Hey, it’s Drew again for another segment from the Arizona Fall League. †I hope everyone has enjoyed our 2 guest bloggers from the Reds, Carlos Fisher and Chris Valaika. †These guys did a great job adding to my accounts thus far and provided some interesting information about themselves and their experiences out here. †Another week of games is in the books, and the Javelinas still find themselves at the top of the National division. †I realize that this league is meant for its talented participants to showcase their abilities, but it sure makes things a lot more enjoyable when your team wins ballgames. †There really is no substitute for playing a hard nine innings and coming out on top, and I feel lucky to be able to be apart of a team that is capable of doing this frequently. †
This past week offered somewhat of a shake up from the usual Monday to Saturday games out here. †Last Friday night, the Rising Stars game was held in Surprise. †This contest featured a couple of players from each organization competing in an American vs. National division showdown. †The game proved to be very entertaining, as our National division came out on top with a bases loaded walk to myself to end the night. †The American division got out on top early in the contest with two 2-run homers in the second inning. †We were blanked in both the hits and runs column early on by Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson. †He had all of his pitches working well, and it showed as he left the game with zeroes across the board. †We were able to chip away throughout the game and make a break through in the eighth inning to take the lead, only to be tied back up in the top of the ninth. †Two hits and an intentional walk in the bottom half of the inning had me staring at a bases loaded situation. †I was able to lay off a few close pitches and work the base on balls which allowed us to plate the game winning run. †This was a really gratifying win for us because we had fought hard throughout the night and ended up on top. †Good times!
Outside of the baseball, things have been relatively slow around the Reds’ household. †We have made a few trips to Scottsdale to visit friends and catch a little bit of the night scene, but other than that, we have relaxed and tried to follow the games of the World Series. †Hopefully, Philadelphia can come up with a little better forecast and get the remaining games in. †
This concludes this week’s run down of events, and I’ll be sure to fill everyone in next time with the new happenings. †Any questions or comments will be welcomed!
Hi everyone, this is Chris Valaika coming to you from the Arizona Fall League. A little about myself, I am a 23 year old shortstop from Santa Barbara, California. I was born in Santa Monica, moved to Valencia where I spent my childhood. There I was the oldest of 4 boys and a sister. Those were some interesting times growing up with that many people in one house. I then played my high school ball at Hart High School. Where my brother Patrick is currently the shortstop. After high school I was recruited to play at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Where ironically, my brother Matt is currently the shortstop. I guess we are a package deal. After my third year at UCSB I was fortunate enough to be drafted in the 3rd round by the Reds. Let me tell you that was an amazing day. To hear your name called over the internet and know that all the hard work you have put in has payed off and gave you an opportunity to play professional baseball, what a feeling. I am currently finished with my second full season of pro ball now and have played in some pretty amazing facilities such as Dayton and Chattanooga. I look forward to next year where I hope to get a chance to play in Louisville.
Well, enough about me. The Fall League thus far has been outstanding. Being able to be around such quality players day in and day out has really been great. Getting consistent at bats against the some of the best pitchers from other organizations is really going to help me in my development as a young player. I get the opportunity to play 40 more games and work on my skills not only at shortstop, but all around the field. As you all already know from Drew’s blog, I am living with 6 other Reds players and that tends to be some fun times. Last night, Justin “Red” Turner and I drove down to Tucson to see the USC Trojans take on Arizona. We sat in the USC section right behind the band and watch the Trojans try to give Arizona the game. All in all USC pulled it out and made the drive home for us a little more pleasant. Fight On. Also, earlier this week all 8 of us Reds here had a great dinner with Walt Jocketty and the entire front office staff. That was a great dinner and very cool to have such high ups in the organization befriend you and plan a night just for us. I know we all appreciated that night.
It is Sunday, so I am going to wrap this up so I can get down to the pool, watch some football, and start the barbecue. Hope I can talk to ya’ll again soon.
Hello once again everyone! †We’ve just completed our second week of games out here in Arizona, and our Javelinas team has been able to maintain our top spot in the division. †We have cooled off somewhat from our hot start, but we’ve managed to keep winning games when they are needed in order to hold our position. †Today, we squared off with the Peoria Saguaros in †a marathon game that lasted every bit of 4 hours. †I know that this game, which ended 18-11 in our favor, may pale up to the Mesa/Surprise game a few days ago that ended 28-1, but it was definitely a grind for us all. †It was one of those games that seemed to never end. The hitters found every possible opportunity to find holes for hits, and the pitchers found misfortune because of this. †There were also two scary moments during the game that lengthened the time even more. †Taylor Green of the Brewers was hit in the face with a pitch while hitting that resulted in a broken nose. †He seemed to be doing fine after the game, except for the swelling and pain in his face. †Stephan Gartrell of the White Sox dove for a ball in right field for the Saguaros, and I believe he separated his shoulder. †We Javelina players were not completely sure of the effects of his injury, but we knew it was not good as he exited the field on a cart. †Hopefully these guys get to feeling better soon!
Well, things around the Reds’ household have been relatively relaxed this past week. †I’m sure y’all got to meet Carlos Fisher through his guest blog that he posted a few days ago. †We will try to mix in more of our guys in the near future so that you can get to know all of us a little better. †There have been few opportunities for us to do much the past week as the games have basically kept us occupied. †Generally upon completing our day after a game, we will return home and relax for a couple of hours before we begin preparing dinner for ourselves. †Most of us enjoy grilling out and cooking for ourselves, so the cameraderie of this has been fun. †We usually prepare steaks or chicken breasts for ourselves on our back patio grill and pool together side dishes to eat. †There is always the occasional night out at a restaurant, but we try to take advantage of the cooking situation at home as much as possible. †
One thing that we have tuned into most every night of the past week were the MLB divisional series. †Although the Phillies rolled through the Dodgers relatively easily, the Rays/Red Sox series was very entertaining to watch. †I think most of us were glad to see some new faces in the World Series this year, especially since it will be Tampa’s first trip ever. †Many of us agree that it will make for some exciting nights of tv watching this next week. †
This pretty much sums up the past week of games and activities from myself and the other Reds’ guys. †I’ll be back on next week to keep the updates coming and possibly provide another guest blogger in the process. †Hope everyone has a great week!
Hello everyone this is Carlos Fisher coming to you from the Arizona Fall League, MILB has ask me to write a one time blog to let ever one out know I little about my self and my experience thus far in Arizona. Well to start of I’m playing for the Poeria Javelinas here in the fall league a team made up of players from the Yankees, Mariners, Rays, and lets not forget those Cincinnati Reds which is the organization that I play for. I was drafted in the 11th round out of Lewis&Clark State which is located in Lewiston ID.I spent this last season in Chattanooga AA and Louisville AAA had some up’s and down’s but I believe I turned in a pretty good year.
Duarte Ca, is where I have called home for all 25 years of my life it is a small city that is about 30 miles east of Downtown Los Angeles.It was at Duarte High that I was first introduced to pro ball being drafted by the Padres in the 15th round, I did not sign and choose the college road which if you ask me it was the right thing for me to do
Hello again, everyone! †This is Drew here, and I’m ready to †update you on the first week of games from the Arizona Fall League. †The Peoria Javelinas have gotten off to a nice start, winning three of the first five games. †We have gotten solid pitching and defense from our guys to complement some nice offensive sprees. †With the array of talent across the league, I feel that our team has done a nice job of capitalizing on opportunities, and that is why we have been able to be successful in our first week of games. †Several of our players have impressed me, but I think one guy that stands out so far has been Carlos Triunfel of the Seattle Mariners. †He has displayed some great offensive games as well as some nice plays in the field. †One thing that is extraordinary about Carlos is that he is only 18 years of age! †I can’t believe how mature he plays the game since most of us guys are between the ages of 21-26. †Obviously many other guys have done great things so far, but he is one that sticks out in my mind.
Outside of the field, the Reds guys and myself have continued to enjoy ourselves with our living situation. †Anytime you have seven guys living in a house to themselves, there is bound to be some fun times. †Sean Watson and Justin Turner have become regulars to a high-speed †go-cart track that is just down the street from us. †I was able to swing in and watch them race after a workout today, and it is pretty entertaining to watch because the carts get going up to 45 mph! †I’m sure we will all experience the carts at some point although most of us have not been yet. †Other than this, we have had a little less overall free time since we play games most everyday of the week. †We get done at the field around 4 o’clock for home games, and a †little later for away games because of the travel back to Peoria. †Therefore, we usually only have time to get back and prepare dinner for ourselves, or maybe get a weight workout in beforehand.
This has pretty much been the extent of the past week with the guys from the Reds, so I’ll be ready to give another update on us in about a week! †Take care everyone!