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They Might Be Giants

SF Giants Minor Lines 8/28/19: AZL Orange Falls in the Playoffs

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The season ends with a scary collision to two stars

minor lines

Today, almost the entire Arizona Fall League rosters were made public.

Not a lot of surprises in this list. The AFL rosters, by rule, must consist of mostly Double-A or higher players, which may be one of the reasons that both Ramos and Bart got their late-season promotions to Double-A, allowing the Giants to put Tristan Beck and Frank Rubio, on the roster.

One roster spot, a pitcher, is still yet to be named from the Giants (and one each from every other team that joins SF with the Scottsdale Scorpions).

Highlights: Richmond swept a double-header; Tristan Beck had six scoreless innings for San Jose.


Sacramento was defeated by Reno (Diamondbacks), 5-1

Come on, Sacramento, this is getting ridiculous.

Yet again, the River Cats were unable to beat Reno and clinch their playoff spot. Justin Haley looked like he was having a start that would do the job, going seven scoreless innings and holding onto a narrow 1-run lead, but the 8th inning sunk them. Haley gave up home runs to the first and third batters he faced in the 8th inning, giving Reno a 2-1 lead. Sam Wolff replaced Haley, and gave up a double, a walk, and a home run and Reno held a 5-1 lead.

The start was Haley’s fourth of the season. Haley has 19 strikeouts and six walks in 22 innings, but has 22 hits allowed, six of which are home runs. Sam Wolff gave up his firs runs since coming to Sacramento, in four appearances.

Mike Gerber was 1-for-4 with his 39th double of the season. Gerber broke a 3-game hitless streak with the hit, but still has a .310/.372/.574 batting line on the season as a River Cat. Aramis Garcia also picked up his 20th double. The catcher has a .272/.345/.485 batting line on the season in 87 games at Triple-A.

Playoff Position: *sigh* Still First Place, 5.0 games ahead of Reno. Magic Number of 1 with five games left


Richmond swept a doubleheader against Erie (Tigers)

Game 1: Richmond 6, Erie 4 (7 Innings)

Game 2: Richmond 4, Erie 3 (7 Innings)

As the season comes to an end, Richmond is putting together some nice wins to round out the season.

Jalen Miller had a big day across the doubleheader. He had a home run in Game 1, and a double in Game 2. The home run was his 11th of the season, close to the season-high 14 he had in 2018 with San Jose. Miller is batting .216/.284/.332 this season. Johneshwy Fargas was 3-for-6 with a walk across the two games, raising his line to .250/.326/.338, and picked up his 46th stolen base on the season. The 46 steals lead the league, 11 ahead of second place Jared Oliva of Altoona (Pirates).

Top prospect Joey Bart was 1-for-7 with a walk on the day. After his big day on Tuesday, Bart’s batting average dropped to .246 and a .306 OBP and a .400 slugging percentage. Heliot Ramos was 1-for-6 with a bases-loaded walk and his sixth double at Richmond. He’s batting .213/.306/.373 for the Squirrels.

Caleb Baragar had the Game 1 start, allowing a pair of earned runs across five innings. Baragar has a 3.60 ERA across 21 appearances in Richmond. In game 2, Alfred Gutierrez allowed three runs but took the win. Tyler Cyr took the save in Game 1, his fifth of the season, and 26th career save with Richmond. That gives him the #2 spot in Flying Squirrel history. Gutierrez has allowed three runs in each of his last two starts, after allowing just one run in his previous three appearances combined. Rodolfo Martinez finished off the game with three strikeouts in 1.2 innings. He has a 6.19 ERA in 13 games at Richmond, in his third go-around at the level.

Playoff Position: Out.


San Jose defeated Visalia (Diamondbacks), 6-0

San Jose now has a 7-game winning streak, their longest since 2015 and coming at the right time for the playoff race.

Tristan Beck had his second shutout start in a row on the same day it was announced he’d be headed to the Arizona Fall League. Beck struck out six while allowing four hits and four walks in six innings. As a Giant, Beck has a 2.51 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP, with 31 strikeouts and 11 walks in 28.2 innings.

Shane Matheny’s hot streak continues, as he has his fourth straight game with multiple hits. Matheny is 11-for-18 (.611) over that span, with two home runs. The two home runs are Matheny’s only extra-base hits in nine games at San Jose. Diego Rincones collected two hits himself, increasing his San Jose batting line to .259/.386/.379.

In relief, Jesus Tona pitched a scoreless 1.1 innings. Unbelievably, out of 13 appearances in San Jose, it’s only the fourth appearance of an inning or more without allowing any earned runs. He has a 5.51 ERA in San Jose.

Playoff Position: First place in the Wild Card, 1.5 games ahead of Modesto with five games left.


Augusta defeated Greenville (Red Sox), 5-2

Tyler Fitzgerald had another strong game for Augusta, leading the way for the GreenJackets as they keep pace in the division race. Fitzgerald is 9-for-17 over his last four games, with three doubles, and his double was the only extra-base hit for the GreenJackets. The 4th round pick from this season’s draft is now batting .278/.361/.333 across 14 games with Augusta.

Franklin Labour picked up two more hits as well, and is batting .313 over his past nine games. Labour has 33 games against seven walks in 26 games at Augusta this season. Ricardo Genoves also had a pair of hits, and now has a .321/.390/.509 batting line in 16 games in Augusta.

Trenton Toplikar had a season-high eight strikeouts powering the win. His 3.02 ERA is as low as it’s been all season in Augusta, and he has 35 strikeouts against 15 walks in 50.2 innings.

Playoff Position: Tied for first place with Asheville, with five games left.


Salem-Keizer defeated Eugene (Cubs), 6-5

A bit of roster business to start things off in Oregon. Now that the Volcanoes are back from Vancouver and the AZL is over, Jairo Pomares, Deiyerbert Bolivar, Prelander Berroa and Yorlis Rodriguez all returned to Salem-Keizer after they went to the AZL on 8/23.

With the reinforcements, the Volcanoes outlasted Eugene, despite no standout offensive players. Jeff Houghtby picked up his 16th double of the season, and added two walks in the number two spot in the lineup. Houghtby has walked 26 times against striking out 47 times in 53 games this season for the Volcanoes. He has a batting line of .245/.351/.401. Carter Aldrete had the other extra-base hit, his fifth double in his 25th game at the level.

Travis Perry was on the mound, allowing four runs for the second straight game. Perry has a 3.82 ERA this season, but has struggled in August to a 5.32 ERA in five starts. Bolivar made an appearance in relief, allowing his second run with the Volcanoes after allowing one run in three innings while with the AZL. His ERA overall this season is 1.19 between the two levels.

Playoff Position: In as first half division champions.


AZL Orange lost to the AZL Rangers, 2-1

And so…that ended quickly.

The Giants suffered a scary moment in the second inning, and never really recovered. And, they’re out of the playoffs.

The good news is that Matos and Williams both walked off the field under their own power. The bad news was that it took two of the top players out of the Orange lineup, and they never got back on track.

The only extra-base hit for the Giants was Jose Layer, whose double came along with a walk. But the only run came as Rodolfo Bone singled and took third on an Edison Mora, and scoring on Omar Medina’s sacrifice fly as he replaced Matos in the game.

Nick Avila, who had a 1.11 ERA in the regular season, made the start for Orange. But he gave up three hits in the second inning, leading to two runs that would be the winning runs for the Rangers. Solomon Bates worked a scoreless inning, technically still on a rehab assignment. Luis Moreno worked four scoreless innings to keep the game close, but the offense never recovered.

So, the 2019 AZL Giants Orange go down with the 2007 New England Patriots and the 2015-16 Golden State Warriors, setting a league record for wins and yet falling short of a championship. I’m sure the 2019 AZL Giants Orange will be as well remembered as all of those teams.


Today’s Scheduled Starters

Sacramento (Chase Johnson) vs. Reno (Riley Smith), 7:05 pm PDT

Richmond (Ryan Halstead) at Erie (Anthony Castro), 7:05 pm EDT

San Jose (TBA) vs. Visalia (TBA), 12:30 pm PDT

Augusta (Norwith Gudino) at Greenville (Hunter Haworth), 7:05 pm EDT

Salem-Keizer (TBA) at Eugene (TBA), 7:05 pm PDT

The playoffs are over in the AZL, but can Sacramento clinch theirs? Can San Jose and Augusta keep pace? It’s an exciting final week for the system!