Lone Star Dugout's Prospect Hot List

Clinton outfielder K.C. Herren sits atop Lone Star Dugout's first prospect hot list of the 2007 season. In this bi-weekly feature, Lone Star Dugout takes a look at who's hot and who's not in the Rangers organization.

Who's hot?

1) K.C. Herren (OF, Clinton) – A second round pick in the 2004 draft, the 21-year-old left fielder did little to justify his lofty selection in his first two pro seasons. That has changed recently, as Herren is hitting .538 with one home run and 11 RBI in his last ten games.

2) Zach Phillips (LHP, Clinton) – Phillips has been nothing short of dominant for Class-A Clinton. Even though he is on a strict pitch count, Phillips has stuck out 17 and allowed no runs in his last two starts, spanning nine innings.

Phillips' excellent curveball has him among the league leaders in strikeouts

3) Doug Mathis (RHP, Frisco) – Mathis started off the season by pitching poorly in Triple-A, but the right-hander from Missouri has been great since his demotion to Frisco. In his last 20 innings, Mathis has allowed only two runs while striking out 14.

4) John Whittleman (3B, Clinton) – Whittleman was the Rangers' minor league player of the month for April, and so far May has been just as good. In his last ten games, Whittleman is hitting .405. He is also continuing to show good power, as he has three homers and eight RBI.

5) Eric Hurley (RHP, Frisco) – The Rangers' top pitching prospect is shining in Double-A this season. Hurley has used a mid 90s fastball, plus slider and an improving changeup to allow only two runs and strike out 12 over his last 20 innings.

6) Kevin Mahar (OF, Oklahoma) – When Mahar was promoted to Oklahoma this past week, he wasn't dominating Double-A ball. That hasn't been the case so far in Triple-A, as he is hitting .414 with a homer and four RBI in his first week.

7) Chad Tracy (OF/C, Clinton) – Tracy was drafted as a catcher out of Pepperdine in 2006, and while he played mainly outfield so far in 2007, that hasn't stopped him from hitting. In his last ten games, the son of Pirates manager Jim Tracy is hitting .381 with two home runs and 15 RBI.

Chad Tracy has swung a hot bat over the past two weeks.

8) German Duran (2B, Frisco) – Duran may be the shortest player on the Frisco roster, but that hasn't stopped the Fort Worth native being among the Texas League leaders in home runs. Duran has seven this season, and is hitting .387 with three homers and six RBI in his last ten games.

9) Jason Botts (OF, Oklahoma) – Botts has always had massive home run power, but he hadn't showed it this year until recently. The left fielder is hitting only .242 for Oklahoma, but he has been hot in his last ten games. Over that stretch, he is hitting .317 with two long balls and seven RBI.

10) Anthony Webster (OF, Frisco) – The Rangers don't have a lot of outstanding athletes in the minor leagues, but Webster is one of the best. The speedy corner outfielder has recovered from an early season back injury to hit .308 with two homers and seven RBI over his last ten games.

Who's not?

1) Francisco Cruceta (RHP, Oklahoma) – Cruceta has really struggled in his first year in the Rangers organization. In his last seven innings, the hard-throwing right-hander has walked seven batters and allowed six runs. If that wasn't bad enough, he was suspended 50 games this past week for failing a drug test for performance enhancing drugs.

2) Scott Feldman (RHP, Oklahoma) – Feldman started the year in the major leagues by allowing just one run in 6 1/3 innings, but not much has gone right since then. The sidearming righty posted a 6.08 ERA with the Rangers before being demoted to Triple-A, where things have gone even worse. In two innings with Oklahoma, Feldman has allowed seven runs for an ERA of 31.50.

3) Kevin Richardson (C, Frisco) - Richardson is in the middle of slump for the RoughRiders, as he is hitting only .143 over his last ten games. However, he showed signs of breaking out of the slump Friday against Corpus Christi when he went 2-3 with four RBI.

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