Davidson walks it off, gets helped off in AFL title win

Braves prospect hits game-winning homer, injures himself celebrating

November 18th, 2018

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Peoria Javelinas are back-to-back champs.
:: Complete coveraege of the 2018 AFL championship game ::
Braxton Davidson (Braves) lifted the Javelinas to a 3-2 win over Salt River with a walk-off homer in the 10th inning of Saturday's Arizona Fall League championship game.
"Indescribable," Buddy Reed, the Padres' No. 13 prospect, said of the homer, the second walk-off (Mike Hessman, 2001) in Fall League title game history. "Braxton comes up, last man up, we all said he was going to do something special, hits a walk-off homer. Rolls his ankle, unfortunately, but it was huge."
With one out in the 10th Davidson crushed a 2-1 pitch deep over the right-field wall. He immediately knew it was gone and bat flipped, but hurt himself rounding the bases and was helped off the field and eventually taken to a local hospital to check for a possible left-foot fracture.

The blast capped a late-inning comeback for the Javelinas, who trailed 2-0 entering the ninth. Peoria had plenty of opportunities to score, but couldn't come up with the big hit, stranding runners in each of the first four innings and ultimately left 12 men on base.
In the ninth, the offense finally came through.
Ian Miller (Mariners) led off the frame with a walk and Lucius Fox (Rays) followed with a double. Miller came around to score on a wild pitch and Brewers top prospect Keston Hiura tied the game up with a single.

"With this team we know we're capable of putting up runs any inning regardless of the score, it shows how resilisnt we are, how in the game we are, to be able to pull it out and win," Hiura, who was named the league's MVP prior to the game, said.
An inning later, Davidson, who hit a career-high 20 homers in the regular season and finished tied for first with six homers in the AFL, put the game away.
"It just says a lot about his work ethic, coming here he had a lot to work on - he told us he had a lot to work on and he proved everybody wrong, everyone that doubted him," Reed said. " ... It's unbelievable, I'm so happy for him."

Before the late-inning fireworks Salt River starter -- who fired four scoreless frames, despite not having his best stuff -- kept Peoria offensive in check, just as he'd done to nearly every offense he'd faced in the AFL.
"I struggled a little bit," Yamamoto said after issuing five walks in four innings. "I got into deep counts, walked a lot of guys. I don't usually do that, but hey, it's part of the game. I've got to find a way to get out of it."

Once Yamamoto left the game, it was more of the same for the Javelinas. Peoria left one runner on base in the seventh and two in the eighth, but ultimately none of it mattered.
"You hear all our guys saying never give up, we're the Javs and like everybody said, we did what we had to do, we came back," Reed said. "It's not about how you start as everybody talks about, it's how you finished and we finished strong."