Two of the Rangers' top prospects, possibly the top two in some circles, are about to participate in the Futures Game in Phoenix as part of the All-Star festivities at Chase Field in Phoenix. Double A Frisco left-hander Martin Perez and Low-A Hickory shortstop Jurickson Profar are pretty pumped to be included.
"Nice," said Profar, the youngest player in the game at age 18. "It's a big thing. I'm very proud to be here with these great baseball players. I can learn from how they play the game."
Perez, 20, said he was told to "go get it and throw strikes" when told of his invitation to the 13th annual game. He is enjoying a bounce-back season at Double A Frisco after struggilng in 2010. He remains the Rangers' top prospect on a list that includes Profar, Leonys Martin, Robbie Erlin and Tanner Scheppers.
The key has been limiting the big inning, said Frisco manager Steve Buechele, a coach for the World Team. Perez said he's healthier this year and smarter.
"The key is my mind and my body," he said. "Last year, I got hurt in my lower body. I played winter ball in Venezuela. A lot of the players there have played in the major leagues, and they talked to me."
Asked if he wanted to go to Triple A this year, Perez had a quick answer.
"I want to be in Arlington," he said.
-- Jeff Wilson