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Texas Rangers Minor League Update: Cody Buckel Makes Baseball America's Hot Sheet

The rich are getting richer... at least, it appears that way. Texas Rangers prospect Cody Buckel made Baseball America's weekly hot sheet this week, after hurling yet another dominating start this week.

Not surprisingly, the folks at Baseball America lauded the Rangers and Buckel.

When the Rangers very publicly revamped their pitching development program a few years ago, they were bucking conventional wisdom by allowing pitchers to long toss at football-field length distances, emphasizing throwing between starts and letting pitching coaches-not pitch limits-determine when a pitching prospect would exit each start. Just a couple of years later, that approach is nearing closer and closer to being considered conventional wisdom thanks to a growing list of pitching success stories. Buckel is part of the next wave of young Rangers pitchers. On the heels of a dominant season in low Class A Hickory, Buckel has had no problems making the jump to high Class A-he's striking out more than a third of the batters he faces and he's yet to allow more than one run or two hits in any of his four starts this year.

Buckel likely needs a promotion to AA Frisco to be challenged -- and he'll probably get that sooner this year rather than later. On the young season, Buckel has pitched 21.1 innings, allowing just seven hits while issuing eight walks and striking out 29. Buckel's ERA on the year is microscopic as well, sitting at 0.84.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.