SURPRISE, Ariz. – The Glendale Desert Dogs won 10-5 on Thursday afternoon over Surprise, giving them a 7-7 record, as they near the halfway point of the Arizona Fall League season. Tim Williams will have more later from this game, but for now, here is a quick recap and some video. There was no AFL recap from Wednesday because no one from the Pittsburgh Pirates took part in the game. Glendale lost that game 6-4 to Surprise. On Thursday afternoon, Kevin Kramer, Mitchell Tolman and Logan Hill were all in the lineup, while Brandon Waddell pitched in relief.
Mitchell Tolman batted lead-off and played third base for the second time in the AFL. He had a tough day at the plate, going 0-for-5 with three strikeouts. On defense, he started a 5-3 double play on a grounder in the second inning, fielded a pop out in the fifth and handled two grounders in the seventh.
Kevin Kramer hit third and went 2-for-5 with a home run, single and two strikeouts. The homer was his second of the AFL season (see video). He is hitting .333/.448/.625 through seven games.
Logan Hill went 1-for-4 with a single, walk and a run scored. Here’s video of his single.
Brandon Waddell came in for the sixth inning and retired the side in order on two fly balls and a strikeout. He stayed out for the seventh and allowed two line drive singles, but kept the opposition off of the board with two grounders and a pop out to shortstop. He threw 19 of his 23 pitches for strikes. Waddell has now thrown five shutout innings over his last three appearances. He has one walk and nine strikeouts in eight innings this fall.
More from this game later. – John Dreker
UPDATE: Recap from Tim…
I’ve got a few hours before my red eye flight takes off, so some quick thoughts and additional video.
Kramer was obviously the highlight today, hitting the homer above for his second of the AFL season, and second in his last two games. This one was an opposite field shot that left little doubt, ending up in the opposing bullpen. His power comes easy for a middle infielder, and helps to make him one of the best bats the Pirates have at the middle infield spots. He didn’t get many opportunities at shortstop today, but I continue to be impressed with how smooth he looks at the position.
Mitchell Tolman had a rough game at the plate, striking out three times, which he also did on Tuesday. Tolman has had an issue in A-ball of not being aggressive early in the count, leading to deeper counts. That will only lead to strikeouts in the upper levels, as he won’t see many mistakes when the pitchers are ahead.
He had a good game on defense, making a few nice plays. One of them was a 5-3 double play where he stepped on third after fielding a grounder to his right, then made the throw in time to first. Another nice grounder came in Brandon Waddell’s second inning, which can be seen on the last play in the video below. He followed that up with an even better play in the next at-bat, which unfortunately my camera cut out for. The play was a pop up to foul territory in left field, and Tolman ranged back with Kramer and the left fielder closing in and made an over the shoulder basket catch while still running away from the plate. He finished off the inning with the final out on a routine grounder.
Waddell’s focus here has been on being efficient, and he was efficient today. He only needed a handful of pitches to get through the first inning, including a three pitch strikeout. He didn’t have much of an issue in the second, and was helped by Tolman’s defense. Video of the first inning, plus Tolman’s first play in the second are below.
Here are some photos from the day: