Alen Hanson 2

AFL Recap: Tough Day at Plate For Hanson, Benedict Strong in Relief

After playing two night games to open the season against Salt River, the Scottsdale Scorpions moved on to Peoria for a day game Thursday. Scottsdale dropped their second straight game, losing 6-3 today. arizona_fall_league_logo

Alen Hanson was the only Pittsburgh Pirates player in the starting lineup. He batted lead-off and played shortstop. Hanson struck out in his first AB, then reached on an error in the second inning. He would steal second and third, giving him three stolen bases on the young season. In the fourth, Hanson went down swinging again. In his fourth at-bat, he flew out to left field. In the ninth, Hanson went down swinging for the third time, this time on three pitches. After two games, he is 2-for-9, with two singles. Hanson handled all four chances in the field cleanly.

Matt Benedict came on to pitch the third inning for Scottsdale. He retired the side in order, getting two ground outs and a soft liner to center field. Benedict had an easy fourth inning, getting a strikeout, a fly out and a ground out. In the fifth, he made it eight outs in a row, before giving up a double on a grounder down the first base line. That was the end of his day. He threw a total of 37 pitches, 25 went for strikes.

Peoria has Pitch F/X available, unlike most of the other parks in the AFL. Benedict threw 20 fastballs, 12 change-ups and five sliders. He was sitting 88-91 MPH with the fastball, topping out at 92 twice. His off-speed pitches were 83-85 MPH. You can check out the full chart at mlbfarm.com.

Zack Thornton came on in relief of Benedict and finished off the fifth inning with a groundball to second base. He had an easy sixth, though one batter reached via error, which was charged to Thornton. In the seventh, he ran into trouble, allowing two runs on three hits and another error, again from himself. Both runs ended up being earned.

Thornton had nearly an identical pitch count as Benedict, throwing one more pitch and the same number of strikes. Thornton threw 23 fastballs, all in the 88-90 MPH range. He mixed in a change-up in the low-80’s and a curveball in the 77-79 MPH range. His full chart can be viewed here.

Enjoy this story? Pirates Prospects will be switching to a subscription site on 4/13, so that we can continue bringing you the best Pirates coverage there is. For a very small monthly price, you can continue getting articles like this, along with coverage from every minor league city. Get more information here, and subscribe today!

Share This Article

John Dreker

John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.

AFL Recap: Dickerson Reaches Base Three Times in Loss

Next Story »

AFL Recap: Thirty Strikeouts in Scottsdale’s 5-1 Loss to Glendale

  • stickyweb

    Is it my imagination or are runners stealing bases at will in this league? Is this normal? Do they just not emphasize the pitchers to hold the runners? Is it because of battery mates not being used to each other?

    • John Dreker

      There has been a lot so far, runners are 27-for-33 in stolen base attempts in 9 games so far. Too early to really come up with a pattern, but that is a similar amount of attempts per game compared to last year(over the full seasons), with a slightly higher success rate. I’m sure the % of caught stealing will go up as catchers and pitchers work together more. I’ve also noticed over the years, that guys who run, like to show that skill right away at a new level, so they run less as the season goes along. That might not hold true for the AFL since every game in like a highly scouted minor league all-star game and the season is only 31 games long. Players like to stand out in these games, which is tough to do daily with so much talent.

      • stickyweb

        Thanks John. Good point about players showcasing their talent, I hadn’t thought of that.

Latest Analysis

  • Keller Supak Hinsz

    Even With the New Draft Rules, the Pirates Are Still Loading Up on Projectable Pitchers

    1 day ago

    From 2008-2011, the Pittsburgh Pirates spent a lot of resources on projectable pitchers out of high school. So far, this approach has led to breakout performances from ...

    Read More
  • Josh Bell made the move to first base over the off-season. (Photo credit: David Hague)

    Why Should You Care About Prospects?

    2 days ago

    Yesterday I had a shorter day than usual. The Pirates had cuts at the MLB level, and a road game. The day was shortened at Pirate City, ...

    Read More
  • Gregory Polanco

    Q&A: Trading Prospects For Rentals, Polanco Concerns, Meadows vs Appel

    3 days ago

    I missed the Q&A last week due to a common problem in Spring Training: I forgot what day it was. It was around 6:00 that I was ...

    Read More
  • Nick Kingham f

    Improving His Two-Seam Fastball will Make Nick Kingham a More Effective Pitcher

    4 days ago

    With Jameson Taillon returning from Tommy John surgery, and unlikely to make an impact at the Major League level early in the year, the top prospect to ...

    Read More
  • Arquimedes Caminero 3

    The Roster Situations That Could Impact the Makeup of the Pirates Bullpen

    6 days ago

    There are less than two weeks remaining in Spring Training, and the one area where the Pittsburgh Pirates had actual position battles is heating up. There were ...

    Read More
  • Jordan Luplow

    How the Pirates are Trying to Stay Ahead of the Curve With the New Draft Rules

    1 week ago

    The 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement brought a lot of changes to Major League Baseball. The biggest change for the Pittsburgh Pirates came in the draft. From 2008-2011, ...

    Read More
  • Alen Hanson

    The Key For Alen Hanson to Help the Pirates in the Majors This Year

    1 week ago

    When the Pittsburgh Pirates moved Alen Hanson to second base last year, part of the plan was to get him to the majors faster by putting him at ...

    Read More
  • Tyler Glasnow 2

    What the Stats Don’t Tell You About Tyler Glasnow

    1 week ago

    The stat line for Tyler Glasnow’s start at Pirate City yesterday looked great: 3 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K. The lone run ...

    Read More
  • JaCoby Jones Josh Bell

    JaCoby Jones Did Fine in the Move to Shortstop, But Needs to Cut Down on Strikeouts

    2 weeks ago

    The Pittsburgh Pirates drafted JaCoby Jones as an outfielder in the third round of the 2013 draft, then surprised everyone the following year when they moved him ...

    Read More
  • Cody Dickson is a lefty with the upside of a middle of the rotation starter. (Photo Credit: Mark Olson)

    The Mental Adjustment that Led to Cody Dickson’s Dominant 2014 Second Half

    2 weeks ago

    Trusting his stuff and not trying to do too much — that has been the key for left-handed pitcher Cody Dickson so far in his professional baseball ...

    Read More
  • Browse More Articles

    More