Rangers Minor League Roundup – 4/23

Cody Buckel turned in another excellent start at High-A Myrtle Beach on Monday, as he surrendered just one hit in 6.1 innings. Lone Star Dugout takes a look at all of the day's minor league action in the Texas Rangers' system.

AAA: Round Rock 8 – (@) New Orleans 1
W - Reynolds (1-2)
HR - Butler (4), Solarte (2), Nelson (1)
8-11, 4.5 GB

The Express put on another power display on Monday, as the club pounded out six extra-base hits, including three home runs.

Starting pitcher Greg Reynolds (3.00 ERA/.240 BAA) also turned in his best outing of the year. The 6-foot-7 righty surrendered one run in a season-high eight innings pitched, giving up six hits while striking out two. He threw 93 pitches and didn't issue a walk.

Although Reynolds has only eight strikeouts (with three walks) in 27 innings thus far, he has allowed two earned runs or fewer in three of his four starts. He has also worked at least six innings in each of his four outings.

The eight-inning start was Reynolds' longest since August 22, 2010, when he did so against the Frisco RoughRiders.

Right fielder Joey Butler (.304/.407/.580) extended his hitting streak to 13 games by going 2-for-4 with a solo home run and a walk. Yangervis Solarte (.284/.342/.478) went deep for his only hit in five trips. Butler and Solarte both hit home runs for the second consecutive day.

Scuffling DH Brad Nelson went 2-for-5 with his first round-tripper of the season.

Nine-hole hitting second baseman Greg Miclat (2/4, 2 2B) doubled twice while centerfielder Leonys Martin was 2-for-5 with his sixth two-bagger.

Matt Kata (2/5) and Luis Martinez (2/3, BB) had two singles apiece.

First baseman Mike Bianucci was the only Express starter without a hit on Monday, as he was 0-for-3. But Bianucci drew two walks––he entered the game with just one free pass in his first 16 contests.

Ben Snyder (1.93 ERA/.245 BAA) closed out the game with a scoreless ninth inning, working around a pair of walks and striking out two.

Sergio Pedroza's solo homer off Reynolds in the bottom of the eighth inning snapped a 16.2-inning scoreless streak for Round Rock pitchers.

Player of the Game: RHP Greg Reynolds
8.0 6 1 1 0 2 1 3.00

AA: Frisco 2 – San Antonio 1
W - Pimentel (2-0)
SV - Yan (5)
10-7, 1.0 GU

Carlos Pimentel (0.00 ERA/.100 BAA) has not only been effective lately, but he's also been efficient with his pitches––something he rarely was last season.

The 22-year-old righty got the starting nod in place of the injured Miguel de los Santos on Monday, and he hurled five innings of two-hit, shutout ball, striking out four. He didn't walk a batter.

Pimentel, who threw 63 pitches (45 strikes) in the five innings, has yet to surrender a run in 15 frames this season. After running into trouble in the first inning, he settled down to retire 14 of the final 15 hitters he faced.

Frisco scored single runs in the third and fourth innings, but that was enough to earn the victory.

Speedy second baseman Leury Garcia (.316/.339/.456) tripled and walked in three plate appearances. Engel Beltre (1/4, 2B) and Jurickson Profar (1/4, 2B) both doubled. Beltre now has an extra-base hit in each of his last four contests.

Mike Olt walked twice and struck out twice in his four plate appearances. DH Brad Hawpe was also 0-for-2 with two free passes.

Chris McGuiness (1/3) singled and Jose Felix (0/2, SF) hit a sacrifice fly to drive in the team's two runs.

Sidearm right-hander Trevor Hurley followed Pimentel with two hitless, scoreless innings out of the bullpen. Diminutive lefty Joe Ortiz worked a blank eighth on six pitches to preserve the shutout.

Although Johan Yan surrendered a solo home run to Missions cleanup hitter Nate Freiman in the ninth inning, he recorded his fifth save of the year. Yan also struck out one while throwing 16 pitches in the frame.

Frisco's four hurlers threw only 107 pitches in the game, which lasted two hours and 20 minutes. The club was going up against Padres prospect Keyvius Sampson, who allowed two runs on three hits in six innings.

Player of the Game: RHP Carlos Pimentel
5.0 2 0 0 0 4 0 0.00

A+: Myrtle Beach 7 – Frederick 1
W - Buckel (2-0)
HR - Villanueva (1)
9-7, 1.0 GU

Cody Buckel (0.84 ERA/.103 BAA) continued his early-season mastery of the Carolina League on Monday, working 6.1 innings and allowing one run on a lone hit. He struck out eight and walked two.

Buckel and the Pelicans limited Frederick to two hits for the game. He took a no-hitter through four innings before surrendering a leadoff triple in the fifth.

The 19-year-old hasn't permitted more than two hits in any of his four starts this season. In 21.1 innings, he has allowed seven hits while walking eight and fanning 29.

Third baseman Christian Villanueva (.255/.345/.412) provided the offense by going 2-for-5 with a three-run homer––his first of the season. The 20-year-old, who is playing in a more pitcher-friendly environment this season, socked 30 doubles and 17 homers with Single-A Hickory last year.

First baseman Brett Nicholas (2/4) singled twice while Teodoro Martinez (1/3, BB) singled and walked.

?Catcher Tomas Telis went 1-for-3 and was also plunked twice, raising his on-base percentage to .355 in 15 games.

Josh Richmond (1/2, 2B) hit his first double of the year. Richmond entered the game during the top of the fifth inning after an apparent Jared Hoying injury.

Lefty reliever Chad Bell induced a double-play ball to the only hitter he faced, getting out of the seventh inning. Ben Henry finished it off with two scoreless frames. He allowed a single and a walk while striking out one.

Player of the Game: RHP Cody Buckel
6.1 1 1 1 2 8 0 0.84

A: Hickory – OFF
12-5, 0.0 GU

The Crawdads enjoyed a scheduled day off on Monday. The first-place club will return to action for a four-game series against Greensboro, beginning at 6:00 p.m. Eastern.

With Hickory's victory over Savannah on Sunday, skipper Bill Richardson became the franchise's all-time winningest manager with 166 victories. Richardson began his professional coaching career by managing the rookie-level Surprise Rangers, and he has worked as Hickory's skipper for the past three seasons.

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