Mesa (Dae-Eun Rhee) @ Surprise (Seth Blair), 12:35PM PST
Phoenix (Brian Flynn) @ Peoria (Kyle Gibson), 12:35 PST
Scottsdale (Kyle Kaminska) @ Salt River (Ryan Perry) 6:35 PST.
Salt River 11 @ Mesa 3:
Salt River scored four runs in the top of the first inning, highlighted by back to back homers from Matt Davidson (3 run job) and Matt Skole. For the game, Davidson and Skole, who hit back to back in the lineup in the four and five holes, combined to go 5-9 with four runs scored and seven RBI.
Phoenix 5 @ Scottsdale 6 in 11 innings.
Phoenix came back from an early 3-1 deficit to take a 5-3 lead in the top of the ninth only to see Scottsdale tie the score on a two run single by Slade Heathcott. Scottsdale scored the winning run in the 11th on an error by Edward Salcedo, a fielders choice grounder, awild pitch and walk-off single by Carlos Ramirez.
Peoria 4 @ Surprise 8
I was at this game and the first thing I noticed when I got to the park and picked up the scout pack was the absence of Billy Hamilton's name from the lineup. After some asking around it appears Hamilton is still at the Reds' complex down the road in Goodyear working on his outfield play; he's making progress but isn't ready yet for game action.
For Peoria, catcher Chris Herrmann had three hits and looked pretty good behind the plate. Mike Zunino was the DH unfortunately, I had hoped to see him behind the plate. As I said on the Twitter chat, he "looks like a hitter", feet close together and ever so slightly open with his hands held high. He uses the whole field, hit two balls each to the right and left side. He doesn't run well at all which isn't surprising for a catcher.
A friend works for the Phillies and when the rosters came out specifically called me and had me put third baseman Cody Asche on my watch list, and I'm glad he did. In my opinion (small sample size noted) he was the best player on the field yesterday. Evan Bigley and Vinnie Catricala (playing LF) manned the eighth and ninth spots in the order for Peoria and combined to go 0-8 with six K's, although both made nice defensive plays in the OF.
For Surprise, Rangers' 1B prospect Chris McGuiness went 4-5, including a line drive homer to RC through a 10 mph wind. I was looking forward to seeing Mets' OF Cesar Puello, on video he had an unusual starting point with his bat reminiscent to Albert Belle, he's completely changed his set-up, although it's still somewhat baffling why a guy his size can go a whole season and hit four homers.
Pitching is hard to gauge in the AFL because there are rules regarding pitch counts and innings and appearances. Each team used seven pitchers yesterday and for guys who are infatuated with radar readings it wasn't your day. Only three or four guys hit the mid-ninety mark, most were in the high eighties and one, Rangers submariner Ben Rowen, topped off at 83.
Wednesday is also "taxi squad" day, meaning select players are only active two days a week. That's at least some justification to why Didi Gregorious and Nick Franklin didn't play for Peoria, same for Kolten Wong on the Surprise side.