Young arms adapting well at Double-A

by Dan M | Posted on Sunday, August 30th, 2015

sadzeck

Lance Ragland

“You always want to progress in this game,” proclaimed Frisco RoughRider Ryne Slack. The reliever earned a promotion to the Texas Rangers’ Double-A affiliate on August 2 and joined his old High Desert Mavericks (Advanced-A) teammate Connor Sadzeck, who was called up the day before.
Sadzeck and Slack both have climbed major hurdles in advancing their careers.
Sadzeck underwent Tommy John Surgery on his right elbow and missed the entire 2014 campaign after an impressive 2013 season for Hickory (Single-A).
Slack went undrafted out of Spartanburg Methodist College in 2012. After tossing 17 innings for the Forest City Owls in a college summer league, the Rangers came knocking and signed the lefty to a contract.
Sadzeck has rebounded since a tough debut outing in Frisco. After allowing six runs and recording only one out in that first start, the right-hander has given up two runs over 10 2/3 innings. The Illinois-native was stellar in his August 20 start against the Tulsa Drillers. He tossed six innings of hitless ball and picked up his first Double-A win. Frisco Manager Joe Mikulik was full of praise after the performance.
“He showed ability to throw strikes when he really needed to,” noted Mikulik. “ When he fell behind in the count, he got right back in with his fast ball.”
Slack hasn’t slacked off since he landed in Frisco. The relief pitcher has appeared in seven games out of the bullpen and has yet to allow a run in over nine innings of work.
The left-hander credits pitching in the hitter friendly California League for his continued development. “It’s definitely not easy to pitch there,” said Slack. “You try and stay aggressive and continue to attack and control what you can control.”
Riders pitching coach Jeff Andrews has been impressed with Slack’s work on the mound. “He is creating his own luck. He’s pitching ahead, he is keeping the ball down,” said Andrews. “He is checking off all of the boxes and using all his pitches for strikes.”
Slack has been a nice addition to a bullpen that lost a strong arm in Andrew Faulkner, who was promoted to Triple-A Round Rock on August 11. Faulkner did not allow a run and gave up only two hits in his last ten appearances for the Riders.
Slack exclaimed, “It’s always great to move up and progress towards your goal of getting to the Major Leagues.”
The reliever and Sadzeck both made significant strides in their professional careers by moving up the ladder and into Double-A baseball.

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