After missing much of the second half of the regular season with a groin injury, a healthy Tyler Beede finished his Arizona Fall League campaign Tuesday on a high note with a solid outing in Scottsdale's 6-5 loss against Surprise at Surprise Stadium.
Beede, San Francisco's No. 3 prospect, allowed two earned runs on six hits over five innings en route to a no-decision in his final AFL start. He struck out one, induced seven ground-ball outs and hit one batter while throwing 44 of his 71 pitches for strikes.
"Obviously I knew this was going to be my last start," said Beede after the game, "so I went into it with the notion that I'd give it everything I got out there and come out of it feeling healthy, feeling good."
The Scorpions' offense supported Beede early by pushing across one run in the first inning and then scoring twice in each of the subsequent two frames.
Kyle Holder reached on a one-out double in the top of the first and then scored Scottsdale's first run when Surprise second baseman Edmundo Sosa misplayed a ground ball off the bat of Thairo Estrada.
Estevan Florial (Yankees' No. 3) and Steven Duggar (Giants' No. 7) both contributed RBI doubles to extend the Scorpions' lead in the second inning, and Kevin Kaczmarski and Aramis Garcia pushed across a run with a double and single, respectively, in the third.
Beede, meanwhile, held the Saguaros scoreless over the first four innings, the last of which culminated with a swinging strikeout of Sosa, completing an 11-pitch at-bat.
"I remember after probably pitch six or seven just trying to rear back and throw it by him," said Beede, "but he kept battling and putting a bat on it, getting a piece of it. Throwing the changeup to strike him out was a relief -- I was pretty tired after that at-bat."
Those extra pitches might have taken a toll on Beede, as he quickly allowed a leadoff single followed by a hit-by-pitch when he returned for the fifth inning.
He would go on to yield a sacrifice fly to reigning AFL Player of the Week Nicky Lopez (Royals' No. 11), followed by an RBI double to Oscar Mercado, before finishing the frame.
"I think at that point in the game -- during the fourth and fifth inning -- I started to get a little tired, which was fairly normal," Beede said. "So I think it was just an opportunity for me to battle through and pitch with the stuff I had. After the first two guys got on, it was just about battling from there to get three outs and get out of there."
Beede remained in line for his first Fall League win until the bottom of the eighth inning, when Surprise came roaring back to score three runs and tie the game at 5.
The Saguaros would complete their comeback to win it in the ninth, with Yanio Perez (Rangers' No. 11) plating Lopez with a walk-off single.
Beede's outing marked his second straight five-inning performance after he totaled just six innings in his first two starts for Scottsdale. Overall, the 24-year-old right-hander pitched to a 4.50 ERA with 11 strikeouts and four walks in 16 innings in the Fall League.
More importantly, Beede, after making just 19 starts for Triple-A Sacramento during the regular season, finished his AFL campaign fully healthy.
"It's been good to get innings under my belt," he said. "It's not so much about statistics out here as it is a matter of getting more innings. I'm feeling comfortable with where I finished up, which is exciting, for sure."
Lopez went 1-3 for with a walk to improve his average to .390, currently second-best in the Fall League, while Mercado (Cardinals' No. 18) and catcher Josh Morgan both finished with two hits for Surprise. Morgan, the Rangers' No. 15 prospect and a member of the Saguaros' taxi squad, is now batting .429 through eight games.
Ryan Eades was once again sharp out of Surprise's bullpen. The Twins right-hander tossed two scoreless frames with three strikeouts, lowering his Fall League ERA to 0.66.
Florial (No. 78 overall) led the Scorpions' offense with a pair of doubles as part of a 3-for-5 performance. Garcia (Giants' No. 8) and David Thompson (Mets' No. 24) also tallied multiple hits the loss.