Yesterday the public got their first good Summer Camp look at some Ranger prospects when they broadcast play on TexasRangers.com. It wasn’t just a batting practice (though Choo did hit the plate three half innings in a row) and it wasn’t quite a scrimmage (again, see Choo’s batting, among others) but what it was was a great way to see how some of our favorite young players are progressing.
Adolis Garcia played for the Memphis Redbirds last season so there’s a bit of discussion whether he’ll be added to the back-up squad the team will keep practicing at the old field, just in case they need to replace a major leaguer. Garcia looked sharp at bat and hit a homerun- his second of the summer- which carried into the lower deck of left field.
Andy Ibanez was with the NashvilleSoundslast season. He still has a bit until he makes it to the Show but his at bats were mostly quality. He did swing himself into the ground but ended up with a walk, and then doubled later in play.
They had Nick Ciuffo in to catch for a lot of the play. He was also with the Sounds. He seemed to have a bit of trouble framing up. Against Minor he struck out. Even with Chirinos out injured I don’t see him making the squad when they have other currently more capable catchers. They also have Sam Huff on his way up, so Ciuffo has a bit of heat at his back.
Leody Taveras reached base 3x, stole second and had a fantastic sliding catch on a ball to right field hit by Gallo. He was a definite bright spot for the RoughRiders last season and he’s catching fire at Camp.
Taveras’ RoughRiders teammate who was getting some pitching in was Taylor Hearn. His change-up is looking killer.
While Hearn was on the mound he faced Sherten Apostel. It was the biggest plate match up of the “game”. I lost count of how many foul balls were hit. He did eventually strike out on a slider.
Sam Huff was in but did not catch- they left that to Ciuffo, Trevino and Federowicz. Huff played some first base, where he actually didn’t look too bad. Of course that’s a long shot he’d ever play there.
Josh Jung played very briefly. He’s currently 4-12 in Summer Camp, with a double last night.
We didn’t get much of a look at Demarcus Evans. I am calling it here, though- I expect to see him pitch in the Majors this season.
It was a weird set-up but it was satisfying to see so many young guys suit up and play. With official games starting next week there’s not much time left for the guys to fight for their MLB or reserve team spots.