Ryan-ex Choplick earns Rangers monthly award

Former Ryan and Oklahoma starting pitcher Adam Choplick throws against TCU on Sunday May 11, 2014, in Fort Worth, Texas.  (AP Photo/The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Ron T. Ennis)  MAGS OUT; (FORT WORTH WEEKLY, 360 WEST); INTERNET OUT

Former Ryan and Oklahoma starting pitcher Adam Choplick throws against TCU on Sunday May 11, 2014, in Fort Worth, Texas. (AP Photo/The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Ron T. Ennis) MAGS OUT; (FORT WORTH WEEKLY, 360 WEST); INTERNET OUT

Adam Choplick capped off his first full minor-league season in style on Thursday when he was awarded the Rangers’ Minor League Player of the Month honor for August/September for the Low-A affiliate (since the minor-league season creeps into September much like the big-league year creeps into October).

Choplick, who pitched all season for Low-A Hickory in the South Atlantic League, had 35 relief appearances this season for the Rangers’ affiliate and the 6-9 lefty compiled a season ERA of 3.32 with a 2-2 record. He struck out 74 batters in 59 2/3 innings of work and opposing hitters hit .239 against him.

In August and September, Choplick had nine outings and saw his ERA dip by more than a full run to his season-ending 3.32. In those nine games, Choplick allowed just two earned runs (both in one game) in 18 2/3 innings with 23 strikeouts and allowed just 11 hits. He also earned a save on Aug. 18.

Lake Dallas’ Tompkins resigns, heading to Denton

 

Former Lake Dallas head coach John Tompkins hands the ball off to senior Parker Tuck (4) against Grapevine, Friday, June 3, 2016, at Horner Ballpark in Dallas. David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle

Former Lake Dallas head coach John Tompkins hands the ball off to senior Parker Tuck (4) against Grapevine, Friday, June 3, 2016, at Horner Ballpark in Dallas. David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle

One of the most successful coaches at Lake Dallas will not return for the 2016-2017 school year as head baseball coach John Tompkins turned in his resignation Tuesday.

Tompkins said he will accept a job to be the varsity assistant at Denton under Nick Buck.

“I think it’s just the best decision for me and my family at this time,” Tompkins said. “It was a tough decision, but it’s just what we felt like was best at this time.”

Tompkins, who was 185-116 in his nine seasons at the helm for the Falcons, is fresh off leading his team to the Class 5A Region I final before falling just shy of a state tournament appearance after being swept by District 6-5A foe and eventual state champion Grapevine.

Tompkins and Buck have a long history. The former Lake Dallas skipper coached Buck in the Texas Collegiate League with the now defunct Denton Outlaws. Tompkins said he will replace Donnie Watson, who recently took the head coaching job at Braswell, which is set to open in August.

The move was a welcomed surprise for Buck, who said he contacted his longtime friend to see if he knew anyone who would be interested in replacing Watson. The answer he got wasn’t exactly what he was expecting.

“He’s going to bring a ton,” Buck said of Tompkins. “John’s got the experience at the high school level and he’s done a great job at Lake Dallas. He’s done a great job developing players. He already has that experience on how to get every ounce of effort out of kids. I’m super excited to have him come on board and continue to develop the kids here at Denton High.”

The Falcons finished with a 26-12 record in 2016, which was the second-highest win total in Tompkins’ tenure — two shy of a 28-win season in 2011. In his nine seasons, Tompkins guided Lake Dallas to six playoff appearances and his teams racked up a 25-16 postseason record.

“It is a big blow. I hate to see him go,” said Lake Dallas athletic director Scott Head. “I understand why he’s going. He’s doing it for family reasons. He did a good job for us. Any time you lose a good coach like that it hurts, but you just have to reload.”

Head said the job opening has been posted and he will see what type of candidate pool he can get despite the resignation coming late. Teaching contracts for the upcoming school year will soon take effect.

“[Assistant athletic director and head football coach Michael] Young and I have been tossing stuff around. We’re going to throw it out there and see what we get,” Head said. “We posted it as soon as we got the resignation.

“He did a great job for us. We hate to see him go. I understand what’s going through his head though. It was a good year to leave on.”

Tompkins said the decision was a tough one considering the relationships he formed over the years, especially with his 13 departing seniors from the 2016 squad.

“We were able to make Lake Dallas a special place baseball-wise with the success we had,” Tompkins said.

Despite the tough decision, Tompkins said he’s ready for the next chapter and to work with an old pupil in Buck at an assistant level.

“I’m really excited to coach with Nick, because he’s a great baseball mind,” Tompkins said. “I think we’ll complement each other real well. I’m excited about working with him. I think we’ll balance each other out very well. I’m a little more intense and he’s a little more laid back. I think it’ll be a good combination.”

 ADAM BOEDEKER can be reached at 940-566-6872 and via Twitter at @aboedeker.

 

The day after: Thoughts on the new 6-6A

The UIL announced the new districts for its realignment at the Birdville Fine Arts Complex in North Richland Hills on Monday, February 1, 2016. (David Woo/The Dallas Morning News)

The UIL announced the new districts for its realignment at the Birdville Fine Arts Complex in North Richland Hills on Monday, February 1, 2016. (David Woo/The Dallas Morning News)

In Sunday’s paper, I wrote about some possible scenarios for Guyer in the newest district alignment following Monday’s biennial UIL realignment. The most logical of the bunch seemed to be a pairing that featured the four schools from Lewisville ISD (all in Denton County) along with old district foes Trophy Club Nelson, Coppell and Southlake Carroll.

It seemed to be a great idea and the most logical way to put Guyer alone in 6A in terms of Denton ISD schools. But as we all know, logic doesn’t always make the cut when it comes to realignment, and the result for Guyer was shocking to pretty much everyone.

Instead, Guyer ended up in the new District 6-6A, not with the Lewisville ISD schools, Nelson and Carroll, but instead with Allen, three Plano schools, two McKinney schools and Wylie??? That means Guyer’s closest trip for a district game will be a 26.6-mile trip through rush hour traffic to Plano West. (Flower Mound Marcus, for instance, would’ve been 7.2 miles). Continue reading

Former Guyer standout makes big jump for Yanks

Former Guyer catcher KJ Alexander rounds third base in a game back in 2009. Now, he's fresh off a promotion to Double-A in the Yankees organization after completely bypassing Class-A ball. DRC File Photo

Former Guyer catcher KJ Alexander rounds third base in a game back in 2009. Now, he’s fresh off a promotion to Double-A in the Yankees organization after completely bypassing Class-A ball. DRC File Photo

The day my story about Jacob Rhame’s recent promotion from High-A Rancho Cucamongo to Double-A Tulsa in the Los Angeles Dodgers system and the shorter it made his path to the big leagues ran on Saturday, I also got some other news on another former Guyer baseball standout making progress through the hierarchy of pro baseball.

Now Rhame’s former Guyer teammate KJ Alexander, aka Kevin Alexander, was promoted within the New York Yankees farm system, and it wasn’t the typical promotion.

The former Guyer star catcher, who went on to play for local powerhouse Dallas Baptist, had a pretty nice year in Rookie League last season with the Gulf Coast Yankees, hitting .304 with an .867 OPS, a homer and eight RBIs. He also walked 15 times to go with his 17 strikeouts.

But instead of starting the 2015 season back in the Rookie League, Alexander was called up, and not just to the logical next step of Class-A ball. Alexander got the call straight to Double-A Trenton, completely bypassing Class-A. He’s now on a roster loaded with some of the Yankees’ top prospects, and judging by the lofty promotion, he could be working his way into similar promise. Not bad at all for any prospect, especially not for an undrafted free agent signee.

Denton-ex, Texas Tech baseball skipper Tim Tadlock accepts Ice Bucket Challenge

If you’ve been on the Internet this week, there’s a strong chance a celebrity or somebody you know got treated to an ice bath and somebody recorded it as proof.

The ice dumping has been dubbed the “Ice Bucket Challenge.” Somebody gets challenged to have a bucket of ice dumped on them within 24 hours of the challenge or donate money to the ALS Association or have a bucket of ice dumped on them. The ALS Association says it’s the only non-profit organization in the nation combating Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

Tim Tadlock, one of Denton’s favorite baseball sons and Texas Tech’s head coach, stepped up to the plate and got soaked.

But don’t take my word for it.

Continue reading

Ryan’s Austin Jackson gets traded from Detroit to Seattle, leaves field mid-inning to a standing ovation

The MLB trade deadline has passed, and Ryan grad Austin Jackson was one of the ones one the move.

Jackson was shipped from the Detroit Tigers to the Seattle Mariners as a pawn in a three-team trade that sent Tampa Bays Rays pitcher David Price to Detroit right before the 3 p.m. CST deadline. Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal first reported the trade.

Continue reading

Argyle, Sanger well-represented on the TSWA Class 3A All-State Team

Former Sanger shortstop Ted Wisdom was one of seven area players named to the Texas Sports Writers Association Class 3A all-state baseball team.

The Texas Sports Writers Association released its Class 3A All-State baseball team, and it confirmed what we knew all season.

Argyle and Sanger had some pretty good baseball players last season.

Continue reading

Mishap proves a tease for former Argyle standout

Jay Gonzales (6) is greeted at home plate after hitting a grand slam in a playoff win over Lovejoy in this 2010 file photo.

There are several area players who could be drafted in this year’s MLB First-Year Player Draft, which began on Thursday night with Rounds 1 and 2 and continued on Friday with Round 3-10. So far, none of them have been selected.

One player who wasn’t up for selection was former Argyle standout Jay Gonzales. You remember Gonzales as one of the area’s most feared hitters who graduated in 2012 along with current Yankees prospect Austin Aune. Gonzales has spent the year battling a shoulder injury as a DH for Midland College, which has had a great season in the Junior College ranks.

But for a second on Friday afternoon, Gonzales thought he might be joining Aune in the pro baseball ranks when it appeared the Baltimore Orioles had selected him.

Continue reading

Argyle-College Station running blog

Hey folks. We’re 10 minutes from first pitch at UFCU Disch-Falk Field in the Class 3A state baseball state championship game. Argyle and College Station will both try to win their first baseball state championships.

College Station lineup: SS Walker DAvis, 2B Jaxxon Grisham, CF Ryan Johnson, C Baylor Rowlett, RF Kyle Richardson, 1B Matthew Bennett, 3B Jake Georgiades, LF Cole Whittlesey, DH Israel Martinez, P MacGregor Hines (committed to Florida)

Argyle lineup: RF Hunter Markwardt, SS Tanner Boyzuick, P Parker Mushinski, C Ryley Balch, 3B Brandon Boyzuick, CF Cutter McDonald, DH Mat Ralph, 1B Drew Gooch, LF Tyler Gibson, 2B Seth Green.

Top 1: Argyle 0, College Station 0

Walker Davis flies out to left field. 1 out. … Jaxxon Grisham grounds out to the pitcher. 2 outs… Ryan Johnson reaches first base on an error… Baylor Rowlett flies out to centerfield. 3 outs.

Bottom 1: Argyle 0, College Station 0

Hunter Markwardt grounds out to the pitcher. 1 out… Tanner Boyzuick flies out to right field. 2 outs… Parker Mushinski reaches first on a single to right field. Spencer Cullen, a courtesy runner, reaches second base on an error. Ryley Balch grounds out to second base. 3 outs.

Top 2: Argyle 0, College Station 0

Kyle Richardson grounds out to second base. 1 out… Matthew Bennett flies out to center field. 2 outs. Jake Georgiades reaches first on a walk. Georgiades reaches second on a throwing error… Cole Whittlesey reaches first on a walk. Israel Martinez flies out to left field. 3 outs.

Bottom 2: Argyle 0, College Station 0

Brandon Boyzuick lines out to shortstop. 1 out… Cutter McDonald strikes out looking. 2 outs… Mat Ralph strikes out swinging. 3 outs.

Continue reading