Arizona Fall League Update
By John Verburg
Its been a little bit since we checked in on the action in the Arizona Fall League, so I figured it was time for a bit of an update. The Tigers have 7 guys on the Salt River Rafters, and some of them are contributing to what has been a good team. The Salt River team leads the East Division with a 13-6 record.
Please keep in mind that all of these are small samples, but the competition is tough, so any success is encouraging.
Without further delay, here is your update…..
Rob Brantly (catcher)
With 3 catchers on the squad, there isn’t really opportunity for Brantly to play every day. However, he has made the most of his chances so far. Brantly is 8 for 21 with 3 doubles. He has only struck out once in his 21 at-bats, but has only drawn one walk. His .381 average leads the Salt River squad, and he has an OPS of .933.
Hernan Perez (2B)
Perez, who made a name for himself as a prospect in 2011, has continued his solid season in the AFL. Perez, is starting to see a little more playing time as of late, and in 29 at-bats, he is hitting .345. The discouraging thing about his performance thus far is that he has not drawn a walk and struck out 6 times. I’m not surprised by the whiffs, I felt like Perez would be over-matched, but he is going to have to work on getting on base more.
Dixon Machado (SS)
Machado is young SS whose glove is the real intriguing part of his game. He has an idea at the dish as well though, but needs to gain strength. Thus for Machado has held his own, going 6 for 24 for a .250 average, while slugging 2 triples. Machado has also walked 4 times while striking out 4 times as well. For a guy that is developing, and has some speed to burn, Machado would do well to continue that kind of ratio going forward.
Casey Crosby (Pitcher)
Crosby is working out of the bullpen for the Rafters, and so far has made 5 appearances. While Crosby has limited the damage, at least to his own ERA, he is struggling otherwise. He has given up 2 runs in those five innings, but he has given up a whopping 17 base runners. Crosby has given up 10 hits and walked 7. Pitching is difficult in that environment, but that is pretty ugly.
Andy Oliver (Pitcher)
I feel like I could almost just copy Crosby’s summary and paste it here for Oliver. Their struggles are kind of one and the same. Command. Oliver has been operating as a starter for the Rafters. He has started 4 games, and in those games, he has pitched 7.1 innings. Oliver is giving up a ton of base runners as well. In those 7.1 innings, 18 runners have reached via the walk or by hit. The difference is Oliver has been burned for some runs, giving up 5 thus far for an ERA of 6.14.
Tyler Stohr (Pitcher)
Stohr is a relief pitcher for the Tigers, and that again is his role in Arizona. I am actually quite surprised at how things are going for Stohr thus far. He is tied for the lead on the team in appearances with 8, and is currently carrying an ERA of 2.35. In 7.2 innings Stohr has struck out 6, and given up 6 hits while walking 4.
Matt Hoffman (Pitcher)
I am not sure if Hoffman has been hurt or something, but he has only 2 appearances, and looks like he has been replaced by another Tiger reliever Rob Waite. I will try and find something for my next update and let you all know. These two guys have combined for 5.2 scoreless innings of relief thus far.