Rangers Winterball Roundup – 11/9

Leonys Martin had a solid day in the Arizona Fall League on Wednesday while outfielder Joey Butler made his debut in Venezuela. Lone Star Dugout takes a look at all of the day's winterball action in the Texas Rangers' system.

Arizona Fall League: Surprise 10 – (@) Peoria 7 (10 innings)
21-8, 8.0 GU

The Saguaros clinched a spot in the Arizona Fall League Championship Game with Wednesday's 10-4 victory over Peoria. Surprise clinched the division title with seven games remaining in the season.

Centerfielder Leonys Martin had a strong all-around afternoon, going 2-for-5 with a triple, two RBI, a stolen base, and an outfield assist by erasing a runner at third base.

The 23-year-old Martin is part of Surprise's taxi squad, meaning he is only eligible to play on Wednesdays and Saturdays. In six games, he is 5-for-25 (.200) with a double, a triple, a home run, three walks, and four strikeouts. He also has three steals in as many attempts.

Ryan Strausborger (.345/.367/.569) entered as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning and had a single and a double in his two plate appearances. The speedy Indiana State product has eight extra-base hits in 58 official at-bats.

DH Elio Sarmiento had a single and an RBI in five at-bats.

Reliever Johan Yan (4.22 ERA/.250 BAA) earned his second victory in nine AFL appearances with 1.2 scoreless innings, working around a hit and a walk. He also got a strikeout while throwing 13 of his 24 pitches for strikes.

According to pitch f/x, Yan featured an 88-89 mph sinking fastball. He also mixed in a handful of 75-77 mph sliders and 80-81 mph changeups. The lone strikeout came swinging on an 81 mph change, which was a relatively little-used pitch during the regular season this year.

Venezuelan Winter League

Left-hander Joe Ortiz suffered the loss despite throwing only six pitches. The 21-year-old gave up singles to both hitters he faced, and both came around to score. After getting out to an excellent start, Ortiz has yielded four earned runs in one-plus innings in his last two games.

Tanner Scheppers turned in perhaps his best outing of the winterball season, hurling 1.2 scoreless innings. The fireballing righty gave up one hit and struck out a pair. He didn't walk a batter.

Dominican Winter League

After picking things up with a three-hit performance on Tuesday, Licey centerfielder Engel Beltre moved into the leadoff spot of the Tigres' lineup on Wednesday. The 22-year-old prospect responded by going 2-for-4 with a solo home run, which he pulled over the right field fence.

Beltre is now 9-for-31 (.290) with two doubles and a homer in 14 games.

Escogido left fielder Julio Borbon was 0-for-1 with a walk before being lifted for a pinch hitter in the sixth inning.

Leones righty Carlos Pimentel lowered his ERA to 0.69 after he yielded one unearned run in two innings of relief. Pimentel gave up two hits and walked once without recording a strikeout.

The 21-year-old has now allowed one earned run on three hits in 13 winterball innings thus far.

Mexican Pacific League

No Rangers appeared in Wednesday's games.

Puerto Rican Winter League

No Rangers appeared in Wednesday's games.

Liga Paralela (Venezuela Minor League)

Outfielder Joey Butler, who signed to play for Magallanes this winter, got in a tune-up game with the Navegantes club in Liga Paralela on Wednesday. Butler played right field, batted third, and went 0-for-1 with a strikeout, two walks, and a hit-by pitch.

Butler will likely play in a handful of Liga Paralela games before joining the big club. He is coming off a career campaign with Triple-A Round Rock, hitting .322/.388/.493 in 113 contests.

Butler's game was started by right-hander Ronald ‘Bear' Bay, who pitched for High-A Bakersfield in '07. Bay, now 28, spent this past regular season with Triple-A Salt Lake City in the Angels' organization.

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