Snyder, Winn among Minors Awards winners

October 2nd, 2021

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers announced the organization’s top Minor League Award winners on Friday afternoon, including multiple MLB Pipeline Top 30 Prospects.

Tom Grieve Player of the Year: 1B-3B

Nolan Ryan Pitcher of the Year: RHP

Reliever of the Year: RHP Nick Snyder

Defender of the Year: SS-2B

True Ranger Award: OF / INF

Harris, Winn, Snyder and Thompson will be honored before the Rangers' matchup with Cleveland on Saturday.

Harris, ranked as Texas’ No. 17 prospect, is arguably the best hitter in the entire organization after playing in his first full Minor League season. He finished with a slash line of .327/.401/.542/.943 between Low-A Down East and High-A Hickory. After hitting just one home run in 2019, when Harris was selected in the 11th round of the Draft by the A’s, he logged career highs in homers (20) and stolen bases (25).

While Harris has notably hit for average in his one previous Minor League season in 2019, he said the recent uptick in power has just been a product of getting strong in the weight room

Winn, ranked as the club’s No. 3 prospect and No. 60 overall in baseball, has been called the Rangers’ “most special pitching prospect” by co-pitching coach Brendan Sagara. Winn had a career year, spending most of his time with Double-A Frisco and finishing with two appearances at Triple-A Round Rock. He went 4-3 with a 2.41 ERA and 11.2 strikeouts per nine innings. He held opponents to a slash line of .146/.239/.259/.497.

“The big highlight is just the team that we had in Frisco, and the team that I was just with in Round Rock,” Winn said. “There were just a lot of good, good guys. My personal highlight, I think, would be going to the [All-Star] Futures Game and getting the chance to go back home [to Colorado] and pitch in front of my friends and family, and in a stadium that was kind of familiar to me.”

Snyder is the only one of the Award winners to have made it to Arlington this season. He made his MLB debut on Aug. 21, tossing a perfect inning against the Red Sox in the Rangers’ 10-1 win.

Snyder undoubtedly had the wildest Minor League season of all the Award winners, starting at Hickory and finishing the season with the big league club. Across all MiLB levels, he went 1-1 with a 2.45 ERA, four saves and 47 strikeouts to go with just five walks over 28 relief appearances. Over four appearances with the Rangers, he posted a 4.91 ERA before being shut down on Sept. 14.

“It's been absolutely insane,” Snyder said. “It's been really cool, obviously, just getting up here, but it has been the most stressful year of my life for sure. It was definitely a good stressful, and I'm glad this whole year went the way it did.”

Acuña, the younger brother of Braves right fielder Ronald Acuña Jr., is the Rangers’ No. 8 prospect. He’s spent time at both middle infield positions for Down East. His 175 assists led the Wood Ducks and ranked eighth among Low A East.

The True Ranger Award is the most recently established and highlights players who represent the core values of the organization in a positive light both on and off the field. Thompson, the club's No. 28 prospect who had a career year in Frisco with a .275/.325/.483/.808 slash line, and Rodriguez, who hit .271 with five home runs and 63 RBIs with the Wood Ducks, were the honorees.

Winn, who was Thompson’s teammate with the RoughRiders, agreed wholeheartedly that the outfielder embodies everything the Rangers’ organization is about.

Thompson has struggled with injuries throughout his Minor League career, but he was able to remain healthy for the entire Double-A season.

“The main thing after those two years was staying consistent and knowing I can play,” Thompson said. “That was a long time without really seeing success in baseball. At the end of the day, I was just trusting in myself that I'm gonna get the work done, I'm gonna stay consistent and everything else is gonna work out for the best.”