Results tagged ‘ PCL all star ’
By Will Weinstock
In Part II of an Express Tracks series chronicling the highlights of each month of the Round Rock Express 2012 season. This article covers the highlights of June. The Express finished the month with a record of 13-15 (38-48 overall) and are now 11.5 games back in the Southern Division.
Player of the Month: LHP Martin Perez
Highlights of June:
- OF Joey Butler was selected as a PCL All-Star in Buffalo on July 11.
- On June 30 the Texas Rangers won 7-2 against the Oakland A’s and all three pitchers used were in Round Rock at one point this season. LHP Martin Perez got the win in his first major league start with a line of 5.1 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, & 103 Pitches. Yoshinori Tateyama and Michael Kirkman came in to throw the final 3.2 innings of hitless ball to end the game.
- Former Express RHP Jordan Lyles went 2-3 with a 3.72 ERA in 29.0 innings.
- RHP Roy Oswalt made three starts with the Express in preparation for pitching in the majors. The first start was in front of a near capacity crowd of 11,532 fans and was his first time pitching in an Express jersey since his stint with the team in 2000.
Quote of the Month: “A lot of the people that were here when they first opened the stadium are still here today,” Oswalt said. “And getting to see the old faces and the people I still kind of remember the first time was nice.”
Impact Position Player: 1B Mike Bianucci (.277, 4 HR, 12 RBI)
Bianucci continues to mash the ball everywhere the Express play this season. But what has stood out most in the 26-year-old has been his defense. Originally drafted out of Auburn University as a third basemen, he has been moved all over the field in search of a position. At the lower levels Bianucci was playing mostly left and right field, but they were not a natural fit. In Round Rock the Virginia native has settled in nicely at first base. Before the year he had never played the position and was even listed as a designated hitter in the media guide. However, Bianucci has been made a nice transition, and is making noticeable improvement each week. So far he has committed only three errors in 78 games, and been one of the nice surprises for the Express.
Impact Pitcher: LHP Martin Perez (2-1, 3.10 ERA in June)
After a May 25 start against Nashville Martin Perez’s ERA had risen to 5.80 and things were not looking good for the lefthander hurler. To make matters worse, the Rangers decided to call up RHP Justin Grimm from Double-A instead of Perez when injuries hit in Arlington. But rather than getting down on himself Perez worked hard in his bullpen sessions and workouts. In addition, the 21-year-old started throwing more in the bullpen before games. Perez started pitching better and everything culminated in a 90 pitch complete game on June 21 at The Dell Diamond. Six days later the Venezuelan was promoted to the big leagues. And on June 30 Perez made his first major league start and threw 5.1 innings giving up only two runs.
Not In My House: Last month the highlight play was INF Yangervis Solarte’s walk off single on May 21. Exactly one month later OF Joey Butler climbed the wall in right field to rob Cubs prospect 1B Anthony Rizzo of yet another home run. Before being called up to the Cubs on June 25, Rizzo was leading the PCL with 23 homers. The Express would later to go on to win the game behind Perez’s complete game.
The Closer: When the Rangers called up RHP Tanner Scheppers on June 7, a void was left in the back end of the bullpen. Before being called up Scheppers had nine of the Express’s 11 saves on the season. Manager Bobby Jones decided to turn to nine-year major league veteran Aaron Heilman. Since being inserted into the closer’s role Heilman has been dominant going 6-for-6 in save opportunities. The 32-year-old had a 1.50 ERA in June, and will make the manager’s job tougher when Scheppers comes back to Round Rock.
Fairytale Story: Bell has made a long journey this season. He began his year in Class-A Myrtle Beach as a piggyback starter. Then the 23-year-old moved up to Double-A Frisco where he made six appearances as a reliever before being moved to the starting rotation. Finally, he came to Round Rock to take RHP Neil Ramirez’s place in the rotation. Bell made his Triple-A debut on June 26 at Iowa, and was impressive in going 5.2 innings and only giving up one earned run while striking out seven. Since being moved up to Round Rock, Bell is 2-0 with a 0.77 ERA.
(MLB) Texas Rangers: 50-31, 5.0 game lead
(Double-A) Frisco Roughriders: 3-8, 6.5 games back
(Advanced-A) Myrtle Beach Pelicans: 10-3, 1.0 game lead
(A) Hickory Crawdads: 10-3, 2.0 game lead
(Short Season) Spokane Indians: 7-12, 4.0 games back
P Zach Jackson (3-8, 5.09 ERA, 86.2 IP, 26 BB, 45 K, .307)
- CF Julio Borbon (.297, 7 HR, 32 RBI)
- SS Luis Hernandez (.233, 4 HR, 31 RBI)
- LF Ryan Spilborghs (.308, 4 HR, 24 RBI)
- DH Brad Nelson (.287, 11 HR, 47 RBI)
- RF Joey Butler (.285, 11 HR, 40 RBI)
- 1B Mike Bianucci (.283, 14 HR, 47 RBI)
- 3B Matt Kata (.290, 6 HR, 38 RBI)
- 2B Yangervis Solarte (.286, 6 HR, 36 RBI)
- C Luis Martinez (.248, 1 HR, 13 RBI)
My pick today for EPW is OF Julio Borbon. Borbon has not been seeing the ball as well lately (as evidenced by his recent 0 for 29 skid) but he has picked it back up a bit the last few games. I think Borbon gets it in gear tonight, and effects the game in multiple ways. I would predict Julio goes somewhere in the 1 for 4 range, but adds on a stolen base, run scored, and above average play in center field.
I’ve had a tough go of it since we’ve started picking players-to-watch. It’s time to think outside the box. I’m taking LHP Ben Snyder today simply because he’s due to pitch and I can’t bear to watch another E-Train hitter cursed by my picking habits.
There is a great old saying, “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.” Last night OF Joey Butler won the player-to-watch competition and brought me to a record of 3-1. After looking through the lineup card there is no other name I want representing me tonight than Butler. Last night he snapped an 0-for-12 skid and Butler is only hitting .158 in his last six games. But despite the poor numbers recently I have enough faith that PCL All-Star will bring my record to 4-1.
P Brian Baker (1-3, 6.00 ERA, 48 IP, 28 BB, 33 K, .312)
- CF Logan Schafer (.295, 7 HR, 26 RBI)
- DH Jeff Bianchi (.303, 1 HR, 11 RBI)
- C Jason Jaramillo (.279, 2 HR, 9 RBI)
- 3B Andy Gonzalez (.257, 8 HR, 30 RBI)
- RF Jay Gibbons (.224, 5 HR, 8 RBI)
- 1B Sean Halton (.271, 8 HR, 27 RBI)
- LF Corey Patterson (.255, 4 HR, 22 RBI)
- SS Edwin Maysonet (.206, 0 HR, 4 RBI)
- 2B Eric Farris (.267, 0 HR, 14 RBI)
Express Tracks writers Will Weinstock and Andrew Brown talked with OF Joey Butler about making the PCL All-Star Game and his strong first half of the season.
ROUND ROCK, Texas – Round Rock Express outfielder Joey Butler was selected to the 2012 Pacific Coast League All-Star Team, the league office announced Thursday.Butler, a 2011 PCL Postseason All-Star, is the lone Express representative on the 30-member team. The 25th Annual Triple-A All-Star game is July 11 at Coca-Cola Field inBuffalo,N.Y., and pits the PCL All-Stars against the International League All-Stars.
Butler is hitting .285 (78-for-274) with 11 home runs, 40 RBI and a team-leading 57 runs scored through Wednesday night’s game. He is second on the Express squad in home runs and doubles (17), and third in RBI (40) and total bases (128).Butler, who enjoyed a 15-game hitting streak earlier this season, leads the PCL with 49 walks. He is hitting .384 when putting the ball in play.
The PCL All-Star Team consists of 13 elected players who received the most votes from ballots submitted by the league’s field managers and general managers (one-third), media members (one-third) and online fan voting (one-third). The elected players are joined by 17 players selected by the league office. Each of the PCL’s 16 clubs will be represented in Buffalo.
The elected players were catcher Tim Federowicz (Albuquerque/Dodgers); first baseman Mike Hessman (Oklahoma City/Astros); second baseman Jake Elmore (Reno/Diamondbacks); third baseman Ryan Wheeler (Reno); shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria (Las Vegas/Blue Jays); outfielders Adam Eaton (Reno), Wil Myers (Omaha/Royals) and Andrew Brown (Colorado Springs/Rockies); designated hitter Luis Jimenez (Tacoma/Mariners); starting pitchers Graham Godfrey (Sacramento/Athletics) and Eric Hacker (Fresno/Giants); relief pitchers Josh Wall (Albuquerque) and Heath Embree (Fresno).
Selected players included Albuquerque shortstop Luis Cruz, a 2011 Express member. Others selected were catchers Guillermo Quiroz (Tacoma) and Landon Powell (Oklahoma City); infielders Clint Robinson (Omaha), Jimmy Paredes (Oklahoma City) and Josh Vitters (Iowa/Cubs); outfielders Kole Calhoun (Salt Lake/Angels) and Daniel Robertson (Tucson/Padres); pitchers John Ely (Albuquerque), Ryan Verdugo (Omaha), Tom Koehler (New Orleans/Marlins), Jonathan Albaladejo (Reno), Chad Beck (Las Vegas), Tommy Hottovy (Omaha), Jim Henderson (Nashville/Brewers) and Barret Browning (Memphis/Cardinals).
Las Vegas manager Marty Brown will serve as the PCL manager along with coaches Blaise Ilsley (Memphis) and Russ Morman (Fresno).Colorado Springs’ Heath Townsend will serve as the team’s athletic trainer.