For the first time in the Arizona Fall League season, the Salt River Rafters went to extra innings Thursday night. Jack Brannigan was the lone Pittsburgh Pirates position player to start the game for Salt River.
In addition, Cameron Junker made a relief appearance.
Salt River had the lead, and it seemed like smooth sailing, but their bullpen blew a 9-3 lead at one point. Eventually, Glendale took a 10-9 lead in the tenth inning and went on to win by the same score.
In addition, four teams now have nine wins on the season, including Salt River.
The Notre Dame product came into Thursday’s game stumbling. Brannigan struck out three out of four at-bats in his previous start and looked extremely uncomfortable.
Brannigan received an 0-1 four-seamer up and in on his first at-bat Thursday night. Brannigan wasted no time and smashed the fastball 383 ft and 105.1 mph for his second homer of the fall league.
In addition, Pittsburgh Pirates prospects now own six of Salt River’s 12 home runs on the season with Jase Bowen (two), Carter Bins (two), and Brannigan (two).
In his next two at-bats, Brannigan brought us back to reality with back-to-back strikeouts but redeemed himself in the sixth with a single.
In addition, Brannigan’s single was a soft 64.7 mph roller to second base.
Brannigan finished the night going 2-5 with a homer, a run scored, an RBI, and two strikeouts.
Brannigan’s strikeout numbers are extremely concerning. Entering into Friday, Brannigan now has struck out 20 times (third worst).
Junker entered the game for Salt River in the middle of the third inning. Junker quickly worked on Glendale’s lineup and pitched a perfect 0.2 innings with a strikeout.
In addition, Junker needed only five pitches to get through the inning, and he used three sliders and two four-seamers to get the job done.