Souza shines as Mesa remains unbeaten, 7-3

Maybe they should rename the Arizona Fall League taxi squad the “limousine squad.”

Slated to play only Wednesdays and Saturdays, center fielder Steven Souza Jr. instead played Friday for Mesa, and contributed two hits and three RBIs in a 7-3 defeat of the Surprise Saguaros in Arizona Fall League play.

Because it was a short week, Friday’s game counts as Saturday’s game for Souza. Taxi squad players get to start two games per week, and Souza is one of the taxi squad participants for Mesa. For this first week, there are no games scheduled for Saturday or Sunday, allowing Souza to go Friday.

Souza also scored a run, walked two times and stole three bases. Souza had an RBI single in a two-run first inning as Mesa led 2-0. Then in the third, Souza highlighted a three-run outburst with a two-run double as Mesa extended its lead to 5-0.

Kris Bryant also went 2-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs for the Solar Sox, who are now 3-0-1 in the first week of AFL competition.

Another Nationals prospect, right-hander Richie Mirowski, earned a hold with a scoreless seventh inning, striking out one and allowing no hits and no walks.
Dallas Beeler earned the victory, scattering three hits over three innings, allowing one run and striking out two.

Mesa is the league’s only unbeaten, and they have an early 2 1/2-game lead on Salt River and Scottsdale in the East Division.

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