The Arizona Fall League only has a few more weeks and I wanted to take a look at how current Royals prospects are fairing, in Arizona. The Royals, originally, sent 8 players down to Surprise this fall. The pitchers on the roster include J.C. Sulbaran, Edwin Carl, Jon Keck, and Justin Marks. Rounding out the Royals part of the Surprise roster are hitters Alex McClure, Whit Merrifield, Brian Fletcher, and Orlando Calixte.
Edwin Carl and Justin Marks are having pretty decent falls. Carl has an ERA at 1.42, as he has appeared in 5 games and thrown 6.1 innings thus far. He has tallied 4 strike outs against 3 walks and surrendered only one earned run. Marks has started 3 games and he accounted for the win in two of them. In 8.1 innings pitched, he has an ERA of 2.16 and has struck out 6 as opposed to 4 walks. Two pitchers who would like to forget their fall in Arizona are Sulbaran and Jon Keck. Keck has allowed 6 earned runs in 3.1 innings pitched, good for an ERA of 16.20. Sulbaran on the other hand, while not as bad as Keck, got pulled from the team on Tuesday, due to continuing arm soreness. Sulbaran was replaced by Malcom Culver, who was an 8th round pick in 2008. Initially, Culver was an infielder but began the transition to pitching in 2011. As of this article, he has yet to pitch an inning.
There are four hitters on the Surprise Saguaros. The first one I’m going to look at is Orlando Calixte, who is on the “taxi squad”, meaning, he is only eligible to play on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Calixte is hitting .364 with one home run and one RBI. He has had 22 at bats and has struck out 7 times while walking zero times. Whit Merrifield has played in 9 games and is hitting .267 in 30 at bats. He has stolen 3 bases and driven in 2 runs for Surprise.
Alex McClure has played in 5 games and recorded 19 at bats. In those 19 at bats he has 5 hits which is good for a .263 average. McClure has also driven in 3 runs and recorded two doubles in his time in the AFL so far. The Royals designated Brian Fletcher as the “priority player” which means he will be granted maximum playing time. Fletcher hasn’t put that time to good use. He’s currently hitting .176 in 34 at bats. He has totaled 6 hits, two of them being the extra base variety. This fall he has struck out 16 times which is almost half of his at bats.
None of the Royals prospects are putting up stellar numbers in Arizona, but a few of them are still very respectable. The Rising Stars game is set for November 3rd which is next Saturday. The AFL season concludes on November 17th as the championship game will be played then. If you want to stay up to date a link to the Surprise Saguaros can be found here.