AFL Update: A 4-run third was all the scoring the Scottsdale Scorpions would need in Friday night's 9-1 win over the visiting Mesa Solar Sox. Nats' infield prospect Stephen Lombardozzi, who's played short in just 7 of 313 games in the Nats' system since being selected with the 571st overall pick in the 19th Round of the '08 Draft out of St. Petersburg College, in St. Petersburg, FLA, started there instead of second last night for the Scorpions, and helped turn a 4-6-3 DP while going 1 for 3 with 2 walks and 2 runs scored at the plate. Lombardozzi walked in his first at bat, took second on a passed ball, third on a groundout and scored on a wild pitch for an early 1-0 lead. Lombardozzi then led off the third with his 5th double of the fall and scored the eventual winning run in the next at bat when 22-year-old Giants' infield prospect Brandon Belt hit an RBI single to drive in the first of four runs the Scorpions would score that inning.
Michael Burgess, the Nats' third 1st Round pick of 2007 behind LHP's Ross Detwiler and Josh Smoker, has a .270/.317/.378 slash line this Fall after going 0 for 4 with 2 K's last night. The 22-year-old outfield prospect has 10 hits in 37 at bats for the Scorpions, in which he's collected 2 doubles, a triple, 7 RBI's and 3 walks while striking out 13 times. 22-year-old right-hander Brad Peacock was the only Nats' pitching prospect in action in the win over Mesa, but his streak of 4.1 scoreless innings pitched ended in the fifth when he surrendered the Solar Sox only run of the evening on a one-out RBI single in the fifth which followed a leadoff single and wild pitch. Peacock got help when the aforementioned DP Lombardozzi helped turn ended the fifth, and he came back out for a 1-2-3 scoreless sixth.
Scorpions now 10-6.
(ed. note - "In case you somehow missed it, Nats' catcher-in-training Derek Norris' performance Thursday night deserves a mention. The 21-years-old-til-February '07 4th Round pick hit his second double and third AFL HR in the Scorpions' 9-5 win over the Surprise Rafters, scoring two runs himself and driving in 5 total to leave the Goddard, Kansas-born prospect hitting .308/.486/.808 with 9 walks, 7 K's and 2 SB in 9 games and 26 AFL at bats. Bryce Harper's two starts a week might make headlines, but so far Norris is the story of the Arizona Fall League for the Nats.")
• Lige de Beisbol Profesional de Puerto Rico Update:
Danny Espinosa was at short last night in Carolina, Puerto Rico's Roberto Clemente Stadium, as the Nats' 23-year-old infielder, who played second the majority of the time after his September call-up to D.C., went 3 for 5 with a walk, 2 runs scored and a stolen base, his second (SB) so far in the Liga de Beisbol Profesional de Puerto Rico. Espinosa singled to start the game and scored the Leones de Ponce's first run on a two-out, 3-run double by one-time Nat Alex Cintron that made it 3-0 early. In the sixth, Espinosa worked a walk out of MLB vet Antonio "Six-Fingers" Alfonseca, and scored on fellow Nats' prospect Chris Marrero's two-run single. Marrero, the Nationals' '06 1st Round pick, finished Friday night's game 1 for 5 with the 2 RBI's, and he's now 7 for 22 (.318/.348/.409) with 2 doubles and 5 RBI's in 5 games for the Leones.
Espinosa's 7 for 22 as well, (.318/.348/.318), with the 7 hits in 5 games, all singles. Nats' pitching prospects Cory VanAllen, Hassan Pena and Patrick McCoy each managed to blow a lead last night, giving up 2 ER each on a combined 8 hits and 2 walks in 3.2 IP in what ends up an 11-10 loss the Gigantes de Carolina.