Surprise advances to AFL Championship

It came down to the final day of the Arizona Fall League regular season, but the Surprise Saguaros won the AFL West with a 17-14 record. In yesterday’s finale, five of the six teams were still in the playoff race.

AFL logoDown 2-0 after two innings, the Saguaros fought back against Salt River. They scored three runs in the fifth to take the lead and tacked on an insurance run in the sixth on KC Royals minor leaguer Alfredo Escalera‘s RBI single (1-for-4 with two strikeouts).

On Saturday, Surprise will play Mesa for the AFL Championship at Scottsdale Stadium. The game will be televised on MLB Network at 3:08pm ET. You could see Royals top prospect Josh Staumont get the start for the Saguaros.

Staumont made his final regular season start on Monday, winning his fourth AFL game. He allowed one hit, but walked four over four scoreless innings. He struck out seven, but needed 62 pitches (39 for strikes).

 

In the shortened week, Escalera played in three of the Saguaros’ games (twice in left and once in right field). He went 3-for-12 with a run scored and five strikeouts.

Ryan O’Hearn played in all four games and he moved into the cleanup spot in yesterday’s finale. He went just 3-for-15 with two walks, a run scored, two RBIs, and three strikeouts.

Mauricio Ramos ST

Mauricio Ramos during spring training 2016 (Jen Nevius).

Corey Toups played in just one game (Tuesday) and he went 0-for-2 with a walk and a strikeout.

Mauricio Ramos played in back-to-back games (Tuesday and Wednesday) at third base. He went 2-for-8 with his second home run of the AFL.

The Royals relievers all pitched in one game this week for Surprise. Lefty Eric Stout pitched on Monday, allowing two runs on three hits and a walk over two innings. He struck out four, but allowed a two-run homer. Todd Eaton pitched on Tuesday, throwing two scoreless innings (two hits and two strikeouts). He threw 20 of his 29 pitches for strikes. Right-hander Evan Beal pitched two scoreless innings on Wednesday, walking two and striking out two.

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About Jen Nevius

I first became a KC Royals fan way back in 1995 when I attended my first Wilmington Blue Rocks game. I fell in love with minor league baseball then and began following the Royals as former Blue Rocks clawed their way to the big leagues. 3+ years ago I started covering the Royals for Aerys Sports, but since the site has been shut down, I am going out on my own.
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