Minor League Players of the Month: June

Lone Star Dugout announces Frisco centerfielder Craig Gentry and Frisco pitcher Zach Phillips as its minor league players of the month for June 2009.

Player of the Month: Craig Gentry, OF, Frisco

Craig Gentry has many of the tools necessary to become a solid Major League player. He has excellent speed, great range in the outfield, and an above-average arm. Scouts have often talked about his untapped raw power and potential with the bat.

Last season, playing in 76 games with Double-A Frisco, Gentry batted .276 with just a .333 on-base percentage and a .372 slugging percentage. Because of his speed and defensive abilities, he filled a spot with Triple-A Oklahoma, playing in 18 late-season games and going 12-for-59 at the plate.

Gentry began 2009 back in Frisco, and he got off to a rather slow start, hitting just .200 with three extra-base hits in April.

Ever since, the University of Arkansas product has been on fire. Gentry built on his strong May by batting .364 with five doubles, one triple, and two home runs in June. He walked 11 times in the month, giving him 23 for the season in 74 contests. Gentry totaled for just 26 free passes in all of last season.

Working as Frisco's leadoff hitter, Gentry also has 28 stolen bases in 31 attempts this year. He was just 17-for-25 last season.

If Gentry has legitimately turned a corner—and his two consecutive outstanding months are a good sign of that—he may have a future with the Rangers' big league club.

June 2009 Frisco (AA) .364 110 5 2 13 21 13/16 11 11 .440 .482

Honorable Mention: Julio Borbon (Oklahoma City), Tim Smith (Frisco), Jonathan Greene (Bakersfield), Erik Morrison (Hickory), Alison Perez (DSL Rangers)

Pitcher of the Month: Zach Phillips, LHP, Bakersfield/Frisco

Last month, Yoon-Hee Nam had the incredible numbers, posting a sub-1.00 ERA and giving up very few hits.

In June, it was Zach Phillips, another left-hander.

The 22-year-old California native gave up just six hits in 18 innings in Bakersfield before his promotion to Double-A Frisco. Phillips had spent much of the year as a relief pitcher, but he moved into the starting rotation after the Blaze had a couple of promotions.

Phillips continued his dominance as a starter. In two June starts with Bakersfield, he surrendered zero earned runs on just three hits in 13.1 innings.

The southpaw has pitched in one game since being promoted to Frisco. Phillips worked in long relief on June 26, yielding an unearned run in 4.2 innings. He has been featuring an upper-80s two-seam fastball to go with a good curveball and a very underrated changeup.

Although he didn't quite make the cut over Phillips for this month, DSL Rangers2 lefty Miguel De Los Santos is putting up some of the most unbelievable numbers you'll ever see.

De Los Santos, who struck out 54 batters in 34.2 AZL innings last summer, has been pitching in the Dominican Summer League this year.

Though he has taken a step back—making the numbers a little less impressive—what he's doing is simply unbelievable. The 20-year-old has appeared in 15.2 innings, giving up two hits, walking nine, and striking out 41. In June, he yielded just one hit in 13.2 innings while fanning 35.

De Los Santos has an upper-80s, low-90s fastball and a sharp-breaking curveball. His curve, along with his solid command of the pitch, is almost certainly what has the DSL batters completely hopeless against him.

Year Team W-L IP H BB SO ERA
June 2009 Bakersfield (A+)/Frisco (AA) 1-2 22.2 11 9 20 0.40

Honorable Mention: Neftali Feliz (Oklahoma City), Ryan Tatusko (Bakersfield), Matt Nevarez (Hickory), Miguel De Los Santos (DSL Rangers)

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