The Arizona Fall League won’t begin until next week, but the Oakland Athletics are already making alterations to their AFL contingent. Right-hander Sam Bragg is joining the Mesa Solar Sox roster. He takes the place of Norge Ruiz, who is being shelved with a right elbow strain.
Bragg is a returning participant to the AFL. Last season, the reliever had a 1.98 ERA in 13.2 innings for the AFL champion Solar Sox. Bragg also pitched in the AFL’s Rising Stars game. In 2017, he spent the entire season with the Texas League champion Midland RockHounds. In 68.1 innings, Bragg had a 3.03 ERA. He saved six of seven opportunities and struck-out 56 while walking 16. Bragg also threw five scoreless innings in the post-season for Midland. He has earned a title ring with the RockHounds in each of the past two seasons.
Ruiz ended the season on the Stockton Ports’ disabled list, but the A’s were hopeful that he would be recovered for the Fall League. The off-season free agent signing out of Cuba threw only 57.2 innings this season thanks to delays with securing a US work visa and injury. He had a 4.37 ERA and a 42:15 K:BB for the DSL A’s, AZL A’s and Stockton.
The Solar Sox begin their AFL title defense on Tuesday, Oct. 10 in Scottsdale. The game is at 6:35pm.
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