An error in right by 23-year-old Detroit Tigers' outfield prospect Tyler Collins let two unearned runs score on 25-year-old Washington Nationals' prospect Sammy Solis, who'd hit a batter and given up a single in the top of the first Friday night in Arizona Fall League action in Mesa, Arizona's HoHoKam Park. Solis threw 28 pitches in the first inning, then gave up a single in a scoreless, 16-pitch second.
After allowing a single and a walk in the third, the Nats' 2010 2nd Round pick got an out on a line drive to left and an inning-ending double play to complete a 13-pitch inning, then pitched around an error in a 14-pitch fourth that ended the left-hander's fifth AFL start after he'd struck out four while surrendering three hits total, a walk and just the two unearned runs. Solis threw 71 pitches total, 44 of them strikes and took the loss when the Mesa Solar Sox dropped a 5-4 decision to the Peoria Javelinas and fell to 12-8 overall.
Solis is now (3-2) as a Solar Sox' starter, with a 2.29 ERA, six walks (2.75 BB/9) and 20 Ks (9.15 K/9) in 19 2/3 IP. Nats' prospect Robert Benincasa, 23, threw a scoreless inning in relief, walking one and giving up a hit in a 22-pitch, 11-strike frame in which he recorded one strikeout for seven total in eight AFL innings pitched in which he's walked three, given up 10 hits and allowed four earned runs.
The other Nats' prospects in the Solar Sox' lineup were little help to Solis. Matt Skole, Steven Souza, Jr. and Adrian Nieto were a combined 1 for 11 with Souza collecting the only hit between them when he singled to start the seventh and scored as Mesa rallied late with a run in the sixth and a three-run seventh before eventually falling short. Skole was 0 for 3 with a walk. Over his last six games, the 24-year-old 1B/3B is just 1 for 19 with the one hit a home run. In eleven games in his second stint in the AFL, Skole is 6 for 35 with three doubles, a home run, 13 walks and 10 Ks.
Souza's 1 for 4 game gave him hits in seven of eight starts with the Solar Sox in which the 24-year-old outfielder is 10 for 29 (.345/.441/.379) with a double, five walks, seven Ks and nine stolen bases. After putting up a .300/.396/.557 line in 77 games and 323 plate appearances at Double-A Harrisburg in 2013, Souza, a 2007 3rd Round pick in his seventh minor league season was added to the Nats' 40-Man Roster to protect him from selection in this winter's Rule 5 Draft:
Adrian Nieto got a bit of good news too, before he went out and put up an 0 for 4 with a K which left the 23-year-old catcher 8 for 28 in eight games in Arizona. Nieto was named as a replacement for the AFL East's squad in Saturday night's Fall Stars Game:
Nieto will join Brian Goodwin, who turned 23 today, as the Nationals' two representatives in the showcase of the game's top prospects, which is being broadcast on the MLB Network at 8:00 PM EDT. Goodwin's in the starting lineup by the way:
Falls Stars East starters: Ramsey 7, Goodwin 8, Bryant 5, Cron 3, Lindsey 4, Piscotty DH, Soler 9, O'Brien 2, Russell 6 & Sanchez 1. #afl13— Arizona Fall League (@MLBazFallLeague) November 2, 2013
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