Minor League Players of the Month: May

Lone Star Dugout announces Bakersfield catcher Taylor Teagarden and Clinton hurler Omar Poveda as its players of the month for May 2007.

Player of the Month: Taylor Teagarden, C, Bakersfield

The offensive production from University of Texas product Taylor Teagarden has been one of the most encouraging storylines in the Rangers' minor league system this season.

After getting off to a hot start at the end of April, Teagarden breezed through the month of May. The Dallas native hit .338 with eight home runs and 18 walks in just 21 games. The 23-year-old missed nearly the entire 2006 season because he was rehabbing from Tommy John surgery. Teagarden, who was a designated hitter for most of May, has dealt with some elbow soreness this season.

May 2007 Bakersfield (A+) .338 77 5 8 18 20 1 19 19 .485 .714

Honorable Mention: Marlon Byrd, OF (Oklahoma), German Duran, 2B (Frisco), John Whittleman, 3B; K.C. Herren, OF (Clinton)

Outfielder Marlon Byrd, 29, earned a promotion to the majors after he hit .390 with 10 doubles and six home runs in 23 May games. Frisco second baseman German Duran also slugged at an outstanding rate, as he mashed seven home runs during the month. The Single-A Clinton duo of John Whittleman and K.C. Herren continued to terrorize Midwest League pitching to the tune of .343/.437/.657 and .358/.410/.623, respectively.

Pitcher of the Month: Omar Poveda, RHP, Clinton

Nineteen-year-old pitcher Omar Poveda turned in possibly his best month as a pro this May.

In five May starts, the 6-foot-4 hurler posted a 3-1 record with a 1.99 earned run average. He limited opposing hitters to a .209 average while walking just nine batters and recording 30 strikeouts in 31.2 innings.

Poveda, who allowed five home runs in April, did not surrender a gopher ball in May. His best start of the month came on May 27, when he allowed just two hits and fanned eight over seven scoreless innings.

Year Team W-L IP H BB SO ERA
May 2007 Clinton (A) 3-1 31.2 23 9 30 1.99

Honorable Mention: John Rheinecker, LHP (Oklahoma), Doug Mathis, RHP (Frisco), Ryan Knippschild, LHP (Bakersfield), Zach Phillips, LHP (Clinton)

Though the RedHawks pitching staff struggled for most of the month, lefty John Rheinecker came on late to toss 11 scoreless innings in his first two starts of the season. Arizona native Doug Mathis outperformed top prospect Eric Hurley in May, going 4-2 with a 2.58 ERA. Left-handed reliever Ryan Knippschild was outstanding out of the bullpen for the Bakersfield Blaze. Knippschild gave up just three runs on eight hits in 16.1 innings in May. Zach Phillips, 20, was nearly as good as Poveda, going 3-1 with a 2.18 ERA in six starts this past month.

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