One benefit of playing in the Arizona Fall League is that players have a chance to raise their profile while competing with some of the most exciting prospects in the game. Scouts flock to the Scottsdale Scorpions games with excitement to watch the likes of the Mets’ Peter Alonso, the Astros’ Forrest Whitley, or the Reds’ Taylor Trammell, which gives some of their more modestly heralded (if heralded at all) teammates a chance to shine in front of the gathered industry.
Houston’s Abramaham Toro-Hernandez is one example this year of a player who is really taking advantage of that higher exposure. Posting a 1.222 OPS over the first two weeks of league play, the 21 year old 3B is no doubt, starting to rise up the pref lists of MLB organizations who may be thinking about trade possibilities with the loaded Astros.
Unfortunately, in our Giants-centric corner of the world, that hasn’t really been the case with their contingent of hitters. Week 2 saw the Giants’ position player representatives sink to the bottom of the Scottsdale Scorpions’ depth chart, and... well... to the bottom of the stat sheets as well.
C.J. Hinojosa: 3 G, 0 for 8, 1 walks, 1 K, 1 Error. Season totals: .105/.150/.105
Matt Winn: 3 G, 1 for 9, 2 walks, 4 Ks, 1 RBI. Season totals: .133/.316/.133
Heath Quinn: 3 G, 1 for 5, 0 walk, 1 K, 0 XBH. Season totals: .133/.188/.133
Not a great week for our boys! Collectively, there’s been an issue with making contact as the three have now struck out 19 times in 49 At Bats, and in Quinn and Hinojosa’s cases that’s been offset by just 1 walk each. Not hard to see why the pair started just one game each during the week.
Garrett Williams: 1 GS, 4 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K. Season Totals: 1.50 ERA
Melvin Adon: 2 G, 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 Ks. Season Total: 1.80 ERA
Chase Johnson: 2 G, 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 2 Ks. Season Totals: 9.00 ERA
Sam Wolff: 3 G, 3 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 Ks. Season Totals: 0.00 ERA
Things look better on the pitching side of the equation, where the four Giants’ prospect arms collectively combined to throw 10.2 innings without allowing an earned run (Chase Johnson did have one unearned run on his ledger).
Garrett Williams and Melvin Adon combined to throw 6 shutout innings in one Scottsdale victory. Williams’ effort was notable for going 4 innings without a walk. That’s something he managed to do just once in the 2018 season — and that came in his season debut! That’s right — the last time Williams started a game and didn’t walk a batter came all the way back on April 9 of this year.
Still, it was once again Melvin Adon, of the Giants’ group who caught the assembled scouting attention, with a performance in which he struck out four of the seven batters he faced (with only one batter reaching against him on a fielding error from Hinojosa).
Best I've seen Melvin Adon in a while, with lots of 98s & 99s and at least one 100. Got swing-and-miss with 88-90 hard slider. #Giants #afl18— Bill Mitchell (@billazbbphotog) October 18, 2018
#Giants Adon 98-102 in Surprise. Hitters on it when up.— John T Eshleman (@2080_John) October 20, 2018
I wouldn’t mind watching an Adon/Black/Moronta group of flame throwers at the end of games. Which is really all of the motivation I need to repost one of my favorite highlights we’ve seen on Minor Lines in a many years:
.@GreenJackets Melvin Adon with a play of the year candidate! pic.twitter.com/eln7oX3KNM— Kevin Faigle (@kevinfaiglewrdw) July 21, 2017
Sam Wolff and Chase Johnson both continue to recover from arm surgery and will attempt to insert their names into bullpen competitions in the coming year as well. Wolff has been particularly efficient in his AFL appearances, allowing just two batters to reach safely thus far in four innings.
Winter Leagues have also started action this week, and while I won’t be going into detail on the various Giants’ participating, I will provide you this handy little link where you can keep track of all Giants’ offseason action on one page. Abiatal Avelino has gotten a quick start out of the gate in the Dominican Winter league, posting a four-hit effort in his second game and going 5 for 11 overall in his first three games with two walks and two SBs. Keep it up Abi!
And the last note of major importance for the Giants’ development group is, of course, that it needs a new leader. Not exactly BREAKING: but...
David Bell has been named the new manager of the Cincinnati Reds. He will be introduced at a press conference on Monday at 11:00 a.m. pic.twitter.com/BdIlLCGKMG— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) October 21, 2018
After just one year as the Vice President of Player Development with the Giants, David Bell is heading back to a major league bench. Perhaps it’s just as well — allowing the new VP of Baseball Operations (whomever he or she turns out to be) to bring in more of their own overall team, but I would have liked to see what Bell could have done given a little more time. We wish him luck on the new gig, though!