Lone Star Dugout Prospect Hot List (8/21-9/3)

Right-handed pitcher Edinson Volquez tops our ninth -- and final -- version of the Lone Star Dugout Prospect Hot List. 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) Edinson Volquez (RHP, Oklahoma) - Volquez recently made his 2007 debut in the big leagues, but he made two recent starts in the minors as well. The hard-throwing righty kept his opponent off the board in both starts, spanning 13 innings. Over that time, Volquez surrendered six hits, walked five, and struck out 16. His start in the majors wasn't bad either, as he defeated the division-leading Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

2) Doug Mathis (RHP, Frisco) – Although Mathis made only two starts from August 21 to September 3, he was easily one of the best in the organization. The 24-year-old right-hander won both starts, surrendering one run on seven hits in 14 2/3 innings. He walked one and struck out 15 over that period. In Mathis' first start, he tossed a complete game, four-hit shutout with 10 punchouts.

3) Nate Gold (1B, Oklahoma) - Gold checks in at third place for the second hot list in a row. In the first baseman's last 13 games, he hit .347 with four home runs and 14 runs batted in. The 27-year-old finished his Triple-A campaign with 26 home runs and 103 RBI in only 122 games.

4) Cristian Santana (C, Arizona/Spokane) - Santana's hot-hitting earned him a promotion to short-season Spokane in the middle of last week. Between both Arizona and Spokane, Santana has hit .391 with four doubles, one triple, and one home run in his last 12 games. In his seven games with the Indians, the young backstop is hitting .320 with one home run and four runs batted in.

5) Derek Holland (LHP, Spokane) - The surprise of the Spokane pitching staff this season, Holland has been the club's most consistent performer. That has remained true over his last three starts, as Holland surrendered just four earned runs in 17 innings. He walked two and struck out 22.

6) Victor Diaz (OF, Oklahoma) - Diaz's .278 batting average over his last 13 games is rather pedestrian, but he was fueled by one monster performance. In a recent game against the Albuquerque Isotopes, the slugging outfielder was 5-for-6 with three home runs and eight runs batted in. Diaz had five total home runs over the two week span.

7) Brandon Boggs (OF, Frisco) - Boggs finally broke out of a lengthy slump and heated up towards the end of Frisco's regular season. The slick-fielding centerfielder hit .308 with two doubles, one triple, and four home runs over his last 15 ballgames. Boggs also drew nine free passes during that time.

Kiker has been solid all season.
8) Kasey Kiker (LHP, Clinton) - While Clinton has struggled in the second half, 2006 first round pick Kasey Kiker has remained a bright spot. Although the southpaw has issued nine walks over his last three starts – 14.2 IP – he surrendered just two earned runs. Kiker gave up eight hits and struck out 15, leading to an earned run average of 1.23.

9) Chris Davis (3B, Frisco) - Davis has seen his Double-A batting average return back to earth lately, but his power has yet to do so. The third baseman hit just .255 (12-for-47) over his last 13 games, but he managed to sock four home runs over that time period. It was good enough for an OPS of .888.

10) Andy Walker (RHP, Bakersfield) - Few pitchers were as streaky as Ace Walker was in 2007. The right-hander snuck onto the hot list one last time with three more outstanding starts. Walker went 3-0 with a 2.37 ERA. He walked only two batters and struck out 18 in 19 frames.

Who's not?

1) Matt West (IF, Arizona) - After beginning his professional career with a solid .301/.397/.388 line with the rookie league AZL Rangers, infielder Matt West was suspended 50 games for testing positive for performance enhancing supplements. West was a second round pick of the Rangers in 2007.

2) Clinton outfield - While Clinton corner outfielders Chad Tracy and K.C. Herren were outstanding in the first half, they have stumbled since the Midwest League All-Star break. The duo has hit .217/.295/.348 and .225/.341/.320 in the second half, respectively.

3) Ezequiel Astacio (RHP, Oklahoma) – Astacio was one of the best pitchers on the RedHawks staff before getting hurt in May. Since returning from the disabled list in lat July, things have not gone quite so well for the reliever. Even with a solid performance on Saturday, Astacio has a 12.96 ERA (12 ER in 8.1 IP) over his last six appearances.

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