Why do I have a picture of a owl at the front of this piece? Read on a bit…
The Arizona Fall League is is full swing now with a week of play already in the books. Let’s take a quick look at the Braves’ farmhands that are participating and their performances thus far (small sample size rules prevail for now; mlb.com stat sources):
Yes, I do have to separate one player from the rest: second baseman Tommy La Stella is leading his team – the Scottsdale Scorpions – in all of these categories:
- .400 batting average
- 1.171 OPS
- .571 OBP
- 4 walks
- 4 hits (tie)
- 2 doubles (tie)
- 6 total bases (tie)
- 5 RBI
- .600 slugging (tie)
- No strikeouts
All of that in only 10 official ABs (14 plate appearances over 3 games). Oh, and no errors in the field… guess that also ties for the team lead! Heck, even wunderkid Alen Hanson has 3 already.
So the owl stands alone this week… well, our owl does anyway: that picture above is the mascot of the Temple University Owls… and its name? Stella.
Okay – true - it was a reach. So somebody go tell our photo guys to snap some AFL pics for us, and we’ll show some actual players.
As for the rest of our hitters…
- 3B Kyle Kubitza: .273 (3 for 11), double, RBI, walk; but 6 Ks
- SS Elmer Reyes: no hits in 6 AB (1 walk, 2 K). Hard to get ABs with Hanson on the team.
- OF Robby Hefflinger: .167 (2 for 12) with a double and RBI. 7K, 1 walk (leads team in K rate)
A bit of work to do here:
- Aaron Northcraft: 7.71 ERA in 2.1 innings. 3 hits, 2 runs (both earned). 2 walks, 4 K
- John Cornely: 9.00 ERA. 2 earned in 2 innings; 3 hits, 3 runs, 3 walks, 2 K.
- Juan Jaime: (shown at right) 5.40 in 1.2 innings – 1 earned run (a homer), 4 walks, 1 K.
- Shae Simmons: 13.50 – though that’s 1 earned run while getting 2 outs – both by strikeout. 2 walks and 2 hits mess up his line, though.
At this point, no pitcher on the entire team has even reached 4 innings pitched, so as I say: it’s early yet.
The Scottsdale team won their opener in rather dramatic fashion, but haven’t put enough hitting and pitching together since: they are 1-4, and in third/last place of the East division behind 4-0-1 Mesa and 2-3 Salt River. But there’s a ways to go: 26 games through the middle of November… we’ll keep you posted.