First Week in the Fall League
The first week in the 2008 Arizona Fall League is officially in the books and after five games, our team is in first place in the American Division with a 5-0 record. Our success can be attributed to both quality pitching and good hitting. We enter Week 2 with the best team ERA (2.80), the most runs scored (40) and are second in batting average. I know it takes a while for a group of players from different organizations to learn to play together, but we have really come together in a short amount of time and I am already very excited about this team.
We had our first game on Tuesday night at Scottsdale Stadium against the Scottsdale Scorpions. We won the game 9-3 and I hit a solo home run in my first AB – definitely nice that are team started with a win and I was happy to get the first home run under my belt. I played three games in our first week and felt good about my contribution to our team’s early success. It is a little different not playing every day, but it is understandable with the amount of talent that we have on our roster. Even on days when I know that I am not going to play, I come to the ballpark with the same mentality. Each day is an opportunity to get better and I approach my work – batting practice, infield, etc. – with the same mentality regardless of whether my name is penciled into the lineup.
We have completed one week of games out here, but I can definitely say that I am a big fan of the Arizona Fall League. There is a tremendous amount of talent out here and I am grateful for the opportunity play the game against such quality competition. I was somewhat familiar with the AFL because one of my older brothers, Royce, played for the Scottsdale Scorpions in 2004 when he was a member of the Houston Astros organization. He has given me valuable insight on what to expect and tips on how to go about my business so that I can maximize this experience. I was amazed when he told me that his team in 2004 included players such as Russell Martin (C/LAD), James Loney (1B/LAD), Carlos Quentin (OF/CWS), Conor Jackson (IF-OF/ARI), Willy Tavares (OF/COL) and Rickie Weeks (2B/MIL). I will write more about the positive impact Royce and the rest of my family have had on my baseball career in a later blog entry.
Thanks again for your support and I appreciate your comments.