Kirkman Called to Texas
Via a press release from the Texas Rangers, it is confirmed that former LumberKings’ left-hander Michael Kirkman (’06-’08) has been called up to the 25-man roster to take the place of fellow former King Derek Holland (’08), who has been sent back to triple-A Oklahoma City.
Kirkman, 23, went 13-3 with a 3.09 ERA and 130 strikeouts in 24 games with the RedHawks. He lead the PCL in strikeouts, ranked second in wins and third in ERA at the time of the promotion.
The fifth-round pick by Texas back in 2005, Kirkman went 0-3 with a 6.98 ERA in six outings with the Kings in 2006 before having his season ended by a hamstring injury suffered in the team’s final series ever at C.O. Brown Stadium in Battle Creek, MI. He’d return again in 2007 (0-1, 7.43 in five games, two starts) and 2008 (4-3, 4.36 in 15 games, 14 starts) before really taking off last year. Kirkman went 4-1, 2.06 in Bakersfield and ended up in double-A Frisco by year’s end, going 5-7 with a 4.19 ERA in 18 starts for the RoughRiders.
Kirkman will join first-baseman Justin Smoak (Texas/Seattle), right-hander Omar Beltre (Texas) and 1B/OF Mitch Moreland (Texas) as former Clinton players to make Major League debuts this season.
EDIT: I knew I forgot someone. Thomas Diamond also debuted with the Chicago Cubs this year.
Kirkman will be wearing #62 and will most likely be pitching out of the bullpen. I’ll post an update after he makes his official debut.