11/10/2004 1:23 PM ET
Nov. 10: AFL game notes
|AFL Media Relations
Rafters @ Solar Sox 1:05 p.m.
RHP Eric Scmitt (1-0) vs. RHP Bradley Thompson (0-0)
Javelinas @ Saguaros 1:05 p.m.
RHP Chris Oxspring (1-2) vs. RHP John Hudgins (1-1)
Desert Dogs @ Scorpions 7:05 p.m.
RHP Keith Bucktrot (0-1) vs. RHP Dennis Sarfate (0-3)
THURSDAY'S PROBABLE STARTERS
Solar Sox @ Rafters 1:05 p.m.
RHP Jae-Kuk Ryu (1-3) vs. RHP J.D. Durbin (1-1)
Scorpions @ Desert Dogs 1:05 p.m.
RHP Dustin Moseley (0-1) vs. RHP Danny Tamayo (0-3)
Saguaros @ Javelinas 7:05 p.m.
RHP Bobby Bradley (0-1) vs. RHP Jake Dittler (0-1)
Wild Wednesday: The Arizona Fall league's 13th season continues as the race for the playoffs is heating up. The Rafters travel to Mesa to play the Solar Sox and the Javelinas face the Saguaros at Peoria Sports Complex...both games begin at 1:05 p.m. The Scorpions host the Desert Dogs at Scottsdale Stadium with a 7:05 p.m. first pitch. Each team will play 38 games and the winners of the two divisions will meet in a one-game championship on Nov. 20 at Scottsdale Stadium.
AL ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: Former Arizona Fall League player and current Oakland shortstop Bobby Crosby has been named the 2004 American League Rookie of the Year. Crosby led AL rookies in home runs (22), RBIs (64) and hits (130). The 24-year-old played for the Phoenix Desert Dogs in 2002. Crosby is the first Oakland player to win Rookie of the Year since former AFL player Ben Grieve in 1998. Since the Arizona Fall League's creation in 1992, there have been 12 players selected as Rookies of the Year that have graduated from the League.
Mike Piazza Autographed Jersey Auction: MLB.com is hosting an online auction and the proceeds will be contributed in Dernell Stenson's name to the recipient of the Sportsmanship award winner's favorite charity. This year, the AFL has donated a one-of-a-kind AFL jersey worn by Mike Piazza in 1993 and later autographed by the Met's All-Star catcher.
Q & A:M Boston Red Sox prospect Manuel Delcarmen will be answering your questions on MLB.com. Log on to the website today and send in your questions then stay tuned for their responses.
En Fuego: Red Sox prospects Manny Delcarmen and Sheldon Fulse sparked the Saguaros to a 8-6 win over the Desert Dogs. Delcarmen pitched 2.2 solid innings and held the Desert Dogs to only one hit earning his second win of the AFL season. Fulse led Peoria's offense with three hits and scored one run. Peoria's offense continued to be hot from top to bottom as they combined for 14 hits. Wayne Lydon (NYM), Chase Lambin (NYM), Aaron Hill (TOR), Jason Botts (TEX) and J.R. House (PIT) had two hits apiece. Botts belted a home run, his fourth of the season. Toronto prospect John Hattig added a triple that drove in three runs. Closer Jeff Miller (PIT) earned his fourth save behind 1.2 innings of one-hit ball. The Saguaros have won five straight games and are in pursuit of the first place Scorpions for a playoff spot.
Javelinas vs. Solar Sox: Six runs in the eighth inning for the Javelinas broke a close game wide open and gave Peoria an 11-6 win. Down 6-5 in the bottom of the eighth the Javelinas had two outs and nobody on base when they had six consecutive hits. Eli Whiteside (BAL) hit a three-run home run and Jason Cooper (CLE) hit a double that scored two runs. Six runs scored in the eighth for Peoria as they batted around to take a six-run lead. Five different Javelinas' players had a multiple hit game in the win over the Mesa Solar Sox. Landon Stockman (CLE) picked up the win after pitching 1.2 scoreless innings. Peoria leadoff hitter Ben Johnson (SD) was 3-for-5 and Jason Cooper (CLE) was 4-for-5 in the win. Whiteside and Jerry Owens (MTL) both had two hits.
Red Hot Rafters: In a battle of the two teams that share Scottsdale Stadium the Rafters beat the Scorpions 8-6 Tuesday night. The win puts the Rafters 2.5 games behind first place Phoenix in the National Division, and with the loss the Scorpions now only have a two game lead over the second place Saguaros in the American Division. Kevin West (MIN) led Grand Canyon's offense. He finished 3-for-4 with 3 RBIs and a run scored. Jason Bartlett (MIN), Lance Niekro (SF) and Rob Bowen (MIN) had two hits apiece in the win for Grand Canyon. Yankees prospect Mitch Jones added a home run, his first of the season. Closer David Aardsma (SF) earned the win.
BIRTHDAY WISHES: Happy Birthday to Peoria Saguaros Sheldon Fulse.
MLB.com: Log on to MLB.com for the latest news on the Arizona Fall League. Click on the Minors tab to access the Fall League website where you will find player journals, stories and more. You can sign up for an Arizona Fall League weekly newsletter emailed directly to your inbox.
HALL OF FAME: The Arizona Fall League continues its tradition of honoring former player and managers by inducting them into the Hall of Fame. This years inductees are Garret Anderson (Rafters), Albert Pujols (Scorpions) and Tony Peña Sr. (Saguaros). Anderson's ceremony (10/29) and Peña's ceremony (11/3) were both completed at Scottsdale Stadium. The ceremony for Albert Pujols will be postponed until the 2005 Arizona Fall League season. Due to Pujols' extended season participating in the World Series and his prior commitment to the Nike Tour, there was not sufficient time to schedule for the 2004 AFL season. We look forward to honoring him next year.
Dolan on MLB.com RADIO: Today Brett Dolan will call the action of the Javelinas-Saguaros game at Peoria Sports Complex. The game will be heard live 1:05 p.m. (MST) on MLB.com.
Championship Game: The winner of the National Division and the American Division will face off for a one game playoff to determine the 2004 AFL Championship. The Championship game will be played at Scottsdale Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 20 at 1:05 p.m. The winner of the Joe Black MVP Award will be presented in a pre-game ceremony.
MONTH IN REVIEW: November is here, which means the first month of the Arizona Fall League season has come to a close. A couple of hitters are tearing up the Fall League and have been since day one. Two relievers have been nearly perfect for their teams coming out of the bullpen, and two of the AFL's six teams remain atop their respective divisions with just over two weeks until the championship game.
Detroit prospect Chris Shelton is a contender for the Triple Crown and has hit his Grand Canyon Rafters into playoff contention. Going into Thursday's action, Shelton leads the league in hitting at .425, has the most home runs in the Fall League with six and has 29 RBIs, five more than hot-hitting Conor Jackson of Arizona. Shelton joins the AFL after beginning the year with Toledo in the AAA International League, and left the Mud Hens on 7/7 to be called up to the Tigers.
Ryan Howard's Arizona Fall League season with the Phoenix Desert Dogs has been under a lot of hype following his 2004 season. The Phillies' prospect hit 37 home runs for Philadelphia's AA team in Reading, PA, to lead the minor leagues. Howard began his fall league campaign right where he left off the regular season, hitting .379 with three home runs and 22 RBIs through Thursday's games.
In general the Arizona Fall League has been a hitter's league in 2004, with four of the six teams posting batting averages over .300. Out of the first 71 games of the 2004 season, only 10 saw less than eight runs between the two teams.
The pitcher in the Arizona Fall League with the least amount of professional experience is having as much success as anyone. Huston Street was drafted by Oakland in the first round of the 2004 draft out of the University of Texas and is playing for the Phoenix Desert Dogs after stops at three different levels in his first professional season. Street was the Fall League's pitcher of the week in late October, and has only allowed one earned run through his first 12 innings of work. Street has four saves and has held opponents to a .225 batting average.
Jeff Miller has been a solid reliever out of the Peoria Saguaros' bullpen only allowing two earned runs in his first 12 innings of work. The Pittsburgh farmhand is the AFL Pitcher of the Month for October after holding opponents to a .171 batting average, striking out 12 batters and not walking anybody. Miller is in the Fall League after pitching for the Pirates' AA affiliate in Altoona, PA in 2004.
Both division-leading teams have led since the first week of the season. With eight games to go, the Phoenix Desert Dogs are atop the National Division by 2.5 games and the Scottsdale Scorpions lead the American Division by two games.
Sportsmanship Award: MLB.com, the official website of Major League Baseball, and the Arizona Fall League (AFL), regarded throughout professional baseball as the "graduate school" for Major League Baseball's top prospects, announced Wednesday, Nov. 3 the creation of the Dernell Stenson AFL Sportsmanship Award.
This new annual award, named for Dernell Stenson, a 2003 player in the AFL who was tragically killed, will be given to the AFL player who demonstrates the qualities that Dernell brought to the ball park every day; a quiet, hard-nosed attitude, a player who does his job without complaint, who - as many who played with Dernell said - played the game the way it was meant to be played.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.