Russell, Rafters rally past Scorpions
Dodgers prospect slugs a go-ahead homer in the ninth inning
Playing time has been hard to come by for Kyle Russell. He may have bought himself some more on Saturday night.
The Dodgers prospect hit a go-ahead homer as first-place Salt River defeated Scottsdale, 4-3.
In a back-and-forth game Russell provided what proved to be the final blow in the top of the ninth inning. The 25-year-old outfielder led off the frame by taking Rafael Martin deep for his second homer of the fall.
Russell, who finished 2-for-4 with two runs scored, has played in seven on the Rafters' 23 games. The 2008 third-rounder is batting .259 with two homers and has posted an .866 OPS for Salt River. Russell had three hits in his last game on Oct. 26 against Surprise, giving him back-to-back multi-hit performances.
Russell had a strong season in the Southern League, batting .259 with 19 homers and 69 RBIs for Double-A Chattanooga, earning All-Star honors. The Texas native struggled in a late-season promotion to Triple-A, posting a .743 OPS for Albuquerque.
Nolan Arenado (Rockies) was 3-for-4 with a run scored and Adam Eaton (D-backs) smacked an RBI double for the Rafters. Astros' prospect Jay Austin walked twice and stole a base.
Rob Scahill, an eighth-rounder by the Rockies in 2009, earned his first win after allowing one hit in an inning of relief.
Boston prospects Wil Middlebrooks and Alex Hassan slugged solo homers for the Scorpions while Derek Norris, the Nationals' No. 5 prospect, had two hits and stole a base.
Robert Emrich is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.