I went down to Frisco this weekend. Eric Hurley started Sunday's game so I got to see him pitch for the first time this year. He looked good at the beginning of the game, but was left in too long (in my opinion at least). In the first 4 innings he gave up 1 run on 4 hits and 2 walks. In the 5th inning, the bottom dropped out. There were 3 errors in the inning which did not help, but neither did the 6 hits, including 3 doubles. It was definitely a tough luck situation, but Eric just couldn't stop the bleeding...it started to look like batting practice out there. I usually support managers letting a player try to work himself out of trouble, and I know Eric's development is more important than winning the game, but I still think he was left in to face 4-5 batters too many. Of course, having said that, Eric is a good kid who is talented and I fully expect he will bounce back in his next outing.
I now understand the rave reviews about Kevin Richardson. The boy has a cannon of an arm and gunned down 3 runners on Sunday. He also had a big play on an attempted steal at the plate. With runners at 1B and 3B Kevin threw the ball to 2B on an attempted steal. The runner was called safe and the runner at 3B then tried to steal home. German Duran gunned the ball back to Kevin who withstood a charge and held on to the ball as he fell to the ground for an out. I think he got the call there because he held on and not because the runner was out (he looked safe from my vantage point), but an out is an out! Kevin also had a big afternoon offensively going 3-5 with 3 RBIs and a HR. He and Emerson Frostad had back-to-back HRs in the 6th.
Birthday boy Steve Murphy had an off-day for him, going 1-5 with 2 SOs. He has had no problems adjusting to AA to date.
I'm not sure why Ken Chenard started the 2nd game of the double header in place of scheduled starter Kea Kometani. Per the Riders website, Kea is scheduled to pitch Tuesday in San Antonio so it's unlikely that he was injured, and he was at the game (he was charting behind home plate) so I don't think he was sick.
As I mentioned yesterday, the Rangers called up Willie (don't call me Scott) Eyre and DFA'd Bruce Chen. Chen has previously indicated that he would accept an assignment to OKC if he clears waivers. Willie's stay in Texas may be short-lived however. If Gagne is hurt enough to sideline him for a day or two (but not enough to go on the DL) I wouldn't be surprised to see Willie (who I believe has an option left) optioned down to OKC and either Frankie Francisco or Wes Littleton called up in his place.
I found out this weekend that personal favorite Mike Coolbaugh has retired. Mike came to town with several different PCL teams in the past 4-5 years including Omaha and Round Rock and was always one of the good guys that I looked forward to seeing every year.