The Arizona Fall League season started on Tuesday, with the Surprise Saguaros (3-1) opening up their season playing their home games at Salt River Field due to renovations in Surprise. The seven KC Royals representatives got into action over the Saguaros first four games.
The Saguaros lost their opener late, as right-hander Kevin McCarthy took the loss. Over just 2/3 of an inning, he allowed five runs on four hits while striking out one. He allowed two home runs and left with a runner on base (which scored).
McCarthy had some redemption on Thursday, when he entered the game with one on and two out in the fourth and induced an inning ending ground out (five pitches, four strikes).
Bubba Starling started three of the Saguaros first four games. He has played some right field, along with centerfield. After going 0-for-4 in the first game, Starling has gone 6-for-9 with two home runs, three RBIs, and three runs scored over the next two games. He also had an outfield assist from right field.
Zane Evans made his AFL debut in the opener, going 1-for-3 with a walk, a run scored, and a strikeout (as the DH). Evans caught on Friday, going 1-for-4 with two walks, two RBIs, a run scored, and a strikeout.
Brooks Pounders made his AFL debut in his start on Wednesday. He pitched three shutout innings, allowing two hits while striking out three. Pounders induced four ground outs (37 pitches, 28 strikes).
Ramon Torres made his AFL debut on Wednesday, starting at second base. He went 3-for-4 with a double and a run scored. He did commit an error. On Friday, Torres played shortstop and batted leadoff, going 4-for-7 with two doubles, two runs scored, and an RBI.
On Saturday, the AFL had their annual Hitting Challenge. Each team had four representatives, with Torres representing both the Royals and the Saguaros. He came in second place on the American League side, tallying 1,300 points.
Andrew Edwards made his AFL debut on Wednesday. He got the blown save, as he allowed a two out, solo home run in the 8th inning. Edwards did strike out one.
Bryan Brickhouse made his AFL debut in relief on Thursday, pitching the 7th inning. He allowed a hit and two walks over a scoreless inning. Starling threw a runner out at the plate with Surprise leading 2-0.
Former Royal Sean Manaea made the start for Mesa on Wednesday. He allowed a leadoff triple and an RBI ground out. After a two out single in the first, Manaea retired the final ten batters he faced (4IP, 2H, R, 0BB, 4K).
Stay tuned next Sunday for another AFL recap!