Nov 192015
 

Christopher-Bostick-11-19-1The Solar Sox posted a picket fence to take a 3-1 lead in the middle innings, then put the game away with a three-spot in 6th for a 6-1 win over the Rafters.

It may seem like all Christopher Bostick, all the time, but when he’s the only National to appear in the game…

Bostick once again batted second and played second base. At the plate, he was 0-for-2 two with two walks drawn and stole a base, his sixth of the fall. In the field (pictured), he had a putout and three assists, including the pivot on a 6-4-3 double play.

The 2015 AFL season concludes for the Salt River Rafters with an afternoon game against the AFL East champion Scottsdale Scorpions.

Nov 182015
 

Christopher-Bostick-11-18-1Salt River scored twice in the 1st and held on to the lead for a 4-2 win over Mesa to stave off elimination.

Two Nationals appeared in the game.

John Simms got the start and went three innings, allowing one run on four hits and a walk while striking out two. He threw 45 pitches, 33 for strikes. He was credited with the win, his fourth in five starts for Salt River, and has posted an ERA of 1.88 and a WHIP of 1.21.

Christopher Bostick had another strong game. Batting second and playing 2B, the 22-y.o. walked, doubled, and homered in four plate appearances. In 19 games this fall, he’s posted a line of .275/.324/.565 with four HR’s, five SB’s, and 12 RBI.

The two teams switch venues for this afternoon’s game. Scottsdale, which must lose for Salt River to have a shot at the title game, hosts Peoria tonight. The Rafters and Scorpions close out the fall season with a game tomorrow afternoon.

Nov 172015
 

For the second time this fall, inclement weather canceled a game for the Salt River Rafters. Meanwhile, the Surprise Saguaros beat the Scottsdale Scorpions to clinch a spot in Saturday’s AFL Title game, which could be a rematch of yesteray’s game unless Scottsdale continues to lose and Salt River starts to win. The Scorpions and Rafters play each other on Thursday.

John Simms is the listed starter for Salt River for this afternoon’s game against Mesa.

Nov 152015
 

Christopher-Bostick-11-14-1After battling back from 5-1 down to tie it in the bottom of the 9th, the Rafters coughed up the lead in the 10th and couldn’t respond for a 6-5 loss in extra innings.

Christopher Bostick (pictured) was the only Nationals player to appear in the game. As per usual, the 22-year-old batted second and played 2B for Salt River. He was 1-for-5 with a double and three strikeouts at the plate and on defense he had a putout, an error, and two assists.

Salt River has an off day today before entering the final week of the Arizona Fall League. They have four games left and train Scottsdale by two, with a tragic number of three.

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FREE AGENTS, REDUX
Last week, BA released its list of the 2016 minor-league free agents, a day after noting that player-coach Andruth Ramirez, RHP Scott McGregor, and UT Jose Lozada had re-signed. Without further ado, the rest of the former Nationals:

RHP – Rob Gilliam, Jeff Howell, Connor Overton, Kevin Perez, and Sam Runion
LHP – Matt Purke
C – Brian Jeroloman, Steven Lerud
IF – Mario Lisson, Scott Sizemore, Josh Johnson
OF – Darin Mastroianni, Derrick Robinson

Obviously, the the most notable name among those is Matt Purke, who the Nationals gambled would be healthy after being beaten like a rented mule by TCU in his freshman year, and never regained that promise. Otherwise, it’s the usual suspects in terms of minor-league veterans who’ve been serving as organizational soldiers.

Nov 142015
 

Kieboom-HR-11-13-15Salt River scored four times with two out in the top of the 1st, capped off by an Earl Weaver special by Spencer Kieboom (pictured) en route to a 5-3 win over Surprise.

Kieboom was one of three Nationals to see game action yesterday afternoon. The 24-year-old batted sixth and caught, going 1-for-4 overall with a run, a HR, and three RBI. Defensively, he threw out one of two baserunners attempting to steal and finished with the two assists and seven putouts (all by way of the K).

Drew Ward was the Rafters’ DH and reached base twice via the base-on-balls but was 0-for-2 otherwise.

Dakota Bacus also appeared in the game, getting the last out for Salt River in the 6th and stranding two runners. In the 7th, he sandwiched a balk between two balks before being lifted but was bailed out when his successor, Kyle Regnault, got two groundballs and a whiff to stifle the would-be rally.

The Scorpions lost their second straight but still lead the Rafters by two games with five left to play. Tonight, Salt River hosts Surprise in the AFL’s 2015 Military Appreciation Game.

Nov 132015
 

Drew-Ward-AFL-11-12-15The Rafters rallied from 6-1 down to tie at 6-6 but the ‘pen imploded as they lost 12-7 to the Desert Dogs.

Two pitchers and two position players got into last night’s game.

Christopher Bostick batted second and played 2B and had another strong offensive game, going 3-for-5 with a triple, a run scored, and a stolen base. Densively, he had two assists including the pivot on a 5-4-3 DP.

Drew Ward batted ninth and ended a six-game hitless streak with a double (pictured above). It was his third hit of the fall. He also took a walk (his eighth in ten games). Defensively, he had three assist, started the aforementioned double play, but also committed his third error.

Abel De Los Santos took the loss with two runs allowed (one earned) on two hits and two walks over an inning and 2/3rds. He threw 34 pitches, 17 for strikes and struck out two.

Nick Lee finished the game, tossing three and a 1/3rd innings with three runs allowed (two earned) on five hits, including a home run. He walked one, struck out three, hit a batter, and uncorked a wild pitch. He threw 66 pitches (seven less than the Salt River SP), 37 of which were strikes.

Salt River’s tragic number is now four. They face off this afternoon against AFL West-leading Surprise, then will host the Military Appreciation game tomorrow night (also against Surprise).

Nov 122015
 

He-Missed-The-Tag-11-11-15
Salt River left the bases loaded in the 8th as they were unable to dig themselves out of an early 3-0 hole and fell to Peoria, 6-5.

For the second straight game, three Nationals farmhands saw game action:

  • Spencer Kieboom missed the tag and was 0-for-4 with a walk as the Rafters catcher. He batted fifth and struck out twice.
  • Christopher Bostick batted eighth and played 2B. He also struck out twice but went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored.
  • Wirkin “For The Weekend” Estevez got hit hard again, this time giving up three runs in four hits in his one inning of work. He walked none and struck out one.

The loss knocks Salt River back to three games behind Scottsdale, which won its sixth straight. The Rafters stay home today and will host the Desert Dogs tonight.

Nov 112015
 

John-Simms-AFL-11-10-15
Salt River snapped a 1-1 tie with a run in the 8th and this time the bullpen held the lead for a 2-1 win over Peoria, stopping a three-game slide.

Three Nationals appeared in the game.

  • John Simms started and gave up a single run on a home run (again) and four hits total over five innings. He walked one and struck out four while throwing 71 pitches, 47 for strikes.
  • Dakota Bacus pitched the bottom of the 8th and set the side down in order on a groundout, popout, and a lineout. He threw 12 pitches, eight for strikes and earned his second hold this fall.
  • Drew Ward was the DH and went 0-for-2 with a walk, his seventh in nine games, which lowered his BA to .087 but improved his OBP to .290

The Rafters remain two games behind the Scorpions with eight games to play. Tonight, Salt River plays host to Peoria.

Nov 102015
 

Bostick-Keister-11-9-15Salt River blew a 5-1 lead in the 8th and couldn’t hold on to an 8-6 lead in the 11th as they fell 10-8 to Scottsdale for the second straight game.

Christopher Bostick (pictured) smacked a three-run homer in the top of the 8th to break open the until-then 2-1 game. It was his sole hit of the game, in which he batted seventh and played 2B. Defensively, he had one putout and two assists.

Spencer Kieboom got the start as the Rafters DH and went 0-for-2 with a walk and was hit by a pitch before being lifted for a pinch-runner with one out in the 8th. Bostick’s home run came immediately thereafter.

No other Nationals appeared in the game.

The loss drops Salt River to 12-9, two games behind Scottsdale in the AFL East. They’ll travel to Peoria today for another afternoon game, in which John Simms is listed as the probable starter.

Nov 082015
 

De-Los-Santos-at-AFL-Fall-S
Last night was the AFL Fall Stars Game, which saw the West defeat the East, 8-3. Surprise: Abel De Los Santos (pictured above) did appear. Not a surprise: He was touched for a run on two hits and was the losing pitcher.

For those wondering, winter league updates might not be a staple post this offseason given how few Nats farmhands are playing. Nevertheless, here’s a quick rundown on the non-AFL guys:

  • Paolo Espino – VWL        1-2, 4.50ERA, 1.46WHIP; 26IP, 27H, 16R, 13ER, 11BB, 22K, 3HR
  • Reegie Corona – VWL    .157/.271/.216, 0HR, 2RBI, 1SB in 15G, 51AB
  • Brian Goodwin – VWL     .222/.300/.389, 1HR, 6RBI, 2SB in 9G, 36AB
  • Rafael Bautista – DWL    .415/.466/.528, 10R, 4RBI, 2SB in 15G, 53AB
  • Pedro Severino – DWL    .265/.265/.529, 2HR, 4RBI, 0SB in 11G, 34AB
  • Jose Lozada – DWL        .476/.500/.619, 0HR, 3RBI, 1SB in 6G, 21AB

Back to the AFL… second-place Salt River has ten games remaining and will rematch against first-place Scottsdale tomorrow on the road. If the rotation holds, John Simms will most likely next pitch on Wednesday.