Travis and Lin lead Scottsdale offense in AFL
Red Sox prospects combine to go 4-for-8 in Scorpions' Fall League victory
Scottsdale (16-7) increased its lead in the Arizona Fall League East division Wednesday, beating Glendale 7-5 at Camelback Ranch.
The Scorpions' offense featured strong performances by a pair of Red Sox prospects, as second baseman Tzu-Wei Lin went 3-for-4 with two runs scored while first baseman Sam Travis finished 1-for-4 with a walk and RBI.
Travis, Boston's No. 11 prospect, has opened eyes with his bat in the Fall League, hitting .333 with an .895 OPS, 24 hits, nine extra-base hits and 12 RBIs in 16 games for Scottsdale. The 22-year-old has now hit safely in eight straight games and tallied an RBI in each of his last six contests.
A third-round selection in the 2014 Draft out of Indiana, Travis showed an advanced bat in his first full professional season, posting a .307/.381/.452 batting line with nine home runs, 32 doubles, six triples and 78 RBIs in 131 games between Class A Advanced Salem (66 games) and Double-A Portland (65). On top of that, he also stole 19 bases, drew 59 walks against 77 strikeouts and played excellent defense at first base.
Signed by Boston out of Taiwan back in 2012, Lin also reached Double-A this past season for the first time in his career but was overmatched against Eastern League pitching and ultimately hit just .202/.268/.266 over 46 games at Portland. He held his own in at Salem before that, however, hitting .281/.331/.367 in 73 games.
The 21-year-old middle infielder was hitting only .189 in the Fall League entering Wednesday's game against Glendale, but, after collecting three hits in the contest, owns a .244 average through 11 games.
Glendale (10-12) wasted little time scoring in the contest as Dodgers No. 24 prospect Kyle Farmer's two-out double plated Reese McGuire, who was running from first base with a 3-2 count.
Scottsdale got the run back -- and then some -- in the top of the second, when Adam Brett Walker II, the Twins' No. 10 prospect, connected on a two-run shot to left-center field for his fifth Fall League home run.
However, Glendale responded with a two-spot of its own in the bottom half, with third baseman Trey Michalczewski, the No. 6 prospect in the White Sox organization, driving in a run on a double and then coming around to score on Brandon Trinkwon's single. Two innings later, McGuire extended the Desert Dogs' lead to 4-2 with an RBI single to the opposite field.
But Scorpions came right back to reclaim the lead in the top of the fifth, scoring three runs courtesy of a wild pitch, a fielding error and an RBI single by Giants No. 2 prospect Christian Arroyo. Scottsdale only added to its lead after that, with Tigers No. 18 prospect Mike Gerber plating Lin with a sacrifice fly in the subsequent inning and Travis delivering an RBI single in the top of the ninth.
Arroyo went 1-for-5 and scored two runs for the Scorpions, while Tigers No. 29 prospect Dominic Ficociello went 2-for-5 with a double, giving him multiple hits in five of his last 10 games.
McGuire, the Pirates' No. 6 prospect, added to his impressive Fall League campaign by reaching base in four of his five plate appearances for Glendale as part of a 2-for-3 performance. With multiple hits in four of his last five games, the 21-year-old backstop is hitting .368/.455/.526 through 11 games for the Desert Dogs. Michalczewski also tallied multiple hits in the loss, finishing 2-for-4 with his second Fall League double, two runs scored and an RBI.
Lastly, Pirates No. 25 prospect Steven Brault turned in another strong outing for Glendale, allowing two runs on one hit and one walk while striking out an AFL-high five batters over three innings. After surrendering four earned runs in his Fall League debut, the left-hander has allowed just three earned runs in his last nine innings spanning three starts.