Three games into the Arizona Fall League season, it’s apparent that one team is standing out above the rest. Even at 1-2 the Scottsdale Scorpions have created quite a buzz in the Valley, not by what they’ve done, but by who they have. Affiliated with the Angels and Nationals among others, the Scorpions are home to the top two prospects in baseball, Washington’s Bryce Harper and Mike Trout from Los Angeles.
Harper, 18, split the season with Single-A Hagerstown and AA Harrisburg totaling .297/.392/.501, 17 HRs and 26 SBs at both stops while being the youngest player in the league. Trout, meanwhile, found his way into the 2011 Angel outfield. The 20-year-old was called up on two separate occasions this season after spending two years in the minors. Trout (.220/.281/.390) struggled early and late as he appeared overmatched. In August, however, his potential was on display during an eight game stretch (.400/.464/.920, 4 HRs). The Angels anticipate this particular hot streak, along with his performance at Double-A Arkansas (.326/.414/.544 in 91 games with 42 extra-base hits and 33 stolen bases), as a sign of things to come for the Minor League Player of the Year and have sent Trout to Scottsdale for more seasoning this fall. He had three hits in last night’s debut, a 7-3 Scorpion victory over the Phoenix Desert Dogs.
Joining Trout and Harper in Arizona is Angel catcher Hank Conger. Conger caught 59 games for LA this year, though he did little to prove he is their future at the position in his first full season in Anaheim (.209/.282/.356). At 23, Conger has only a year or two left on his prospect status. More ABs in winter ball can’t hurt.