AFL Update: Nov. 18, 2016

andrew-stevenson-11-18-16Alas, the Desert Dogs’ three-game win streak—capped by a 3-1 win over the Javelinas—to close out the 2016 AFL campaign wasn’t enough to get them to the title game, but did secure a winning record at 17-15.

Five Nationals appeared in the season finale: two of the three position players and all three relievers.

Andrew Stevenson (pictured) led off and played CF yet again. He reached base twice with a single and a walk while going 1-for-3 with a strikeout. Defensively, he collected five putouts and fielded eight balls total.

Drew Ward followed Stevenson in the lineup and matched his boxscore line (1-for-3, BB, K). In the field, he had four assists while playing 3B.

Jake Johansen stranded two baserunners in the 6th with a strikeout to end the inning then put on two runners in the 7th before getting two out. His line – 1IP, 1H, 0R, BB, K

Nick Lee kept ’em on by inducing a flyout to finish the 7th, then got the leadoff man in the 8th for a line of ⅔IP, 0H, 0R, BB, 0K

Ryan Brinley completed the Nats reliever sequence with a flyout and strikeout to finish the 8th and a ⅓ IP, 0H, 0R, BB, K line.

It was the fourth, third, and first holds respectively for Johansen, Lee, and Brinley.

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Sad-SpicklesWith the completion of the AFL schedule, the 2016 minor-league season (the seventh this site has covered) is in the books. A shoutout to Lee Magenheim, our photographer in Arizona, who’s provided the AFL pictures for the past FIVE seasons.

AFL Update: Nov. 17, 2016

img_0067Glendale scored in each of the first four innings en route to a 10-0 shutout of Mesa. Combined with a loss by the Saguaros, the Desert Dogs remain alive in the hunt for the AFL West title.

All three Nats position players saw game action again:

  • Andrew Stevenson led off and played left field, reaching base three times with two walks and a single, and scoring three runs. He also stole two bases.
  • Drew Ward (pictured) got the start at first base and drove in two, going 1-for-5 with a walk and two RBI.
  • Osvaldo Abreu handled shortstop on defense and singled and doubled in a 2-for-5 effort that pushed his fall average to .267.

The AFL regular season concludes today. Glendale must win and Surprise must lose for the Desert Dogs to play in Saturday’s AFL Title game.

AFL Update: Nov. 16, 2016

img_0061Glendale got on the board first for a single run in the 1st and a quintet of pitchers, led by Austin Voth, (pictured) made it stand up for a 1-0 victory over Surprise.

Voth, who was named the AFL Pitcher of the week, tossed five scoreless innings and allowed just two hits and three walks to win for the third time this fall.

Nick Lee was the first man out of the Desert Dogs bullpen and struck out the side on 16 pitches (10 for strikes) in the 6th.

Andrew Stevenson scored the game’s lone run after leading off with a single, taking second on a wild pitch, and scoring on an RBI single by Nick Tanielu.

Osvaldo Abreu also appeared in the game but went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.

The win returns the Desert Dogs to .500 (15-15) and into 2nd place in the AFL West. Glendale visits Mesa this afternoon, then Peoria tomorrow.

AFL Update: Nov. 15, 2016

img_0058Mesa broke open a 1-1 game with a four-spot in the 3rd and poured it on with multiple big innings in a 13-5 romp over Glendale.

Two Nationals appeared in yesterday’s game.

Andrew Stevenson (pictured) remains red-hot as he reached base four times with a walk, two singles, and a triple while batting leadoff and playing centerfield. He had two putouts on defense and fielded five balls total.

Drew Ward started at 3B and batted sixth. He walked twice and scored a run while going 0-for-3.

The loss lowered the Desert Dogs’ elimination number to one. They visit the first-place Saguaros this afternoon, with Austin Voth scheduled to make his final start.

AFL Update: Nov. 13, 2016

ryan-brinley-11-13-16Glendale twice rallied back from one-run deficits to edge Scottsdale, 4-3.

Drew Ward was the Desert Dogs’ designated hitter and batted third. He went 1-for-4 with a double, his sixth of the fall season.

Two Nationals relievers saw game action. Jake Johansen dispatched the final two batters of the 8th inning to earn his third hold while Ryan Brinley (pictured) garnered the save with a 1-2-3, six-pitch 9th to notch his first save for Glendale.

The Desert Dogs remain 1½ games behind Surprise with four games left to play. Glendale hosts Mesa tomorrow, then hit the road for games against Surprise, Mesa, and Peoria.

PROGRAMMING NOTE
Tomorrow morning I go under the knife to fix what put me out of action in late August. Should be out of the hospital by the end of the week, but have no idea when I’ll be next be able to post. It’ll depend on the painkillers 😉

AFL/Offseason Update: Nov. 12, 2016

The Desert Dogs got two-spots in the 5th and 7th innings to overcome a 2-1 deficit and beat the Scorpions, 5-2. Combined with a Peoria loss, Glendale returned to within 1½ games of the AFL West lead.

Osvaldo Abreu got the start at shortstop and batted ninth. He reached base three times with a single and two walks and stole his fourth base. Defensively, he committed his fourth error while collecting five putouts and two assists, including a double play.

Nick Lee made his eighth fall appearance and got four outs in relief, allowing one hit, no runs, no walks, and struck out one. In ten innings, he’s allowed four runs (two earned) on ten hits and nine walks while striking out eleven.

The two teams switch venues this afternoon to finish out the last full week of the 2016 AFL season.

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FREE AGENTS
On Tuesday, minor-league free agency began, which saw 20 guys become former Nationals farmhands, some for the first time:
RHP – Erik Davis, Justin DeFratus, Paolo Espino, Michael Brady, Mitch Lively, Sam Runion, Boone Whiting
LHP – Aaron Laffey
C – Brian Jeroloman, Devin Ivany, Andruth Ramirez, Adderling Ruiz
IF – Steve Lombardozzi, Jose Lozada, Jason Martinson
OF – Matt den Dekker, Kevin Keyes, Narciso Mesa, Drew Vettleson

It’s worth noting that Ivany and Ramirez were player-coaches, so their free agency may merely be a formality. As aforementioned, for a few of these guys it’s their chance to hook on elsewhere and get a second chance (or an easier path) to The Show.

WINTER LEAGUES

To me it seems like a smaller group than usual, but let’s a take a quick peek at how some of the non-AFL guys are doing:

DWL – Rafael Bautista, .276/.338/.293, 5SB, 6BB, 8RBI in 15G
DWL – Jose Marmolejos, .231/.268/.410, 1HR, 2BB, 8RBI in 13G
DWL – Raudy Read, 1-for-2 in 2G
DWL – Wander Suero, 1IP, 1H, 0R, 1BB, 2K in 1G
DWL – Philips Valdez, 0-0, 0SV, 0.00ERA, 1.07WHIP in 3G
MWL – Matt Skole, .237/.367/.320, 2HR, 7RBI, 24K in 27G
PWL – Neftali Soto, .442/.444/.674, HR, BB, SF, 5RBI in 10G
VWL – Aldrem Corredor, .133/.235/.133, 2SB, 2BB, in 9G
VWL – David Ramos, 1-0, 0SV, 2.45ERA, 1.23WHIP in 6G/7⅓ IP
VWL – Greg Ross, 3-1, 2.25ERA, 1.16WHIP in 7GS/32IP

AFL Update: Nov. 11, 2016

ryan-brinley-11-11-16Glendale fell behind 3-0 after the first three outs and couldn’t catch Surprise as they lost another one, 3-1.

Andrew Stevenson and Drew Ward were tablesetters in the Desert Dog lineup, playing LF and 3B respectively. Stevenson went 1-for-4 at the plate with two strikeouts and had four putouts on defense. Ward was 1-for-3 with four assists and no errors.

Ryan Brinley (pictured) tossed a 1-2-3 eighth inning with two groundouts and a strikeout on just nine pitches, seven for strikes.

The loss lowered the Desert Dogs’ tragic number to four games with six games remaining in the fall campaign, but just one vs. the first-place Javelinas (next Thursday). Glendale visits Scottsdale tonight before switching venues tomorrow afternoon.

AFL Update: Nov. 9, 2016

drew-ward-11-9-16The Desert Dogs took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the 1st only to see it vanish in the bottom half of the inning as the Scorpions stung them for 10 runs before an out was made in a 13-3 smackdown yesterday afternoon.

Drew Ward (pictured) doubled and scored the third Glendale run in the 8th. He finished the game at 1-for-4 with a strikeout and an assist on defense.

Andrew Stevenson lost his hit streak but extended his on-base streak to ten games with a walk as he went 0-for-4. He also stole two bases.

Jake Johansen came on in the 1st with the bases loaded and nobody out and let in all three runs and two of his own before getting three outs. He pitched a scoreless 2nd to finish with a line of two runs allowed on four hits and a walk and strikeout over two innings.

Glendale visits Salt River this afternoon with Austin Voth slated to make the start. The Desert Dogs remain 1½ games behind the Javelinas in the AFL West, but their elimination number was lowered to six.

AFL Update: Nov. 8, 2016

andrew-stevenson-11-8-16Glendale and Andrew Stevenson both remain red hot as the former won its fifth straight while latter got five hits in a 15-3 romp over Peoria.

Stevenson singled four times and homered once while driving in two. He scored three times while going 5-for-6 from the leadoff spot, which extended his hit streak to nine games. He did get caught stealing for the second time.

Osvaldo Abreu batted ninth and played shortstop. He struck out three times, but reached base twice with a walk and a single.

Nick Lee also appeared in the game, working around his ninth walk of the fall while striking out nos. nine and ten in a scoreless 6th inning.

The win improves the Desert Dogs to 11-12 and tightens the AFL West race to 1½ games between first and third place. Glendale visits Scottsdale this afternoon with a chance to get back to .500 for the first time since the Desert Dogs were 2-2 after four games.

AFL Update: Nov. 6, 2016

ryan-brinley-11-6-16The AFL West put up four-spots in back-to-back innings as they cruised to a 12-4 win the 2016 Fall Stars Game.

Both Nationals representatives appeared in the game. Drew Ward started at 3B for the AFL West and batted cleanup while Ryan Brinley (pictured) appeared in the 9th.

Ward got the scoring with an RBI single in the 3rd and went 1-for-5 with a run scored for the game. He had one putout and one assist on defense.

Brinley gave up a home run to the first batter he faced, then walked the second batter before he was lifted for another reliever. He threw nine pitches, but just three were strikes.

The AFL resumes play tomorrow with the Desert Dogs rematching against the Javelinas. Glendale is on a four-game win streak while Peoria has dropped its last two. Two and a half games now separate the two teams as they enter the last full week of play.