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Texas Rangers are Calling Up the No. 2 Pick from the 2021 MLB Draft

The Texas Rangers announced on Tuesday that their top pitching prospect Jack Leiter will be promoted to the major league roster. Leiter will make his debut on Thursday against the Detroit Tigers. The club’s No. 8 prospect struggled to put things together after being drafted second overall by the Rangers in the 2021 MLB Draft. However, the right-hander has put up a strong performance at Triple-A Round Rock. He struck out 25 in 14 1/3 innings while posting a 1-1 record and a 3.77 ERA.

Rangers to Promote Jack Leiter

If the last name rings a bell, it should. The second-generation talent is the son of two-time World Series champion Al Leiter, the nephew of 11-year MLB veteran Mark Leiter and the cousin of Chicago Cubs reliever Mark Leiter Jr. The fourth Leiter to make the majors annihilated hitters at the college level with Vanderbilt. He struck out 41 percent of batters in two seasons before the Rangers took him in the draft. In college, he pitched to a 13-4 record and a 2.08 ERA with 201 strikeouts in 125 2/3 innings for the Commodores. But he did struggle with his command after starting in Double-A right out of the gate.

Striking Out Batters More than Walks in the Minors

When he entered the pro ranks, Leiter walked more than 13 percent of batters with an ERA well over 5.00 in each of his first two seasons. At the Triple-A level, it was a different story, with a 25:3 K:BB in 14 1/3 innings. Leiter struck out almost 44 percent of batters while walking them at a 5.3 clip. He gave up 11 hits, but four of them were home runs, pushing Leiter to a 3.77 ERA. There’s lots to be excited about with Leiter, who threw 12 2/3 innings for Texas at camp.

Last season, Leiter’s stint on the development list saw him make small changes to his pitching mechanics. They have paid off for him and Rangers general manager Chris Young praised the young pitcher.

“Jack’s done great,” Young recently said to “He had a great spring and our expectation is if Jack continues to trend the way he has, he will help us out. The best thing for Jack’s development is likely to continue the success in Triple-A for a period of time. He’s in consideration based on how he’s performed to help us at any point should somebody go down or should somebody underperform or he performed to a level that warrants consideration.”

Main Photo: © Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports


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