Welcome to "Chatter from the Pressbox", the website dedicated to the Pressbox of the Frisco RoughRiders, the Double-A affiliate of the Texas Rangers.

Today's Matchups Around the Ranger's System

Today's (5/20) Match-Ups Around the Ranger's System

Round Rock: Martin Perez (3-3 5.27) vs. Fresno Grizzlies: Andrew Kown (3-1 2.61) @ 1:00 PM CT

Myrtle Beach: Kyle Hendricks (1-4 2.91) @ Wilmington Blue Rocks: Sugar Ray Marimon (3-0 2.65) @ 12:30 PM CT

Hickory : Santo Perez (2-2 6.19) @ Asheville Tourists: Daniel Winkler (4-2 6.06) @ 1:05 PM CT

Monday, May 30, 2011

Game 50: Tulsa Drillers (Christian Friedrich) @ Frisco RoughRiders (Brandon Webb)

Time: 4:00 PM CT
Location: Dr. Pepper Ballpark (Frisco, TX)
Team Records: Frisco RoughRiders (26-23 6 games back in the Texas League South)... Tulsa Drillers (25-23 1 game back in the Texas League North)
Streak: Won 2 in a row
Last 10: 5-5
Series Record: 5-7-1
2011 Record against Tulsa: 2-0
All-Time Record against Tulsa: 60-69
Record since 2004 on May 30th: 4-2 with 1 off day
Starting Pitchers: Brandon Webb (0-0 0.00 ERA) is 0-0 with a 7.00 ERA and 2.33 WHIP in 2 career starts against the Tulsa Drillers... Christian Friedrich (3-3 5.16 ERA) is 0-1 with a 9.64 ERA and 1.93 WHIP in 2 career starts against the Frisco RoughRiders

What to Watch for on the Mound: Frisco sends Brandon Webb to the mound for the first time this season, while Tulsa sends Christian Friedrich to the mound for the 10th time this season in a battle of pitchers who went to colleges in Kentucky... For the first time since Opening Day 2009, Brandon Webb will be making a start in professional baseball. The 2006 National League Cy Young Award Winner and 3 time Major League All-Star, has been sidelined since his last start as he has been recovering from right shoulder surgery in August of 2009. Brandon Webb's MLB resume with the Arizona Diamondbacks was as good as almost any pitcher in baseball. He is 87-62 in his career with a 3.27 ERA and 1.24 WHIP. He won the Cy Young in 2006 after going 16-8 with a 3.10 ERA. Webb won 22 games in 2008 with a 3.30 ERA. He has a career 7.5 K/9 ratio and 2.45 K/BB ratio. He was top 2 in the Cy Young race 3 years in a row from 2006-2008, as he led the league in wins in 2 of those years and ERA+ 2 years as well. The 32 year old right handed starter signed a one year deal with Texas on December 26, 2010. He was drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 8th round of the 2000 draft out of the University of Kentucky... Christian Friedrich has had an up and down 2011 season so far this year. In his last outing, Friedrich had one of the strangest pitching lines you will ever see in baseball. Friedrich lasted 1 2/3 innings against the Midland Rockhounds and gave up 7 hits, 3 walks, and 10 runs in the start with 1 strikeout. The kicker is that only 2 of the 10 runs were earned. Friedrich was not helped by his defense in that start, which committed 4 errors in the game. In the same game, Midland committed 6 errors, however, which obviously was a very sloppy game. Friedrich on the season has given up 53 hits and 15 walks with 34 strikeouts in 45 1/3 innings this season. In 6 starts on the road, Friedrich is 1-2 with a 6.91 ERA. The 23 year old southpaw was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 1st round of the 2008 draft out of Eastern Kentucky University.

Riders Win Fifth Series In May: With a 9-3 win on Sunday, Frisco guaranteed themselves of a 5th series win in the month of May to just 2 series losses. They moved to 26-23 and gained a game on San Antonio, who lost 5-1 to the Springfield Cardinals. They are also now 18-9 in the month of May, with a chance to tie the franchise high for wins in the month of May (19).

Robbie Erlin Solid in Debut: Robbie Erlin made his AA debut on Sunday for Frisco and while his line wasn't "great", he looked good on the mound. He threw low 90s on his fastball and displayed a good changeup. Robbie Erlin continued his usual season so far by allowing 2 solo homeruns in the start and finished with a line of: 6 IP 6 H 3 R/ER 1 BB 3 K. Erlin threw a lot of strikes, however, which is promising as he had 71 strikes out of 90 pitches thrown in the start. Erlin also threw 1st pitch strikes to 19 of the 25 batters he faced and went to 2 strike counts on 14 of the 25 batters he faced. His issue on Sunday was putting guys away, which he struggled with. At one point in the 2nd inning 10 of 12 pitches were fouled away. Erlin settled down eventually and finished with a solid line. And more importantly, the 20 year old southpaw still has a comfortable margin in his WHIP lead among minor league pitchers.

Greene Heating Back Up?: After hitting just 2 extra base hits in his previous 14 games before Thursday's game, Jonathan Greene has now hit 4 extra base hits in his last 3 games played. Greene went 2 for 3 with 2 doubles on Sunday, drove in 2 runs and walked as well. He now has 3 multi hit games in as many games and is batting .274 with a .782 OPS in the month of May.

Making Things Happen: Leonys Martin went 0 for 2 at the plate on Sunday, but walked twice and hit a sacrifice fly as well. He has walked 8 times over his last 10 games and 10 times total in 16 games for Frisco. He has reached base in 15 of the 16 games and has driven in a run or scored a run in 12 of the 16 games. Over the last 4 games, Martin is 6 for 12 with 4 walks, 1 RBI, and 7 runs scored. He is batting .381 (8 for 21) when behind in the count.

Mendonca Goes Yard, Strikes out: Tommy Mendonca went 1 for 3 on Sunday with a hit by pitch and his 11th homerun of the season. It was his first homerun since May 16th and his 5th in the month of May. Mendonca also struck out for the 34th time in the month of May and has struck out in 10 consecutive games and 12 out of his last 13. At the risk of sounding like Captain Obvious, Mendonca is batting .424/.457/.909/1.366 when he doesn't strikeout this season (9 games) and is batting .265/.310/.456/.766 when he does strikeout (36 games).

Last Year on This Date: Frisco lost 9-2 to the Tulsa Drillers at home. Martin Perez started for Frisco and took the loss after he gave up 8 hits, 2 walks, and 5 runs (4 earned) over 4 innings with 2 strikeouts. Brennan Garr, Ben Snyder, and Evan Reed gave up 4 runs over the final 5 innings of relief. Emerson Frostad went 2 for 4 with a homerun at the plate. Joey Butler went 2 for 4 with a double as well. Marcus Lemon, Elio Sarmiento, and Jacob Kaase each added a hit in the game.

Answer to Yesterday's Question of the Day: Carlos Delgado hit 4 homeruns in a game on September 25, 2003 for the Toronto Blue Jays against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

Around the Ranger's System

Yesterday's Record: 4-0

Round Rock (AAA) scored 2 runs in the 9th inning to defeat the Iowa Cubs 9-8. Brett Tomko started for Round Rock and gave up 7 hits, 1 walk, and 5 runs (3 earned) over 2 innings with 2 strikeouts. Beau Jones pitched 4 innings of relief and gave up 4 hits, 1 walk, and 2 runs (1 earned) with 3 strikeouts. Pedro Strop got the win after pitching 1 scoreless inning of relief in the 9th inning. Chris Davis went 4 for 5 and hit a homerun for the 3rd straight game and now has a homerun in 5 of the 6 games he has played in for Round Rock since being sent down to there. He also walked in the game. Taylor Teagarden went 2 for 4 with a homerun, a double, and a walk. Joey Butler went 1 for 4 with a walk and a stolen base. Esteban German went 3 for 6 with a homerun as well.

Myrtle Beach (High-A) scored 9 runs in the 2nd and 3rd innings and won 9-3 in Justin Grimm's debut for Myrtle Beach over the Wilmington Blue Rocks. Grimm gave up just 3 hits, 1 walk, and 1 run over 6 innings with 6 strikeouts in his high-A debut. He was promoted when Erlin was promoted to Frisco. Kennil Gomez gave up 2 hits, 1 walk, and 2 unearned runs in 2 innings of relief with 1 strikeout. Trevor Hurley pitched a scoreless inning of relief as well. Mike Olt went 1 for 2 with 2 walks in the game. Santiago Chirino led the Pelicans with a 3 for 4 day including a homerun and 4 RBI. Ryan Strausborger went 1 for 3 with a walk. Zach Zaneski went 1 for 3 with a RBI and a walk. Mitch Hilligoss and Leury Garcia each went 1 for 4 with 2 RBI a piece. Jared Hoying had 2 hits in the game as well.

Hickory (Low-A) scored a run in the 8th inning and defeated the West Virginia Power 4-3. Roman Mendez started for Hickory and gave up 6 hits, 1 walk, and 3 runs (all earned) over 6 innings with 6 strikeouts. Jorge Reyes picked up the win after giving up 3 hits over 2 shutout innings with 3 strikeouts and 0 walks. Ryan Rodebaugh pitched the 9th for his 5th save of the year. Jurickson Profar went a rare 0 for 5 in the game for Hickory. Alejandro Selen went 2 for 3 with a solo homerun for the Crawdads. Kellin Deglan also had 2 hits in 4 at bats with a double and 2 RBI. Odubel Herrera went 1 for 4 with a double at the plate. Christian Villanueva and Jake Skole each added a hit as well. Hickory went up against last year's #2 overall pick Jameson Taillon who gave up 2 hits, 0 walks, and 1 run over 5 innings with 4 strikeouts against the Crawdads. Taillon now has a 3.10 ERA and 24 strikeouts to 4 walks over 29 innings with 28 hits given up this season in the South Atlantic League.

Minor League Performance of the Day

We've talked about it quite a bit here, but pitching in the California League is never an easy task, especially when you're a pitcher that can struggle with command at times. However, on Sunday the San Jose Giant's Zack Wheeler continued his very nice season by making it look very easy. Wheeler gave up just 3 hits and 1 walk over 7 shutout innings with a season high 12 strikeouts against the Stockton Ports in San Jose's 2-0 win. Wheeler faced the Oakland Athletic's 2010 1st round pick and Fort Worth, TX native Michael Choice and got Choice to strikeout twice swinging before Wheeler also hit him. On the season, Zack Wheeler is 4-2 with a 3.70 ERA and has given up 36 hits and 25 walks in 48 2/3 innings with 62 strikeouts. The 21 year old right handed pitcher was taken 6th overall by the San Francisco Giants in the 2009 draft. He was rated by Baseball America as the #2 prospect in San Francisco's system entering 2011 and was rated by Baseball America as the #55 best prospect in baseball entering 2011.

As always...

Station to Listen to the Game on: 1630 AM (KKGM)
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And Check Out the Riders Insider Blog for more Frisco RoughRiders info: http://ridersinsider.mlblogs.com/

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