Rangers Winterball Roundup – 10/13

Surprise Saguaros first baseman Chris McGuiness continued his impressive start to the Arizona Fall League campaign on Saturday, as he launched a double and a three-run homer. Lone Star Dugout takes a look at all of the day's winterball action in the Texas Rangers' system.

Arizona Fall League: Surprise 10 – Salt River 2
2-3, 1.0 GB

With a pair of Rangers prospects in the lineup on Saturday afternoon, the Saguaros pounded out 10 runs on 20 hits in a blowout victory over Salt River.

Cleanup-hitting first baseman Chris McGuiness flashed some power by going 3-for-5 with a double and a three-run homer. Through four Arizona Fall League games, the 24-year-old McGuiness has two hitless contests and two monster efforts. Overall, he's off to a 7-for-18 (.389) start with two doubles and two round-trippers.

Shortstop Luis Sardinas, the youngest player in the AFL this season, added three singles in five at-bats. He also stole a base.

The Saguaros had 26 official at-bats with a man in scoring position during Saturday's contest.

On the mound, lefty reliever Jimmy Reyes made his second AFL appearance and yielded one run in two innings. Throwing 20 of his 27 pitches for a strike, Reyes gave up two hits and fanned one without issuing a walk.

According to the Surprise Stadium pitch f/x system, Reyes threw his fastball between 88-92 mph while also mixing in a handful of breaking balls and changeups. His lone strikeout came looking on a 92 mph heater.

Reyes, 23, posted a 2.44 earned-run average in 41 relief appearances for High-A Myrtle Beach this season. In 66.1 innings, he yielded 61 hits while walking 16 and striking out 71. His fastball, which has a little life to it, helped him induce more than 1.6 groundouts per airout.

Although Reyes is a left-handed reliever, he was slightly more successful against righties (.237/.291/.371) than fellow southpaws (.274/.308/.371) this past regular season.

Venezuelan Winter League

After pitching with La Guaira in the Liga Paralela (minor league) last winter, reliever Arlett Mavare made his first appearance with the big club on Saturday. The 22-year-old righty allowed two runs in one inning, giving up two hits and walking two.

Mavare, who is listed at 6-foot-0, 175 pounds, features an 88-91 mph fastball––touching 92 on occasion–-with a mature breaking ball and changeup. Although he doesn't overpower hitters with pure velocity, his advanced repertoire and ability to locate led to a 3.57 ERA with 102 strikeouts in 80.2 innings at Single-A Hickory this past season.

Liga Paralela (Venezuela Minor League)

Tiburones first baseman Jhonny Gomez, batting third on Saturday, had a solo home run and a walk in four plate appearances. Through his first three games, the 22-year-old Venezuela native is 5-for-10 with a double and two homers.

Gomez split his 2012 campaign between Single-A Hickory and High-A Myrtle Beach, hitting .223/.331/.305 with only four home runs in 73 games.

Right-handed pitcher Richard Alvarez made seven relief appearances with the Caracas Liga Paralela club last season. But as he's coming off his best state-side season in pro ball, he appears to be taking on a bigger role with his winterball club.

On Saturday, Alvarez got the start for Caracas and earned the victory. The 20-year-old hurler tossed five innings of one-run ball, scattering five hits and striking out four without issuing a walk.

Rangers farmhands Edwin Garcia and Tomas Telis got the starting nod for Caracas in the field. Garcia, batting leadoff, played shortstop and went 2-for-4 with a walk and two stolen bases. Telis had one single in five at-bats. He drove home two runs.

While Telis saw action behind the plate in his first two winterball games, he played at first base on Saturday. In five state-side seasons, Telis has played all 384 of his professional games at either catcher or designated hitter.

Mexican Pacific League

Catcher Jose Felix appeared as a late-inning defensive replacement for the Algodoneros de Guasave in their season-opening victory on Saturday. Felix entered in the bottom of the seventh inning and flew out to right field in his only plate appearance.

A 24-year-old native of Guasave, Felix played in 82 games at Double-A Frisco this season and posted a .260/.271/.377 slash line. While he has been considered an excellent defender in the past, he struggled behind the plate at times in 2012.

World Baseball Classic Qualifiers

Qualification for the 2013 World Baseball Classic began on September 19, when two of the four qualifying round groups were played. Spain and Canada each won their respective group and earned a spot in next year's Classic.

The Spanish and Canadian squads each feature one Rangers prospect. For Spain, it's outfielder Engel Beltre, who was actually born in the Dominican Republic and lived in the United States for a period while growing up. Regardless, Beltre is eligible to play for the Spanish side. Playing as the club's leadoff hitter and centerfielder, the 22-year-old prospect went 6-for-16 (.375) with a triple in four games. He also drew four walks, was hit by a pitch, and stole three bases.

Rangers catching prospect Kellin Deglan is the youngest player on Team Canada's squad by two and a half years. Working as the club's backup catcher, Deglan appeared in one game as a defensive replacement but didn't get a plate appearance.

Left-handed pitcher Richard Bleier made two appearances for Israel, who finished as runners-up to Spain in Qualifier 1. Bleier tossed one hitless, scoreless inning between the two games, working around a pair of walks.

In other international baseball news involving Rangers prospects, infielder Nick Urbanus recently competed in the 2012 European Baseball Championship. Although Urbanus played well, his Dutch side fell to Italy in the title game. But over nine games, Urbanus was 11-for-28 (.393) at the plate with a double, two triples, three walks, and eight runs batted in. He saw time at second base, shortstop, and third base during the tournament.

Dominican Winter League

Begins October 14.

Puerto Rican Winter League

Begins November 8.

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