It is often said that the Arizona Fall League is a hitters' league. Never has than been more evident than Saturday afternoon in Surprise.
The Saguaros drew a pair of sevens, scoring that many in the first and second innings. However, they had to hold on to defeat visiting Mesa by a 16-10 score in a wild afternoon of baseball. Surprise improved to 6-4 with the win.
Three of four Cardinals position players were in the starting lineup for Surprise. Colin Walsh played in right field and batted third. Catcher Cody Stanley was the cleanup hitter and centerfielder Mike O'Neill batted ninth. Kolten Wong took the day off.
Walsh reached base twice in five plate appearances with a walk, single and two runs scored. Stanley singled and scored twice in five at-bats. Both players struck out once. O'Neill singled twice and doubled in five at-bats, drove in three and scored once.
In fact, every hitter in the Saguaros lineup crossed home plate at least once in the offensive explosion.
Mesa starter and Astros prospect Jarred Cosart did not make it through the first inning and took the loss. The right-hander moved to Houston in the Hunter Pence trade last season. Surprise starter Justin Marks (KC) was awarded the win despite allowing five runs, two earned, in 2 1/3 innings.
Other Saguaros with big days at the plate include shortstop Luis Sardinas (Tex), who singled, homered and drove in four and third baseman Dustin Lawley (NYM), who singled, doubled and plated three. The Cubs' top prospect, shortstop Javier Baez, homered with three RBI for Mesa.
None of the Cardinals four pitchers assigned to the Arizona Fall League pitched on Saturday. Their ERAs were probably better as a result, as seven errors were committed by the two clubs and earned runs were charged against eight of the 14 pitchers to take the mound on the day.
Monday's game: at Peoria, 12:35 pm MT (2:35 pm CT), Boone Whiting (1-0, 1.69).
What's next? The AFL is off on Sundays, but we won't be. Look for our first Cardinals AFL Weekly Report summarizing results to date from all Cardinals AFL assignees.
Brian Walton can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Follow Brian on Twitter.
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