In the final full week in the Arizona Fall League, the Surprise Saguaros went 3-2-1 with the tie coming on Monday afternoon. The Saguaros still lead the AFL West Division by three games at 16-10.
There are four more regular season games before Saturday afternoon’s AFL Championship (3PM ET on MLB Network).
Well, there were two new additions to the Surprise roster. One being catcher Cam Gallagher, who made his debut on Tuesday (which aired on MLB.com). After a pop up in his first at-bat, Gallagher singled in the fourth and scored a run. He put together a nine pitch at-bat in the fifth, but popped up on the infield. He then grounded out in the seventh.
Gallagher caught again on Friday, going 1-for-4 with a two-run single in the ninth.
The second Royal added was reliever Matt Alvarez, who had not pitched in a game since Labor Day (he did not pitch during the playoffs for Wilmington). He also debuted on Tuesday, throwing a scoreless 5th inning and picking up his first hold. Alvarez did allow a two out single.
Bubba Starling played all but one game last week for Surprise, going 4-for-21 with six strikeouts. In Saturday night’s Military Appreciation game on MLB Network, Starling showed off his arm from right field. He collected two outfield assists (six total in the AFL), throwing a runner out at third base and a runner out at the plate on a rare 9-2 force out with the bases loaded on a single in the ninth.
Ramon Torres also played in all but one game, though he pinch ran for Gallagher in the ninth on Friday. He went 4-for-17 with three runs scored and two RBIs. Torres played second base in four games, while playing shortstop on Tuesday. In that game, he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the second and delivered an RBI single in the eighth.
On Saturday night, Torres laid down a beautiful bunt and went 2-for-4 with a run scored.
Right-handed reliever Andrew Edwards made two appearances for the Saguaros last week. On Monday, he took the blown save (his third) as he allowed a solo home run in the bottom of the 11th (Surprise allowed runs in the ninth, tenth, and 11th). Of the 20 pitches Edwards threw, 17 were strikes.
Edwards pitched much better on Friday afternoon, walking one in a scoreless inning of work. He induced three ground outs.
Fellow reliever Kevin McCarthy also pitched twice last week. On Tuesday, he pitched a perfect ninth with a strikeout. He induced two ground outs to start the inning and only threw 12 pitches (ten strikes).
On Friday, McCarthy once again pitched a perfect ninth. He struck out two and threw ten of his 16 pitches for strikes.
Catcher Zane Evans and pitcher Bryan Brickhouse are no longer in the AFL.
*Former Royal Sean Manaea was dominant on Friday for Mesa, striking out nine (the most by a pitcher in a game this season in the AFL) over five innings. He allowed a run on just two hits and a walk in the fourth inning. Manaea did not allow anything else.
Stay tuned next week for the final AFL weekly recap!