little bit unrealistic he still deserves to have his talent assessed before the team enters into their next season.
Alfaro is a 6-foot-2, 185-pound, 20-year-old catcher from Colombia. He is currently playing for Texas’ Advanced A team in Myrtle Beach. During his 2013 season in the minors he hit .265 with 18 home runs and 72 runs scored. While those numbers aren’t making me jump out of my seat, they aren’t bad for a 20-year-old with minimal experience in the big leagues.
Is he going to be coming for A.J. Pierzynski’s job? No. Although he plays the same style of ball as A.J., focusing more on being an offensive catcher than a defensive one, he is still years behind in experience from the starting catcher. However, Rangers fans should keep their eyes peeled for highlights of this guy on the SportsCenter top 10 reel.
Sardinas is another top prospect working his way up through the Ranger’s minor league system. Currently playing for the Frisco RoughRiders this 20-year-old short stop has skills comparable to those of Elvis Andrus and Jurickson Profar.
He is a switch hitter and has shown equal amounts of potential from both sides of the plate, a skill many ‘switch hitters’ don’t have. This last year he hit .288 with 149 hits and 81 runs scored. While he won’t be handing out home run ball souvenirs, only hitting 2 homers all year, he shows his worth at the plate by slicing line drives to all parts of the outfield. Gifted with super-human quickness and speed, Sardinas is able to get to tricky balls in the field and also run aggressively on the base paths.
Wilmer Font is a 6-foot-4 right-handed pitcher from Venezuela. This is a guy who has already had some experience playing in the Major Leagues. He had to leave in 2011 due to Tommy John surgery, but he is hoping to come back stronger than ever.
His best pitch is his fastball, which he can crank up into the upper 90’s. He also throws a noteworthy changeup to keep hitters on their toes. His other two pitches, curveball and slider, both need some refining but are not terrible pitches. Font will definitely be working hard this offseason to become a starter for the Rangers so look for him during preseason games.
Gallo is my personal favorite prospect. He is a 6-foot-5, 205-pound third baseman from Las Vegas. Instead of going to LSU as a third baseman/closer, Gallo was drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 2012 draft. In high school Gallo was a pitcher and could crank his fastball up into the mid 90’s. However, he decided to give up pitching and stick to hitting once he entered the draft.
The 19-year-old has record setting power as he set an Arizona League record for home runs in his pro debut. In 2013 he had a .251 average with 40 home runs and 86 runs scored.
His biggest downfall is that his swing is too long. Gallo strikes out a lot, which explains his sub-par batting average. He had 172 K’s this past year, a number that will have to drop dramatically before the slugger can make his way to the big leagues. He is currently playing for the A Full team the Hickory Crawdads so he has a bit of a journey in front of him before he steps onto the field in Arlington. Look out for this young power hitter in seasons to come!
With lots of talent working its way up to the Major Leagues the Rangers have a promising few seasons ahead of them.