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Rookies dominate on day 2 of playoffs

@wboor
October 1, 2020

The postseason stage is bright, but several rookies rose to the occasion on the second day of the 2020 playoffs. Whether it was coming through with clutch hits or dominating on the mound, there was no shortage of rookies contributing to their team’s successes and showing that the future of

The postseason stage is bright, but several rookies rose to the occasion on the second day of the 2020 playoffs.

Whether it was coming through with clutch hits or dominating on the mound, there was no shortage of rookies contributing to their team’s successes and showing that the future of the game is in good hands.

All told, the seven hitters on team top 30 prospects list went 8-for-21 (.381) with five runs scored. And on the mound, 15 rookies combined to post a 2.70 ERA over 26 2/3 innings, in which they allowed just 14 hits while striking out 23.

Kirilloff makes history
While plenty of youngsters are making their postseason debuts this week, Alex Kirilloff took it a step further. The Twins’ No. 2 prospect (No. 27 overall) made his Major League debut in the Twins’ 3-1 loss to the Astros and became the first position player in history to notch his first hit in the postseason.

In addition to going 1-for-4 at the plate, Kirilloff also showed off some skills in the outfield and made an impressive diving catch out in right.

Astros rookie hurlers eliminate Twins
Opposite Kirilloff and the Twins, the Astros rode a trio of rookie pitchers to victory. Jose Urquidy got the start and threw 4 1/3 innings of one-run ball before turning it over to Brooks Raley, who closed out the fifth. Cristian Javier tossed three scoreless frames and ultimately picked up the win.

Pearson dominates with triple-digit heat
The Blue Jays fell 8-2 to Tampa Bay and were eliminated from the postseason, but their rookie pitchers impressed.

Nate Pearson, the No. 6 overall prospect (Toronto No. 1), showed why he’s so highly touted as he cruised through two scoreless innings, striking out five of the six batters he faced.

Pearson also showed off his 80-grade fastball, twice topping 100 mph and reaching at least 99 mph seven times. Thomas Hatch also spun a scoreless frame for Toronto, something he did in Game 1 as well.

Arozarena rakes
Randy Arozarena, who tripled and scored the Rays' first run in Game 1, turned his performance up a notch in Game 2. The 25-year-old, whom Tampa Bay acquired in a January trade with St. Louis, went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles. He also drew a base on balls, drove in a run and scored twice.

Carlson does it all
After hitting .238 over 14 games in September, Dylan Carlson (Cardinals No. 1, No. 14 overall) came out raking to begin the postseason and put his name among some impressive company.

At 21 years and 343 days old, Carlson became the third-youngest player in Cardinals history to reach base four times in a playoff game. The two younger players? A 20-year-old Joe Garagiola in 1946 and a 21-year-old Stan Musial in 1942.

Carlson, who also flashed some leather and robbed Manny Machado of a hit, finished 2-for-3 with two walks and a pair of runs scored.

William Boor is a reporter for MLB Pipeline. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor.