Willie Calhoun and Cody Bellinger both showcased their hitting skills with home runs in the Fall Stars Game on Saturday night, the culmination of a strong week for both players in the Arizona Fall League.
Calhoun won MVP honors in the Fall Stars Game on Saturday with three hits — a home run and two singles — and three RBI, but was also 3-for-8 (.375) with a double in his two games during the week for the Glendale Desert Dogs.
All his non-Saturday damage came on Tuesday against Scottsdale at Camelback Ranch, going 3-for-5 with a double and an RBI. He played one game at second base and one as designated hitter, before starting at second in the Fall Stars Game.
Bellinger played all nine innings in Saturday’s Fall Stars Game, and in his two games during the week for Glendale was 4-for-9 (.444) with two doubles and four RBI and a walk.
Bellinger had two hits in both games during the week, playing once at first base and once at designated hitter. He started Saturday night at first base and played all nine innings.
The secret to the duo’s success this week was pretty obvious:
Alex Verdugo was 1-for-7 this week in his two games before leaving to join Team Mexico for a pair of exhibition games against Japan next week at the Tokyo Dome. Verdugo hasn’t seen results at the plate so far in the AFL, going 6-for-43 (.140) with two doubles, a triple, four walks and eight strikeouts in his 13 games.
Tim Locastro didn’t play this week.
On the pitching side, Chris Anderson had his best AFL start to date on Wednesday, pitching five strong innings at Mesa, allowing a run on four hits, with two walks and two strikeouts for the win. That came after allowing 14 runs on 13 hits in eight innings in his first three starts.
Ralston Cash pitched a scoreless inning in that Wednesday game, his only appearance of the week.
Joe Broussard pitched a scoreless inning on Thursday vs. Scottsdale to earn the save.
Corey Copping pitched in two games during the week, allowing two runs on three hits in inning on Halloween, then rebounded with a scoreless inning on Friday at Peoria. Copping struck out two in his two innings for the week.
There are two more weeks remaining in the Arizona Fall League, with the regular season ending on Thursday, Nov. 17. Glendale (10-12-0) is 2½ games out, in third place in the 3-team West Division. The two division winners will play in the AFL Championship Game on Saturday, Nov. 19 at Scottsdale Stadium.
But for now, here is the schedule for Glendale in the penultimate week of the AFL (all times PT):
Monday: vs. Peoria, 12:35 p.m.
Tuesday: at Scottsdale, 2:35 p.m.
Wednesday: at Salt River, 2:35 p.m.
Thursday: vs. Surprise, 12:35 p.m.
Friday: at Peoria, 3:05 p.m.
Saturday: vs. Scottsdale, 12:35 p.m.