Results tagged ‘ Austin Romine ’
Seven Prospect-related Things I Learned During The Arizona Fall League, An Inconclusive Wrap-Up on Championship Day Saturday
The first thing that should be said about how MLB.com produces its Arizona Fall League coverage is that, well, MiLB.com produces it. Yours truly is on a Minor Leagues-focused staff of about 15 editors, producers and reporters that shifts its focus to AFL action in October and November. We manage the official site of fall ball and about eight of us are the ones interviewing Saguaros or Desert Dogs or Javelinas postgame for the recaps you read with such delight. We make those calls and writes these stories from New York, about 2,500 miles east of the six participating teams and their homes, but we still have the pulse of the league and its developments.
Will all that out of the way, here are, in no particular order, seven prospects-related things I learned this fall:
1. THAT the clubs with the best prospects don’t win the most games. Nick Castellanos, Jonathan Singleton, Javier Baez, and George Springer (all ranked 48th or higher among MLB.com’s Top 100) led the Mesa Solar Sox to a league-worst 10-20 record. Who led the Peoria Javelinas to their league-best 19-13 mark? One Nate Roberts!
2. THAT Roberts, who batted .446 in 19 games, maybe, kind of, sort of deserves to be called a prospect at this point.
3. THAT, despite my speculation, Billy Hamilton, did not in fact break another league’s stolen base record this calendar year. He racked up 10 steals in 17 games, one fewer than league leader Carlos Sanchez (Reds) and 14 fewer than the all-time record.
4. THAT Hamilton, speaking of the Stolen Base King, can make a catcher (in this case, Yankees farmhand Austin Romine) say Goddamn after stealing second base on a foot-first slide — then make that same catcher just stare down at dirt after stealing third base on the catcher’s post-pitch toss back to the mound. (Fast-forward to the 00:31 mark of this video for that doozy.)
5. THAT the Yankees’ Slade Heathcott, while not nearly as fast as Hamilton, plays ball the hard-nosed, bull-headed way — the right way.
6. THAT if a Fall Leaguer is traded by his Major League organization to another Major League organization, he will switch teams almost immediately. In the case of A’s-turned-D-backs-turned-Marlins infielder Yordy Cabrera, however, he went from the A’s-affiliated Phoenix Desert Dogs straight to the Marlins-affiliated … Phoenix Desert Dogs. He didn’t even have to change ballcaps!
7. THAT, speaking of fast things, I wasn’t wrong (perhaps) to write that Heath Hembree owned the fastest fastball in the Fall League. I saw him hit a radar gun at just 90 mph in one appearance, but he appeared to be throwing much harder in the Rising Stars Showcase, no?