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Saturday, December 3, 2022

AFL: Joely Rodriguez and Adrian Sampson Make Their Debuts

After Tyler Glasnow started the opener for Scottsdale on Tuesday and recorded just two outs, Joely Rodriguez started game two and had a better outing. Rodriguez lasted 2.1 innings, giving up one run on four hits, a walk and two strikeouts. He threw a total of 46 pitches, 27 for strikes. Scottsdale lost 6-3 on Wednesday to move to 1-1 on the season.

Rodriguez gave up two singles in the first inning, but a double play helped him stay out of trouble. He had a tough second inning, allowing a run on two hits, a walk, two stolen bases and two wild pitches. Rodriguez was able to get out of a two out jam by striking out Byron Buxton with runners on second and third. He then retired the only batter he faced in the third inning before being removed.

Josh Bell was the only Pirates player in the starting lineup. He was the designated hitter on Wednesday after playing first base in the opener. In his first plate appearance, Bell was facing Mark Appel, who hit him with a pitch. In the fourth inning, Bell singled on a ground ball off the third baseman’s glove. He came around and scored the second run of the game for Scottsdale. Leading off the sixth inning, Bell popped out to third base. Bell was pinch-hit for in the ninth inning.

Adrian Sampson pitched the ninth inning and retired the side in order on 12 pitches, seven went for strikes. He got a ground out back to him to lead-off the inning, followed by a pop out and a fly ball to center field.

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John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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Ben Swogger

Good stuff as always, John

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