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Twins prospects and Surprise Saguaros take second place in AFL

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A couple Twins prospects had standout performances, but it wasn’t enough to win the AFL championship.

Minor League Baseball: Arizona Fall League-Fall Stars Game
Nick Gordon, who hit lead-off in the AFL championship game, didn’t do so well.
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The seven Twins prospects who took part in this year’s Arizona Fall League (AFL) played for the Surprise Saguaros, who made it all the way to the AFL championship. The championship game was played yesterday, and alas, the Saguaros lost 6-1 to the Mesa Solar Sox.

Still, second place isn’t that bad, right? And some Twins prospects did well in the game. Twins’ prospect outfielder Tanner English, known for his defense much more than his bat, made a couple fine catches, including the one below.

Tanner reportedly made another web gem catch in the game, and was listed as one of the game’s top performers by MLB.com.

Also a top performer? Twins pitching prospect John Curtiss, who MLB.com said described as, “Easily the most impressive of the six Surprise pitchers, Curtiss required just 11 pitches to work a perfect eighth inning.”

Not all of the Twins prospects in the AFL took part in the championship game, but here’s how the ones who did fared:

Nick Gordon: 0-for-4, one strikeout.

Despite being named to the AFL All-Star Team and doing well overall in the AFL, Gordon didn’t do anything in the championship game. He hit lead-off, and failed to reach base in the game. He also committed a fielding error at short-stop. Not good.

Mason Melotakis: 1.0 inning pitched, 1 HR, 1 K.

Mason came in to pitch relief later in the game, and promptly gave up a home run to Cubs prospect Ian Happ. It was Happ’s second home run of the game. Not good.

Tanner English: 0-for-3, 3 strikeouts.

Let’s get real—Tanner was in this game for his defense. He hit last in the order, and struck out three times. His defense was good, but at the plate? Not good.

John Curtiss: 1.0 inning pitched, 0 Hs, 2 Ks.

Curtiss had by far the most impressive performance of any Twins prospect in the game. He was the last pitched for the Saguaros, and was dominant in his appearance. Perhaps this is an indication he has come back from his many early-career injuries and could be a valuable arm for the Twins system in the future? We can only hope.


The Twins prospects who took part in the AFL but not in the championship game were Mitch Garver (C), Stephen Gonsalves (LHP), and Randy Rosario (LHP).