Arlington, Texas – The Texas Rangers announced tonight that the club has signed outfielder Eric Jenkins and right-hander Michael Matuella (mat-CHU-ell-uh), the club’s second and third round selections in the 2015 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
Jenkins has been assigned to the Arizona Summer League Rangers. Matuella will be placed on the Spokane roster, but continue his rehab from ‘Tommy John’ surgery primarily in Arlington.
The 6-foot-2, 165-pound Jenkins hit .323 and recorded 27 stolen bases in as many attempts over 31 games at West Columbus High School in Cerro Gordo, North Carolina. The outfielder was rated as the 21st-best position player and 42nd-best prospect in the draft overall by Baseball America. The left-handed batter and right-handed thrower was also tabbed by MLB.com as the 37th-best prospect overall. He garnered 2015 Perfect Game Second Team All-American and Atlantic All-Region First Team honors following his senior year. The University of North Carolina-Wilmington recruit was 50-for-50 in steal attempts over his final 2 prep seasons.
The Rangers selected Matuella in the third round out of Duke University. The 6-foot-6, 220-pounder was ranked as the 23rd-best prospect (12th-best pitcher) by Baseball America, and ESPN.com listed him at 19th overall. He earned preseason All-America recognition from Baseball America (1st team), D1Baseball.com and Perfect Game (3rd team). Matuella went 1-1, 1.08 (3 ER/25.0 IP) in 6 starts for the Blue Devils in 2015 before undergoing ‘Tommy John’ surgery in March. Matuella accrued a 3.19 ERA (50 ER/141.0 IP) with a 1.19 WHIP over 39 appearances and 24 starts in his collegiate career. He emerged in 2014, recording a 10.6 SO/9 IP mark (69 SO/58.1 IP) and ranking 2nd on the Duke pitching staff with a 2.78 ERA (18 ER). Matuella attended Georgetown Preparatory School in North Bethesda, Md., and was a 2012 Perfect Game Atlantic All-Region honorable mention selection.
The Rangers officially placed outfielder Delino DeShields on the 15-day disabled list with a left hamstring strain and recalled second baseman Rougned Odor on Monday.
The estimated recovery time for DeShields is three weeks, and his injury comes with plenty of moving parts.
Odor’s callup moves Hanser Alberto to third and shifts Joey Gallo in left field. Gallo, who has worked in the outfield in Double-A, is also hitting second in Monday’s lineup.
Left fielder Josh Hamilton, who has been on the DL since June 4 (retroactive to June 1) took swings off a tee and worked front toss for the first time since his injury.
Pitcher Matt Harrison, who threw 98 pitches and allowed two runs over 6 2/3 innings Sunday in a Triple-A Round Rock rehab start, was in Arlington and said both his back and arm are feeling good.
The Rangers are also expected to announce the signings of second-round pick Eric Jenkins and third-round pick Michael Matuella on Monday. Both are in Arlington for physicals.
The Rangers draft 6-foot-7 RHP Blake Bass… converted first baseman… senior…. throws hard… first team Lone Star Conference… hometown is Lubbock
Rangers drafted SS Dylan Moore from University of Central Florida… He is a senior… has some power….
Speculation is Rangers are going to take some cheap picks to help save money for Matuella and Lemoine
Ferguson pitched at Vanderbilt… 93-96 good slider…. Had command control issues….another high risk guy….
Four college pitchers. Could be a cheap sign
Rangers went to their favorite state and drafted high school outfielder Chad Smith from Georgia. Has some potential. Rangers love Georgia
PItcher from University Houston…coming back from shoulder problems…. Another high risk, high reward pick