The prized prospect in the Matt Holliday deal made his Raley Field debut tonight in his new hometown of Sacramento. The River Cats wasted no time pencilling him into the cleanup spot. He also got the start at third base, where many question whether he will stick, or eventually make the move to first base or designated hitter. While he didn’t do anything extraordinary in the field, he didn’t make any mistakes either. The Salt Lake Bees wasted little time testing his glove, as leadoff hitter Brad Coon hit a sharp grounder to the left of Wallace. Wallace made a diving effort to no avail. It wasn’t a play he should’ve made, but he didn’t exactly make a gold glove attempt. The other balls hit to him were routine, and he fielded them cleanly and threw perfect strikes to first. So far, so good.
At the plate, Wallace has that hitter’s presence about him. He showed good plate discipline, while still remaining aggresive. His first at bat resulted in a sharply hit groundout to first that would’ve been a double, say, if a runner were on first. Problem is, the River Cats only had one runner on the entire game. Angels’ prospect Sean O’Sullivan stole the show, throwing the first no hitter in Raley Field’s ten year history. In his second at bat, Wallace put up a good fight, but ultimately chopped an excuse-me check swing groundout to short. In his third and final at bat, he had shortstop Cliff Pennington on first, who drew the only walk from O’Sullivan. Wallace, though, popped out to short center field.
All in all, it’d be foolish to draw any conclusions from one game. Wallace was hitless, but so was the rest of the team. As I said, though, he has a promising presence at the plate. There’s no doubt that Wallace will hit at the big league level, and his glove was dependable enough to raise no questions at this point.
In other River Cats / A’s news, Justin Duchscherer will make a rehab appearance on Friday in Sacramento.