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Surprise Saguaros down Salt River Rafters 4-2

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A crisply played game (relatively)

Salt River Rafters v. Peoria Javelinas
Spencer Torkelson
Photo by Jill Weisleder/MLB Photos via Getty Images

Kansas City Royals prospect Zack Haak took a no hitter into the 4th inning for the Saguaros, and end up going 3 23 IP, giving up two walk, 1 hit, and no runs.

Garrison Bryant of the Mets matched him with 3 scoreless inning giving up just a walk and a double. Haak had the more impressive stuff though. Mixing an effective changeup and slider with a mid 90’s fastball. Bryant’s fastball never topped 90, sitting at 88-89, but he has a really good curveball that pushes 2500 spin rates and induced a lot of weak contact.

The game was scoreless through 5, but the Saguaros broke the seal with a run in the 6th off of Conor Grey, who also worked 3 innings. Two more were scored off of Rafters pitching in the 7th against Taylor Floyd.

The Saguaros took until the bottom of the 8th to get their two runs to pull within 3-2 when Edury Demurias walked the first two batters and then gave up a two base hits before getting yanked. It wasn’t enough for the rafters as the Saguaros tacked on one more in the 9th.

Salt River loaded the bases in the bottom of the 9th against Eudry Manon, but with two outs Joe Grey Jr. grounded out 5-4 to end it.

The game featured just one Pitch clock called ball on Bryant in the top of the 1st, and one called strike on a batter in the bottom of the 5th for failing to get in the box. The combination of better pitching and the adherence to the pitch clock helped this game move along at a brisk pace, taking just 2:31 to play. There were 12 walks in the game, but compared to last Saturday’s 22, it felt Madduxesque.

Box Score

Rafters Roster

Saguaros Roster

Stat Cast Game Page

Dominic Canzone, Diamondbacks Prospect: He was the only D-back to get in this game, hitter or pitcher. A cursory look at the box score would show an 0-4 with 3 groundouts and 3 LOB. Bad game. But actually he had some good at bats and hit some balls hard in this game.

1st AB: He swung and missed (actually foul tip) at a center cut 94.5 MPH FB that was slightly elevated, then grounded out to 2nd, rolling over a sinker down and away.

2nd AB: 2 Outs, runners on the corners, and a lefty in from the pen to face him. He ripped a 1st pitch changeup foul down the RF line, and fell behind 1-2. He then hit a sharp 106.4 MPH liner on another changeup off the glove of the second baseman. The fielder recovered, but threw low. The first baseman layed out flat and somehow kept his foot on the bag to record the out. Tough break, should have been a hit.

3rd AB: Hit a slicing “fliner” 96 MPH off the bat and down towards the left field corner. The Left fielder got over though and got a glove on the ball, but also lost it in the sun, and it clanked off his glove and was scored a 2 base error.

4th AB: Routine ground ball out to 2nd to end the inning in the 8th

I haven’t seen him elevate many balls in the 3 games I’ve seen him, but he hits the ball hard.

Other players of note:

Spencer Torkelson, the ASU standout and Detroit Tigers 1-1 pick in 2020 has been having a great Fall league so far, coming in batting .474. He worked an impressive 10 pitch walk in the 2nd, laying off some tough pitches and fouling off a host of others. He advanced to 3rd on a base hit, but then hurt himself sliding back into the bag on a catcher pickoff attempt. He jammed his ankle, and limped off the field but was later seen walking to the clubhouse with less of a limp and appears to be day to day.

Local boy Sam Huff, who went to Arcadia High School had three impressive singles, 107, 109, 107 MPH off the bat. He also drew a walk.

Joe Wiemer impressed again, very nearly making an impossible diving catch in the gap. He managed to knock the ball down and hold the runner to a single. In the 9th he hit a ball 422 feet to dead center that hit high off batters eye, just missing a game tying two run homer.

There was some nice defense elsewhere too. Brett Baty made a terrific sliding catch on the track in foul ground to snare a popup.

Besides Haack, Chavez Fernander of the Tigers had the next fastest fastball at 96 MPH.