Know Your Enemy: Nashville
Round Rock takes on the Sounds
By Will Eidam,
11:44AM, Sat. May 7, 2011
After a lengthy road trip, the Round Rock Express are back in town for Mother's Day weekend to take on the Milwaukee Brewer's AAA-affiliate, the Nashville Sounds. And like for most match-ups this year, you'll be heading to Dell Diamond to watch the up-and-coming prospects of the Ranger – not the visiting team.
Over the last couple of weeks, a few notable minor leaguers have been called up to the big leagues. Kansas City Royals' first basemen slugger Eric Hosmer is the latest; him being compared to 2010's NL MVP Joey Votto. While it's always exciting to see these players in action before they make it to the big leagues, the excitement doesn't always deliver.
For example, when Hosmer came to town in April for a four-game series, we hardly got a glimpse at the next Joey Votto as the then Omaha Storm Chaser only went 3 for 17 with a home run. That was not the norm since he has batted .493 in his other AAA games this year. Oh well, at least when a stud like Hosmer comes to town, there's still that feeling of excitement, like something special could happen.
With the Nashville Sounds … there won't be that kind of excitement.
Aside from the Hosmer visit there haven't been too many exciting prospects that Round Rock has gotten to face in home games, and Nashville looks to extend that streak.
In MLB.com's 2011 Top 50 prospects article, published before the season began, the Brewers were one of four teams not to have a representative on the list. The only players who are worth getting excited about have already been overhyped in the past and not just by the national media, but myself included.
Last year, for our KYE segment on the Sounds, third baseman Mat Gamel was the highly regarded prospect I urged readers to get excited about. Where is he now, you ask? Still with Nashville, batting .280 with only one home run. Not exactly someone to get excited about anymore.
As for the Sounds pitching staff? Just a bunch of names you've heard before: Manny Parra and Mark DiFelice for example, guys who've been up and down from the bigs to the minors for years, are back in the minors yet again. The Brewers top prospect Mark Rogers won't be in action thanks to a stint on the 15 day DL due to bilateral carpal tunnel syndrome. We've all been there, right?
As I've said before, though, there's still plenty of reason to head to Dell Diamond for the weekend, especially with two of the four games being day games, the perfect time to watch baseball. After all, Why do you think Chicago Cubs fans are always so happy despite never winning? [Editor's note: Because they are drunk.]
Not only that, but I can't stress enough how great it is that Dell Diamond is home to the Texas Rangers farm system and no longer the Houston Astros. Zach Jackson, a highly regarded prospect for the Rangers, was on display Friday, May 6, with a quality start, but there's still plenty of other talent to enjoy over the next three games.
I know Know Your Enemy is suppose to get you pumped up for visiting teams and prospects coming to town, but when your home product is so stinking good, sometimes it only matters to root root root for the home team.