On Sunday in Australia, Michael Suchy extended his on base streak to 21 games by going 2-for-5 with a single and his 12th double. He scored two runs and drove in a pair. With one week remaining in the season, Suchy is hitting .306/.386/.570 through 34 games. In this unusually high year for offense, he only ranks 15th in the league in OPS. For reference sake, those same numbers in 2016 would have had him just a few points behind the league leader in OPS, and every year going back to the 2010 season, he would have been no lower than ninth place.
After making his second straight scoreless appearance on the mound yesterday, Connor MacDonald was back at first base, where he went 1-for-4 with a double, HBP and two runs scored. He’s hitting .281/.351/.570 in 33 games, while striking out in 37.3% of his plate appearances. That last stat shows why someone with that slash line was signed as a pitcher instead. He reportedly throws hard, which we will see this spring for ourselves.
Sam Street pitched for a third time over the weekend. He came on with two outs in the ninth and allowed a single before recording the final out for a 7-5 score and his second save. In seven appearances this winter, Street has a 3.72 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP in 9.2 innings, with 12 strikeouts.
The final week of the ABL season, which runs from Thursday until Saturday, will decide which Pirates make it into the playoffs. Robbie Glendinning and Perth have already qualified, but either Connor MacDonald and Michael Suchy (Sydney) or Sam Street (Melbourne) will get the final spot.
The ABL actually changed the playoff procedure this year. In the past, the second and third place team would play a best-of-three, with the winner playing the first place team in the finals. Now four teams get into the playoffs, with the top team playing the fourth place team in the first round. The finals have been shown on MLB Network in the past, but the TV schedule doesn’t have it listed as of right now.
In the Venezuelan league finals, Elvis Escobar went 2-for-3 with two doubles and two runs scored, helping his team to a 4-0 victory, which tied the series up 1-1. His first double came off of Major League veteran Freddy Garcia, mentioned only because you now can’t believe Freddy Garcia is still pitching. Escobar went 1-for-4 with a single in the series opener.
The next winter league article will be Friday. Get ready for a plethora of prospect rankings over the next two weeks.