Arizona Fall League

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Arizona Fall League
ArizonaFallLeagueLogo.PNG
Arizona Fall League logo
Sport Baseball
Founded 1992
No. of teams 6
Country USA
Most recent champion(s) Surprise Saguaros (2)
Most titles Phoenix Desert Dogs (6)
Official website Official website

The Arizona Fall League is an off-season league owned and operated by Major League Baseball1 which operates during the fall in Arizona, United States, at six spring training complexes.1 The Arizona Fall League attracts many of the top prospects in minor league baseball.

Structure

Each August, Major League Baseball clubs hold a position draft1 to determine the players who will go to Arizona. Most are Double-A and Triple-A Minor League players.1 Each club can opt to send two players below Double-A. Foreign players are allowed, as long as the player is not on his native country's primary protected player list. The league is designed for these prospects to refine their skills and perform in game settings in front of major and minor league baseball scouts and team executives, who are in attendance at almost every game. Play begins shortly after the end of MLB's regular season in early October and ends in mid-November with a championship game between the winners of the East and West divisions.

The Arizona Fall League teams are each affiliated with five separate Major League teams; each affiliated Major League team provides seven players who team up to fill the 35-man roster of each team.1 Additionally, teams may elect to send Taxi Squad players who are only eligible on Wednesdays and Saturdays. MLB teams also provide managers, coaches, and trainers.1

Notable players

A number of famous ballplayers have had stints in the Arizona Fall League. In 1994, the league got worldwide attention as Michael Jordan's second professional baseball league, when he played for the Scottsdale Scorpions. Other notable ballplayers who have played in the Arizona Fall League include David Wright, Derek Jeter, and Albert Pujols.

Current teams

Division Team Major League Affiliates City Stadium Capacity
East Mesa Solar Sox Chicago Cubs, Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Oakland Athletics, Washington Nationals Mesa, Arizona HoHoKam Stadium 12,632
Salt River Rafters Arizona Diamondbacks, Colorado Rockies, St. Louis Cardinals, Tampa Bay Rays, Toronto Blue Jays Scottsdale, Arizona Salt River Fields at Talking Stick 11,000
Scottsdale Scorpions Atlanta Braves, New York Mets, New York Yankees, Pittsburgh Pirates, San Francisco Giants Scottsdale, Arizona Scottsdale Stadium 11,200
West Peoria Javelinas Houston Astros, Kansas City Royals, Philadelphia Phillies, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners Peoria, Arizona Peoria Sports Complex 12,882
Surprise Saguaros Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians, Milwaukee Brewers, Texas Rangers Surprise, Arizona Surprise Stadium 10,714
Glendale Desert Dogs Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Los Angeles Dodgers, Miami Marlins, Minnesota Twins Glendale, Arizona Camelback Ranch 10,300

2013 Standings

Eastern

2013 Arizona Fall League East Division
Team Win Loss Tie  % GB
Mesa Solar Sox 19 11 1 .633
Salt River Rafters 19 12 0 .613 0.5
Scottsdale Scorpions 10 21 0 .323 9.5

Western

2013 Arizona Fall League West Division
Team Win Loss Tie  % GB
Surprise Saguaros 18 12 1 .600
Glendale Desert Dogs 13 16 2 .448 4.5
Peoria Javelinas 12 19 0 .387 6.5

Championship Game

Saturday, November 16, 2013 – 1:10 pm (MST) at Scottsdale Stadium, Arizona

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Mesa Solar Sox 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 2
Surprise Saguaros 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 X 2 5 1
WP: Eduardo Rodríguez (1–0)   LP: Dallas Beeler (0–1)   Sv: David Goforth (1)

Championship history

Year Champion Runner-Up
1992 Sun Cities Solar Sox Phoenix Desert Dogs
1993 Tempe Rafters Tucson Javelinas
1994 Peoria Javelinas Mesa Saguaros
1995 Mesa Saguaros Sun Cities Solar Sox
1996 Scottsdale Scorpions Mesa Saguaros
1997 Peoria Javelinas Grand Canyon Rafters
1998 Sun Cities Solar Sox Grand Canyon Rafters
1999 Mesa Solar Sox Maryvale Saguaros
2000 Grand Canyon Rafters Phoenix Desert Dogs
2001 Phoenix Desert Dogs Grand Canyon Rafters
2002 Peoria Javelinas Scottsdale Scorpions
2003 Mesa Solar Sox Mesa Desert Dogs
2004 Phoenix Desert Dogs Scottsdale Scorpions
2005 Phoenix Desert Dogs Surprise Scorpions
2006 Phoenix Desert Dogs Grand Canyon Rafters
2007 Phoenix Desert Dogs Surprise Rafters
2008 Phoenix Desert Dogs Mesa Solar Sox
2009 Peoria Javelinas Phoenix Desert Dogs
2010 Scottsdale Scorpions Peoria Javelinas
2011 Salt River Rafters Surprise Saguaros
2012 Peoria Javelinas Salt River Rafters
2013 Surprise Saguaros Mesa Solar Sox

Most Valuable Player award

First presented in 2002 and named for Joe Black of the Brooklyn Dodgers, the award honors the 1952 National League Rookie of the Year.2

Winners have been the following:3

Year Player Organization Position Team
2002 Harvey, KenKen Harvey Kansas City Royals First baseman Scottsdale Scorpions
2003 Dubois, JasonJason Dubois Chicago Cubs Outfielder Mesa Solar Sox
2004 Shelton, ChrisChris Shelton Detroit Tigers Designated hitter Grand Canyon Rafters
2005 Duncan, EricEric Duncan New York Yankees Third baseman Grand Canyon Rafters
2006 Chip Cannon Toronto Blue Jays First baseman Phoenix Desert Dogs
2007 Fuld, SamSam Fuld Chicago Cubs Outfielder Mesa Solar Sox
2008 Hanson, TommyTommy Hanson Atlanta Braves Pitcher Mesa Solar Sox
2009 Desme, GrantGrant Desme Oakland Athletics Outfielder Phoenix Desert Dogs
2010 Ackley, DustinDustin Ackley Seattle Mariners Second baseman Peoria Javelinas
2011 Arenado, NolanNolan Arenado Colorado Rockies Third baseman Salt River Rafters
2012 McGuiness, ChrisChris McGuiness Texas Rangers First baseman Surprise Saguaros
2013 Bryant, KrisKris Bryant Chicago Cubs Third baseman Mesa Solar Sox

Stenson Award

The Dernell Stenson Sportsmanship Award was created in 2004, in memory of Dernell Stenson,4 an outfielder for the Scottsdale Scorpions (Cincinnati Reds), who was killed in a carjacking on November 5, 2003. The award is voted on by the managers and coaches of the six Arizona Fall League teams.5

Stenson Award winners have been:5

Year Player Organization Position Team
2004 Teahen, MarkMark Teahen Kansas City Royals Third baseman Phoenix Desert Dogs
2005 Ethier, AndreAndre Ethier Oakland Athletics Outfielder Phoenix Desert Dogs
2006 Frandsen, KevinKevin Frandsen San Francisco Giants Infielder Scottsdale Scorpions
2007 Fuld, SamSam Fuld Chicago Cubs Outfielder Mesa Solar Sox
2008 Donald, JasonJason Donald Philadelphia Phillies Infielder Mesa Solar Sox
2009 Mitchell, RussRuss Mitchell Los Angeles Dodgers First baseman Peoria Javelinas
2010 Lombardozzi, Jr., SteveSteve Lombardozzi, Jr. Washington Nationals Third baseman Scottsdale Scorpions
2011 Mattison, KevinKevin Mattison Miami Marlins Outfielder Surprise Saguaros
2012 Kimball, ColeCole Kimball Washington Nationals Pitcher Salt River Rafters
2013 Cecchini, GarinGarin Cecchini Boston Red Sox Third Baseman Surprise Saguaros

Hall of Fame

Twenty-three former Arizona Fall League players have been recognized for their achievements in Major League Baseball since the creation of the Hall of Fame in 2001.6 To be considered by the selection committee, a player must be recognized by Major League Baseball as an MVP, Rookie of the Year, All-Star, Gold Glove, or Silver Slugger.

2001
  • Dusty Baker
  • Nomar Garciaparia
  • Derek Jeter
  • Mike Pizza
2002
  • Jason Giambi
  • Jerry Manuel
2003
  • Shawn Green
  • Todd Helton
  • Mike Scioscia
2004
  • Garret Anderson
  • Tony Pena
  • Albert Pujols
2005
  • Troy Percival
  • Terry Francona
2006
  • Grady Little
  • Roy Halladay
  • Alfonso Soriano
2007
  • Jermaine Dye
  • Derek Lee
  • Ken Macha
  • Torii Hunter
2008
  • Jimmy Rollins
  • Eric Wedge
2009
  • Brian Giles
2010
  • Chris Carpenter
  • Michael Young
2011
  • Ryan Howard
  • Paul Konerko
2012
  • Derek Lowe
  • Mark Teixeira
  • Ron Washington
2013
  • Darrin Erstad
  • Bob Melvin
  • Dustin Pedroia

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f "About: History". Arizona Fall League official website. MLB Advanced Media, L.P. Retrieved 2011-12-07. 
  2. ^ "Desme Wins AFL MVP Award". CBS Sports. November 23, 2009. Retrieved 2010-01-30.  See Grant Desme, the 2009 recipient.
  3. ^ Baker, Geoff (November 23, 2010). "Can Dustin Ackley buck the Arizona Fall League MVP curse? The bar has been set pretty low". The Seattle Times Company. Retrieved 2011-12-07. 
  4. ^ Dernell Stenson Stats. Baseball Almanac website. Retrieved 2010-12-31.
  5. ^ a b "Stenson Award". Baseball Almanac. Retrieved 2010-12-31. 
  6. ^ "Hall of Fame". Arizona Fall League official website. MLB Advanced Media, L.P. Retrieved 2009-08-24. 

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