Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Harper, Norris in AFL Rising Stars Game

Outfielder Bryce Harper and catcher Derek Norris have been chosen to represent the Nationals in Saturday's Arizona Fall League "Rising Stars Game."

The event, something of an all-star game for the AFL, will be televised live on MLB Network at 8 p.m. EDT.

Harper has been on a tear at the plate since a sluggish start to his fall season with the Scottsdale Scorpions. Over his last seven games, he's hitting .444 (12-for-27) with four homers, 15 RBI and a .963 slugging percentage. In 15 overall games, the 19-year-old is batting .276 with a .348 on-base percentage.

Norris has also been swinging a hot bat, with 11 hits over his last 21 at-bats. Overall, the 22-year-old catcher is hitting .356 with two homers, eight RBI and a .446 on-base percentage that ranks sixth in the AFL.


baseballswami said...

Hooray! Nats on TV tonight and Saturday. This should ease my withdrawal pains at least a little.

natsfan1a said...

Yay! Saturday will be a Nats double-header, with the AFL game first and the Taiwan game second. :-)

natsfan1a said...

Oh, wait. It's the other way around.

Eugene in Oregon said...


Do you realize that baseball has one of the greatest hypothesis-testing opportunities anyone could imagine within its grasp?

Normally, baseball fans (and writers) are forced to engage in lots of 'what if' thought experiments or other counter-factual arguments. But now the gods of baseball have a chance to actually turn one of those 'what ifs' into reality.

I'm talking, of course, about the apparently reputable stories linking Jim Riggleman to the managerial opening in St. Louis. They're not yet at the point of saying he's a shoo-in (or even that he'll get an interview), but he's being prominently mentioned by serious writers as a possibility.

On this -- and other Nats-focused sites -- I have repeatedly read that Riggleman is the worst manager of all times. People in this camp cite his career record, his favoritism toward veterans, his lack of strategic decision-making skills, etc. On the other hand, many Riggleman defenders have argued that he's never had a decent team to manage, even when he had decent players they ended up injured or traded, he was always brought into impossible-to-succeed situations, etc.

Well here you have it! If the baseball gods will arrange for him to manager the World Champion Cardinals -- particularly if Pujols comes back -- we can decide once and for all whether Riggleman is a real major league manger or not. So, regardless of what you think of Riggleman's skills (and you know who you are, you Riggleman haters), you've got to root for him to get the job so that you can test your hypothesis that 'even with the best team in the world' he'd be a terrible manager. And you Riggleman apologists, you've got a hope he gets the job so that you can prove yourselves right -- that given decent players he'd be a top-flight manager.

So, let's go Cardinals -- for sake of baseball science, hire Jim Riggleman!

Gonat said...

Riggleman joined the Cardinals organization in the minor league ranks and stayed for years as they told him then that he would be LaRussa's succesor. Riggleman moved on as he didn't think it was ever going to happen.

If this happens, it is huge and well deserved. Jim may have screwed up walking on the Nationals but it shouldn't define the rest of his life.

Gonat said...

Congrats to Norris and Harper. I am so pleased to see Derek's new approach at the plate.

Gonat said...

Getting ready to watch Michael Morse on tape delay. It is actually a little past 9AM Wednesday morning in Taiwan right now.

baseballswami said...

Anybody watching? Morse is playing FIRST BASE! Nice -- interesting cheering in the background. This is kind of cool, actually.

Anonymous said...

I bet Pujols leaves if they hire Riggleman. Any sane player would.

Gonat said...

Price just went up on Alex Gordon to get him in a trade. Just won the Gold Glove.

Also, 2 run HR from Bryce Harper + a single.

Gonat said...

So much for UZR, Brett Gardner doesn't win a Gold Glove

Anonymous said...

Bottom line Adam? Mark?

CF : Werth.
LF : Morse
RF: Harper (who just hit 2 hr and a single.

NOT Grady Sizemore. NOT Cocoa Crisp. NOT.

If they need a different lead-off hitter its going to have to come from the infield and that means replacing Desmond because lord knows you aren't going to replace Espinosa who had the highest Frangraphs WAR of position players this year.

Do you ACTUALLY believe Johnson is going to replace Desmond? I don't.

Now getting another pitcher or two who can anchor the top of the rotation that's a horse of a different color.

nats guy said...

Eugene In Oregon,

Hello from Corvallis to another transplanted Nats Fan.

baseballswami said...

Went to sleep last night with the vision of Morse hitting a crushed,rbi double off a wall. aaaaaah.

Mark'd said...

Morse hit that double so hard that it shook the plastic advertising temp sign out there. A true laser beam.

Anonymous said...

I'll have to record the game Saturday night and watch it some other time. I'll be glued to the (latest)college football game of the century! Roll Tide.

afl store said...

The selections are well deserved. They had a great back season.

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