Needing lefties in Minors, Rangers take Martin

The Rangers could use more left-handed pitching in their farm system, and they selected one in the fourth round of the First-Year Player Draft on Friday. With the 126th overall pick, the Rangers took 6-foot-4 left-hander Brett Martin from Walters State (Tenn.) College.

Martin pitched in 16 games, including six starts, and was 9-2 with a 3.83 ERA for Walters State. He struck out 63 batters and walked 31 in 4 21/3 innings. Opponents hit .211 off him. Martin was originally planning to go to the University of Tennessee, but he transferred to Walters State after the fall semester.

He has only thrown 134 2/3 innings over his last three years, including his final two seasons in high school so the Rangers could be getting a fresh arm with a high ceiling.

"A good frame, good angle on his fastball and spin on his breaking ball," scouting director Kip Fagg said.

The Rangers have seven pitchers in their Top 20 prospects as ranked by MLB.com, but only one is a left-hander.

The Draft concludes on Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 12 p.m. CT.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.