04 Jan

high praise

Though he hasn’t yet cracked the Texas Rangers’ Top 30 prospects chart, former Mississippi College star Blaine Crim isn’t being overlooked in the organization. “He’s what we call ‘a Rangers player,'” Texas player development director Josh Bonifay told milb.com. “He works extremely hard, he’s dedicated to his craft … .” Crim, a 19th-round pick in 2019, batted .293 with 24 home runs and 96 RBIs in 2022, playing at the Double-A and Triple-A levels. He was pegged by milb.com as the first baseman on the Rangers’ Organization All-Star team. Mississippi State alum Justin Foscue was named the second baseman on that team. Crim, now 25, has hit everywhere he has been. The 5-foot-11, 200-pound right-handed hitter batted .350 for his career at NCAA Division II MC and is a .305 hitter in pro ball. He won the batting title in Puerto Rico’s winter league after the 2021 season. He’s one to watch this year. … Foscue, the 14th overall pick in 2020, also drew praise from the Rangers’ farm director. “He knows who he is. And he executes his plan, man,” Bonifay told milb.com. Rated the Rangers’ No. 5 prospect, Foscue hit .288 with 15 homers and 81 RBIs at Double-A Frisco, helping the club win a Texas League championship.

05 Sep

putting up numbers

Blaine Crim, the ex-Mississippi College standout, batted .323 with five home runs and 16 RBIs in August, capping his strong month with a three-hit, two-homer, five-RBI game for Double-A Frisco last Wednesday. August ended. Crim’s mashing did not. On Sunday, he homered for the fifth straight game in a win at Amarillo. That’s 22 homers on the season. He is batting .556 with 10 RBIs in four September games. He set a Frisco record with five hits in a game on Friday (see previous post). For the season, he is at .291 with 80 RBIs. No flash in the pan, the 5-foot-11, 200-pound first baseman has put up impressive numbers over three pro campaigns: .305 career average (.369 on-base percentage) with 59 homers. The Rangers have a strong farm system, but it is still hard to fathom how Crim does not appear on their Top 30 prospect list as compiled by MLB Pipeline. He has quite the resume. He batted .350 over four seasons at NCAA Division II MC and was the Gulf South Conference’s player of the year in 2019. Drafted in the 19th round by Texas, the Alabama native was the Northwest League MVP in 2019, a High-A East All-Star in 2021 and a Puerto Rican Winter League batting champion earlier this year. He went 4-for-12 in MLB spring training games in March. After the way Crim has handled the challenge of Double-A pitching over the past two seasons, it’ll be interesting to see what his future holds.

17 Dec

hits keep comin’

Blaine Crim keeps hammering home this fact: He can hit. The former Mississippi College star is leading the Puerto Rican (Roberto Clemente) Winter League in batting with a .400 average. Through 22 games, the 24-year-old Texas Rangers minor leaguer has two homers, eight doubles, 21 RBIs and 13 runs for Mayaguez. Crim, an Alabama native, hit .350 over four years at NCAA Division II MC, where he was the Gulf South Conference player of the year in 2019. Drafted in the 19th round by the Rangers, the right-handed hitting first baseman has a .314 average in two pro seasons. He was the rookie Northwest League MVP in 2019, when he hit .335 with eight homers in 53 games. Playing at the High-A and Double-A levels in 2021, Crim hit a combined .296 with 29 homers and 80 RBIs. He ought to get a look in the big league spring camp, whenever that might open.

02 Aug

flip the calendar

Blaine Crim surely hated to see July come to an end, but the former Mississippi College standout can’t be disappointed in how August began. Crim, playing for High-A Hickory in the Texas Rangers’ organization, went 2-for-5 with his 20th homer and two RBIs on Sunday to power the Crawdads to a 12-7 win against Greenville. This comes on the heels of a July in which the 24-year-old first baseman hit .393 (.843 slugging percentage) with 12 home runs. Often hitting behind Mississippi State alum Justin Foscue in the Hickory lineup, Crim is batting .300 on the season with 61 RBIs. His 20 homers is tied for the High-A East lead. An Alabama native, Crim was the Gulf South Conference player of the year at MC in 2019 and was drafted in the 19th round by the Rangers that summer. He batted .373 for the Choctaws in ’19, leaving school as the career hits leader, and continued to mash in the minors, hitting .335 with eight homers at short-season Class A Spokane. Missing a full season of work in 2020 — when there was no minor league ball — doesn’t seem to have fazed Crim. P.S. Billy Hamilton’s running, diving, sliding catch in the rain back on July 6 was rated the No. 1 play for July by MLB Network. Alas, the Taylorsville High product, now with the Chicago White Sox, landed on the injured list Sunday with an oblique strain.