Cardinals Arizona Fall League Report: Week 1

Seth Blair

In the early going, Seth Blair is among the AFL leaders in a number of pitching categories.

Welcome to our first weekly Cardinals Arizona Fall League Report, covering results from the start of the season through Saturday, October 20.

The league

34 former first-round draft picks are on AFL rosters this season, including two Cardinals, Kolten Wong (22nd overall in 2011) and Seth Blair (46th in 2010). Others include former Mizzou hurler Kyle Gibson (22nd by Minnesota in 2009) and Cory Rasmus, younger brother of Colby, taken 38th by Atlanta in 2006.

The only first overall pick assigned to the AFL this year is Tampa Bay's Tim Beckham, drafted in 2008. Since the AFL began in 1992, 13 of the 21 no. 1 overall selections have played in the league.

12 current St. Louis Cardinals once played in the AFL.

The team

The 6-4 Surprise Saguaros are currently in second place in the West Division, just ½ game behind first-place Peoria.

The offense, led by 2012 Quad Cities hitting coach Joe Kruzel, is second in the six-team league with a .283 batting average. Surprise leads the AFL with 73 runs scored and a .369 on-base percentage. They are second in the league with 60 RBI. Saguaros hitters have drawn 50 walks, most in the league.

Surprise's pitching staff leads the AFL with a 3.31 ERA. They have allowed 36 earned runs, lowest in the league, and 40 walks, tied for second fewest in the AFL.

Cardinals AFL hitting leaders

AFL ranks Player # Rank Player # Rank Player # Rank
BA Wong 0.400 T4th O'Neill 0.375 T7th
OBP O'Neill 0.516 4th Walsh 0.417 T14th Wong 0.400 T19th
SLG Wong 0.533 T17th
OPS Wong 0.933 T17th O'Neill 0.933 T17th
Runs O'Neill 6 T8th Walsh  5 T14th
Doubles Walsh 3 T6th
Triples
HR Wong 1 T7th
RBI Walsh 5 T13th Wong 5 T13h
Walks O'Neill 6 T3rd
Ks
Steals O'Neill 2 T12th

Wong, Colin Walsh and Mike O'Neill are among the league leaders in a number of categories.

Cardinals AFL pitching leaders

AFL ranks Player # Rank Player # Rank Player # Rank
ERA Blair 0.00 T1st Siegrist 0.00 T1st Whiting 1.62 T19th
Wins Blair 1 T4th Siegrist 1 T4th Whiting 1 T4th
Losses
Saves
IP Blair 6.1 T13th Whiting 6 T16th
Hits 
Walks Blair 4 T8th
Ks Blair 10 T4th Siegrist 9 T6th
WHIP Siegrist 0.33 2nd

Blair has made two starts, striking out five in each. To-date, only two AFL hurlers have logged more than five strikeouts in a game. Kevin Siegrist is right behind with nine total.

Offensive numbers

Player  G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB CS OBP SLG AVG OPS E
Wong 7 30 4 12 1 0 1 5 0 5 1 3 0.400 0.533 0.400 0.933 2
O'Neill 6 24 6 9 1 0 0 4 6 4 2 1 0.516 0.417 0.375 0.933 0
Walsh 5 20 5 6 3 0 0 5 4 7 0 0 0.417 0.450 0.300 0.867 0
Stanley 4 19 3 4 1 0 0 1 1 5 0 0 0.250 0.263 0.211 0.513 0

About the only failure for Wong in the early going is his 1-for-4 success rate in stolen bases. Walsh has struck out in 1/3 of his at-bats. Catcher Cody Stanley played in just four of 10 games.

Pitching numbers

Pitcher  W L ERA G GS IP H R ER HR HB BB SO WHIP GF
Seth Blair 1 0 0.00 2 2 6.1 3 1 0 0 1 4 10 1.11 0
Kevin Siegrist 1 0 0.00 2 1 6 2 0 0 0 0 0 9 0.33 0
Boone Whiting 1 0 1.69 2 2 5.1 5 2 1 0 0 3 5 1.50 0
Sam Freeman 0 0 4.50 4 0 4 6 2 2 0 0 0 3 1.50 4

Blair and Boone Whiting are the designated starters, but Siegrist also made one spot start. Sam Freeman's usage pattern is clear – one inning to close out games. Despite six wins, the Saguaros as a team are yet to have a save.



Brian Walton can be reached via email at brian@thecardinalnationblog.com. Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Follow Brian on Twitter.

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