SPRINGFIELD, MO. (AUGUST 6, 2013) - The Frisco RoughRiders' roster overhaul continued on Tuesday as right-handed starting pitchers Jerad Eickhoff and Nick Martinez were promoted to Frisco from Advanced-A Myrtle Beach. Their additions come less than a week after five other Pelicans players were transferred to the RoughRiders. To make room for Eickhoff and Martinez, the Texas Rangers have released right-handed pitcher Joe Van Meter from the organization. Frisco's active roster is now at 25 players for the first time since July 30 when Alex Buchholz was promoted to Triple-A.
Eickhoff, 23, receives his first career promotion to Double-A and is expected to start tonight's series opener at the Springfield Cardinals. Drafted by Texas in the 15th round of the 2011 MLB June Amateur Draft, the right-hander has spent the entire season in the Pelicans rotation. In 21 starts, he posted a 7-3 record and a 3.41 ERA. The Evansville, Illinois native struck out 80 batters in 116 innings with 26 walks allowed. A reliever in his first professional season in 2011, Eickhoff has pitched just once out of the bullpen over the last two seasons. In 2012 with Hickory, he posted a 13-7 record, and his 13 wins were tied for the second most in team history.
Martinez, 23, was drafted by the Rangers in 2011 as well, taken in the 18th round out of Fordham University. Like Eickhoff, Martinez began 2013 in the Myrtle Beach rotation (aside from one relief appearance) and is making his first trip to Double-A. In 22 outings for the Pelicans, he went 10-7 with a 2.87 ERA. Ranked #27 by Baseball America among Rangers prospects entering 2012, the Carolina League All-Star fanned 105 and walked 38 in 119.1 innings before his promotion. The former Fordham Ram pitched in relief and played second base in college. His All-Star selection this season marked the second straight year he has participated in his league's mid-season All-Star Game, as he earned the same honors in the South Atlantic League in 2012.
Van Meter, 24, went 0-4 in 6 outings with a 7.56 ERA the RoughRiders. He began his season with a 3-8 record and a 3.48 ERA with Myrtle Beach before earning a mid-July promotion to the Texas League. Van Meter also pitched three games for the 'Riders in 2012 posted a 0-0 record with an 11.81 ERA. He suffered the defeat in each of his last three outings, which included back-to-back outings in which the 'Riders lost in walk-off fashion.
The RoughRiders start a six-game road trip Tuesday, beginning with three against the Springfield Cardinals. First pitch is scheduled for 7:09 p.m.
The 'Riders return to Frisco for a six-game home stand on Tuesday, August 13 against the Cardinals. Tickets remain available and may be purchased at the Dr Pepper Ballpark box office, at www.RidersBaseball.com or by calling (972) 731-9200.