Arizona Fall League

Arizona Fall League
Arizona Fall League logo
Sport Baseball
Founded 1992
No. of teams 6
Country USA
Most recent
champion(s)
Peoria Javelinas (2017)
Most titles Glendale Desert Dogs (6)
Peoria Javelinas (6)
Official website Official website

The Arizona Fall League is an off-season league owned and operated by Major League Baseball[1] which operates during the autumn in Arizona, United States, at six different baseball 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 draft to determine the players who will go to Arizona.[1] 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. Likewise, Tim Tebow played for the Scorpions during his transition to professional baseball.[2] Other notable ballplayers who have played in the Arizona Fall League include Derek Jeter, Dustin Pedroia, Mike Piazza, Albert Pujols, Jimmy Rollins, Bryce Harper, David Wright, Mitch Haniger, Aaron Judge, and Mike Trout.

Current teams

Division Team Major League Affiliates City Stadium Capacity
East Mesa Solar Sox Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Angels, Oakland Athletics, Mesa, Arizona Sloan Park 15,000
Salt River Rafters Arizona Diamondbacks, Colorado Rockies, Miami Marlins, Minnesota Twins, Washington Nationals Scottsdale, Arizona Salt River Fields at Talking Stick 11,000
Scottsdale Scorpions Cincinnati Reds, Houston Astros, New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, San Francisco Giants Scottsdale, Arizona Scottsdale Stadium 11,200
West Glendale Desert Dogs Baltimore Orioles, Chicago White Sox, Cleveland Indians, Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Yankees Glendale, Arizona Camelback Ranch 10,300
Peoria Javelinas Atlanta Braves, Milwaukee Brewers, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners, Tampa Bay Rays Peoria, Arizona Peoria Sports Complex 10,714
Surprise Saguaros Kansas City Royals, Pittsburgh Pirates, St. Louis Cardinals, Texas Rangers, Toronto Blue Jays Surprise, Arizona Surprise Stadium 11,000
Current team locations:
(Maricopa County, Arizona shown)
  East Division
  West Division

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
2014 Salt River Rafters Peoria Javelinas
2015 Scottsdale Scorpions Surprise Saguaros
2016 Mesa Solar Sox Surprise Saguaros
2017 Peoria Javelinas 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.[3]

Joe Black MVP Award winners
Year Player Organization Position Team Ref
2002 Ken Harvey Kansas City RoyalsFirst basemanScottsdale Scorpions
2003 Jason Dubois Chicago CubsOutfielderMesa Solar Sox
2004 Chris Shelton Detroit TigersDesignated hitterGrand Canyon Rafters
2005 Eric Duncan New York YankeesThird basemanGrand Canyon Rafters
2006 Chip Cannon Toronto Blue JaysFirst basemanPhoenix Desert Dogs
2007 Sam Fuld Chicago CubsOutfielderMesa Solar Sox
2008 Tommy Hanson Atlanta BravesPitcherMesa Solar Sox
2009 Grant Desme Oakland AthleticsOutfielderPhoenix Desert Dogs
2010 Dustin Ackley Seattle MarinersSecond basemanPeoria Javelinas[4]
2011 Nolan Arenado Colorado RockiesThird basemanSalt River Rafters
2012 Chris McGuiness Texas RangersFirst basemanSurprise Saguaros
2013 Kris Bryant Chicago CubsThird basemanMesa Solar Sox
2014 Greg Bird New York YankeesFirst basemanScottsdale Scorpions[5]
2015 Adam Engel Chicago White SoxOutfielderGlendale Desert Dogs
2016 Gleyber Torres New York YankeesShortstopScottsdale Scorpions[6]
2017 Ronald Acuña Atlanta BravesOutfielderPeoria Javelinas[7]

Stenson Award

The Dernell Stenson Sportsmanship Award was created in 2004, in memory of Dernell Stenson,[8] 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.[9]

Stenson Award Winners
Year Player Organization Position Team Ref
2004 Mark Teahen Kansas City RoyalsThird basemanPhoenix Desert Dogs[9]
2005 Andre Ethier Oakland AthleticsOutfielderPhoenix Desert Dogs[9]
2006 Kevin Frandsen San Francisco GiantsInfielderScottsdale Scorpions[9]
2007 Sam Fuld Chicago CubsOutfielderMesa Solar Sox[9]
2008 Jason Donald Philadelphia PhilliesInfielderMesa Solar Sox[9]
2009 Russ Mitchell Los Angeles DodgersFirst basemanPeoria Javelinas[9]
2010 Steve Lombardozzi Jr. Washington NationalsThird basemanScottsdale Scorpions[9]
2011 Kevin Mattison Miami MarlinsOutfielderSurprise Saguaros[9]
2012 Cole Kimball Washington NationalsPitcherSalt River Rafters[9]
2013 Garin Cecchini Boston Red SoxThird basemanSurprise Saguaros[9]
2014 Patrick Kivlehan Seattle MarinersThird basemanSurprise Saguaros[10]
2015 Yadiel Rivera Milwaukee BrewersInfielderSurprise Saguaros[11]
2016 Austin Nola Miami MarlinsCatcherMesa Solar Sox[12]
2017 Eric Filia Seattle MarinersOutfielderPeoria Javelinas[7]

Hall of Fame

The Arizona Fall League Hall of Fame was created in 2001. The AFL has had over 1,200 players who came through the league reach Major League Baseball. Additionally, 18 former AFL||Managers/players have gone on to manage a Major League club after managing in the league. To be considered by the selection committee, a player must be recognized at Major League Baseball level as a Rookie of the Year, a Most Valuable Player, an All-Star, or a Gold Glove or Silver Slugger Award winner.

Year Inductee AFL Year AFL Team Role
2001 Dusty Baker 1992Scottsdale ScorpionsManager
2001 Nomar Garciaparra 1994Scottsdale ScorpionsShortstop
2001 Derek Jeter 1994Chandler DiamondbacksShortstop
2001 Mike Piazza 1992Sun Cities Solar SoxCatcher
2002 Jason Giambi 1994Peoria JavelinasFirst baseman
2002 Jerry Manuel 1994Maryvale SaguarosManager
2003 Shawn Green 1992Scottsdale ScorpionsOutfielder
2003 Todd Helton 1996Peoria JavelinasFirst baseman
2003 Mike Scioscia 1997Peoria JavelinasManager
2004 Garret Anderson 1993Tempe RaftersOutfielder
2004 Tony Peña 2000Maryvale SaguarosManager
2004 Albert Pujols 2000Scottsdale ScorpionsThird baseman
2005 Troy Percival 1992Scottsdale ScorpionsPitcher
2005 Terry Francona 1992
1994
Grand Canyon Rafters
Scottsdale Scorpions
Coach
Manager
2006 Roy Halladay 1998Grand Canyon RaftersPitcher
2006 Grady Little 1992Grand Canyon RaftersManager
2006 Alfonso Soriano 1998Grand Canyon RaftersSecond baseman
2007 Jermaine Dye 1995Sun Cities Solar SoxOutfielder
2007 Derrek Lee 1995-1996Sun Cities Solar SoxFirst baseman
2007 Ken Macha 1994Tempe RaftersManager
2007 Torii Hunter 1998Phoenix Desert DogsOutfielder
2008 Jimmy Rollins 2000Maryvale SaguarosShortstop
2008 Eric Wedge 1993Tucson JavelinasCatcher
2009 Brian Giles 1994Sun Cities Solar SoxOutfielder
2010 Chris Carpenter 1996Phoenix Desert DogsPitcher
2010 Michael Young 2000Grand Canyon RaftersShortstop
2011 Ryan Howard 2004Phoenix Desert DogsFirst baseman
2011 Paul Konerko 1996Sun Cities Solar SoxFirst baseman
2012 Derek Lowe 1993
1995
Sun Cities Solar Sox
Peoria Javelinas
Pitcher
2012 Mark Teixeira 2002Peoria JavelinasThird baseman
2012 Ron Washington 1992
1993
Sun Cities Solar Sox
Tucson Javelinas
Coach
2013 Darin Erstad 1995Tempe RaftersOutfielder
2013 Bob Melvin 1999Maryvale SaguarosManager
2013 Dustin Pedroia 2004Scottsdale ScorpionsShortstop
2014 Carl Crawford 2001Maryvale SaguarosOutfielder
2014 Matt Holliday 2002–2003Mesa Solar SoxOutfielder
2015 Andrew McCutchen 2007Phoenix Desert DogsOutfielder
2016 Max Scherzer 2007

2008

Scottsdale Scorpions

Phoenix Desert Dogs

Pitcher
2016 Mike Trout 2011Scottsdale ScorpionsOutfielder
2016 David Wright 2003Peoria SaguarosThird baseman
Ref: 2001–2013 2014 2015 2016

See also

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 "About: History". Arizona Fall League official website. MLB Advanced Media, L.P. Retrieved December 7, 2011.
  2. "Tim Tebow makes Arizona Fall League debut, crashes into wall". Retrieved November 19, 2016.
  3. "Desme Wins AFL MVP Award". CBS Sports. November 23, 2009. Retrieved January 30, 2010. See Grant Desme, the 2009 recipient.
  4. 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 December 7, 2011.
  5. "Yankees' Bird named Arizona Fall League MVP". MLB.com. Retrieved November 15, 2014.
  6. "Yankees teenage prospect Gleyber Torres named 2016 Arizona Fall League MVP". CBS Sports. Retrieved November 19, 2016.
  7. 1 2 "Braves' Acuna caps breakout with MVP award". MiLB.com. Retrieved November 18, 2017.
  8. Dernell Stenson Stats. Baseball Almanac website. Retrieved December 31, 2010.
  9. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 "Stenson Award". Baseball Almanac. Retrieved December 31, 2010.
  10. "Mariners prospect Patrick Kivlehan wins AFL's Dernell Stenson Sportsmanship Award". Retrieved November 19, 2016.
  11. "Yadiel Rivera wins Fall League Stenson Award". Retrieved November 19, 2016.
  12. Kramer, Daniel (November 19, 2016). "Nola wins Fall League's Dernell Stenson Sportsmanship Award". MLB.com. Retrieved November 19, 2016.
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