The Surprise Saguaros won five of six in week five in the Arizona Fall League to take the lead in the Western Division entering the final week of play. The Saguaros have won seven of ten overall and lead by just a half game over the Peoria Javelinas who are on their own hot streak, winning eight of ten. There are four games to play. The division leaders will play for the league championship on Saturday, November 15.
Let’s take a look at the numbers for the Red Sox players:
In case you missed it, Rusney Castillo left the team due to a bruised thumb sustained on October 20. Castillo was selected to appear in the AFL’s Rising Stars game, but was scratched due to the injury which had not sufficiently healed despite a week and a half of rest. His offseason future is remains uncertain at this point.
Sean Coyle has never gotten back on track after a solid first week. Coyle was one for ten, crossing the plate one time on the week with two strikeouts and a walk. Coyle is slashing just .164/.236/.281 with no homers and four RBI in 16 games for the AFL season. Will his poor performance in the AFL affect whether the Red Sox protect him from the Rule 5 draft?
Deven Marrero extended his AFL hitting streak to nine games, going four for 11 with a double, three runs and an RBI. For the AFL season Marrero has slashed .320/.443/.420.
Mike Miller joined the Saguaros for this week’s games. Playing for High-A Salem and Double-A Portland, Miller slashed .305/.363/.379 with three homers and 30 RBI in 72 games this season. Miller went hitless in 13 plate appearances, drawing two walks, with two runs, an RBI, and three strikeouts. Miller started two games in left field (for the first time as a professional) and one at third base. Perhaps they see another Brock Holt-type utility player as Miller has split time at third base, shortstop, and second base in each of his three professional seasons.
Keith Couch continues to struggle after a strong AFL start. Couch surrendered three runs on four hits in four innings in his one start of the week. His AFL season ERA stands at 6.48. Any remote chance at a 40-man roster spot seems now gone for this season.
Aaron Kurcz has perhaps pitched better than his 4.35 AFL ERA, allowing only eight hits (.216 batting average against) in his 10.1 innings but he has been plagued by eight walks, while striking out 11 batters. Kurcz allowed a run on two hits and two walks and no strikeouts in 1.1 innings in his lone appearance this week.
Forgotten man Madison Younginer appeared for the first time for the Saguaros in sixteen days on November 8. The results were not pretty, two runs on three hits in one inning. His AFL ERA stands at 7.11 in 6.1 innings.
Robby Scott was scored upon for the first time in six appearances, surrendering a run on two hits with two walks and a strikeout in his first appearance of the week. After a scoreless frame in his second game of the week, his AFL season ERA stood at 1.50 with 12 strikeouts in 12 innings.
Stay tuned to BoSox Injection for coverage of final week of the Arizona Fall League.