With a 2-4 record last week, the Travelers continue to lose ground in the North division of the Texas League standings.
Going 1-2 against both Frisco and Midland last week, the Travs are 12 games behind Springfield. Their elimination number is nine with 20 games remaining. This week, Arkansas travels to Frisco and Midland for three-game series beginning Tuesday through Sunday. After an off-day Monday, they return to Dickey-Stephens Park on Tuesday, Aug. 22 for a four-game homestand with Tulsa, who is three games behind Springfield.
In a span of a week, the Travelers had five changes to their roster. The moves began Aug. 6 when outfielder Kyle Waldrop was promoted to Triple-A. Waldrop left the Travelers with his name in several Texas League categories including a league-best 28 doubles. He was also third in runs batted in with 68 and eighth in percentage with .303. Right-handed pitcher Chase De Jong joined the Travs from Tacoma. Later during the week, outfielder Willie Argo was promoted from Single-A, catcher Steven Baron came from Triple-A and pitcher Bryan Evans, who was supposed to start last Sunday, was scratched as he was promoted to Triple-A and scheduled to start.
Though the Travs haven’t been able to put together a string of victories, several players are having success.
—Since he joined the Travs on July 22, centerfielder Braden Bishop has made his presence known both at the plate and in the outfield. With several catches that could make the highlight film, he is making his first appearance in Double-A. Starting every game since his promotion, he has reached base in all 22 games (as of Tuesday). Additionally, Bishop has four games with three hits and has recorded seven multi-hit games.
—Outfielder Chuck Taylor is heating up at the plate again. After owning a .386 average at the end of May, his average was a combined .197 in June and July. Over his last 12 games (as of Tuesday), he has at least one hit in nine of them going 14-48 (.292). Additionally, he has reached base in 14 consecutive games and has five multi-hit contests.
—Several players are close to reaching career milestones before the season ends. Last Sunday, shortstop Joey Wong scored two runs to go over 300. Taylor and Ryan Casteel both need two to reach the 300-mark. Casteel also needs one double to reach 150 while Jeff Kobernus is two hits shy of reaching 600 for his career.
—The Travelers are present in several Texas League categories including:
Wong’s 61 bases on balls Is second-most in the league and his on-base percentage (.313) ranks 13th. Though he was promoted to Triple-A and was leading the league in batting percentage when he left, Ian Miller is tied with B.J. Boyd of Midland with a .326 average. Last week, the Travs held the spot as the leaders in fielding percentage with a .984 and had committed fewer (at the time 65) which lead to the pitching staff recording 40 unearned runs which is the lowest in the league.