Amarillo, TX – The Amarillo Sod Poodles will return to HODGETOWN after a two-week road trip to kick off the second half of the Double-A season starting Tuesday, June 28. The Kansas City Royals’ Double-A affiliate, the Northwest Arkansas Naturals visit Amarillo for the first time since the 2019 season.
Amarillo, TX – The Amarillo Sod Poodles will return to HODGETOWN after a two-week road trip to kick off the second half of the Double-A season starting Tuesday, June 28. The Kansas City Royals’ Double-A affiliate, the Northwest Arkansas Naturals visit Amarillo for the first time since the 2019 season. The two clubs split their first series of the year at the end of April and the Sod Poodles own an 11-9 record against the Naturals in the regular season.
The Sod Poodles roster currently boasts six of the Arizona Diamondbacks’ top 30 prospects including five in the top 10 led by outfielder Corbin Carroll (No.1). Behind him are four of the current five starters in the Amarillo rotation in Blake Walston (No. 3), Bryce Jarvis (No. 6), Brandon Pfaadt (No. 8), and Slade Cecconi (No. 9).
The Naturals have a bevy of top prospects on their current roster with nine of the Royals’ top 30 prospects highlighted by shortstop Nick Lofton (No.4) and right-handed pitcher Alec Marsh (No. 9).
Kings of the Strikeout
Sod Poodles right-hander Brandon Pfaadt currently leads the Texas League in strikeouts with 96 through his first 13 starts in 2022. His total not only leads the league but ranks sixth in all minor league baseball after he tied his career-high with 12 strikeouts his last time out. Pfaadt carried a perfect game into the 7th inning against the Corpus Christi Hooks on June 23 and recorded the 17th quality start in his first 35 professional games after being selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 5th round of the 2020 MLB Draft out of Bellarmine University. Pfaadt began the 2021 season outside of the D-backs’ top 30 list but climbed to No. 26 following a breakout campaign that saw him finish second in the farm system with eight wins and 160 strikeouts. He began his 2022 campaign at No. 10 and has seen that number dip into the single digits with players ahead of him graduating from the “prospect rankings”.
RHP Alec Marsh sits right behind Pfaadt for the most strikeouts in the Texas League with 89 through his first 13 starts in 2022. Marsh was selected by the Kansas City Royals with the first pick in the Competitive-Balance B round of the 2019 MLB Draft out of Arizona State University. Entering this upcoming series, Marsh is 1-6 with a 6.95 ERA.
The two pitchers went head-to-head in Springdale on April 30 with Pfaadt getting the better of the Naturals, earning the win after picking up one of his six quality starts of the year. Pfaadt went 6.0 IP and allowed just five hits and three earned runs while striking out seven. Marsh went four innings that night and allowed five hits, three of which were home runs in a 7-5 Amarillo win.
The Naturals rotation will also sprinkle in top prospects LHP Angel Zerpa (No. 10), LHP Anthony Veneziano (No. 14), RHP Will Klein (No. 16), RHP Noah Murdock (No. 20), and LHP Dante Biasi.
The Sod Poodles have been powered all season by Arizona’s No. 1 prospect OF Corbin Carroll. Carroll was drafted out of high school by the Diamondbacks in the first round of the 2019 MLB Draft, and the Seattle native is batting .317 this year while leading the Sod Poodles in hits (70), home runs (16), triples (8), stolen bases (20), walks (40), and OPS (1.084).
Infielder Drew Stankiewicz has been one of the hottest hitters for Amarillo throughout June and is hitting .340 in 15 games played. Stankiewicz has pitched in with six doubles, three home runs, and 11 RBI. Another bat in the Sod Poodles lineup to keep an eye on will be Eduardo Diaz who is hitting .284 this month with four doubles, two home runs, and 12 RBI in 18 games played.
Northwest Arkansas is led offensively by Logan Porter who is hitting .325 this season with 11 doubles, seven home runs, and 27 RBI. Porter ranks 2nd in OBP (.465), 5th in OPS (.994), 6th in AVG (.325), and 10th in SLG (.529) in the Texas League this season.
Royals’ No. 18 Maikel Garcia also currently calls Springdale home. Garcia ranks 3rd in the Texas League with 74 hits, is tied for 3rd with 22 stolen bases, and 4th with 19 doubles.
The Sod Poodles lead or near the top in pretty much every offensive category in the Texas League this season while the Naturals rank 3rd in runs scored in the Texas League, 4th in hits, and 5th in team batting average.
What’s On Deck
With the return to action at HODGETOWN comes another week of great promotions and family fun. The week will feature all the same great daily promotions, in-game entertainment, and a huge weekend of fireworks and specialty jerseys to celebrate Independence Weekend.
The holiday weekend typically brings in the largest crowds to downtown Amarillo and the team is expecting that trend to continue in 2022. Sod Poodle fans set a franchise record with a sell-out crowd of 7,477 on July 4 last year and saw the largest crowd of the season in 2019 with 7,451.
All single-game tickets for the series are on sale now and going fast! For more information, or to purchase tickets, please visit www.SodPoodles.com or call the HODGETOWN Box Office at (806) 803-9547 or email [email protected]
A summary of details for each game is below:
Tuesday, June 28 vs. Northwest Arkansas – 7:05 P.M.
- Taco Tuesday presented by Taco Bell and $2 Tuesday
- Taco Tuesday – Two tacos for just $3 all game long!
- $2 Tuesday – Lawn, standing room, and select seating bowl tickets are only $2
- Kids run the bases postgame (12 & Under)
- Gates Open at 6:00 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 vs. Northwest Arkansas – 7:05 p.m.
- Wiener Wednesday presented by Texas Ford Dealers – Enjoy $1 hot dogs all game long at all HODGETOWN concession stands.
- Copa de la Diversion – Pointy Boots de Amarillo
- Gates open at 6:00 p.m.
Thursday, June 30 vs. Northwest Arkansas – 7:05 p.m.
- Thirsty Thursday™ presented by Barnes Jewelry - $2 domestic drafts and fountain sodas!
- $5 Beer Bat refills.
- Gates open at 6:00 p.m.
Friday, July 1 vs Northwest Arkansas – 7:05 PM
- Friday Night Fireworks - Kick off the weekend with an amazing America-Themed firework show shortly after the final out of the night is recorded! Fireworks presented by City Federal Credit Union
- Gates open – 6:05 p.m.
S**aturday, July 2 vs Northwest Arkansas – 7:05 PM**
- MORE FIREWORKS – America-themed fireworks show presented by Amarillo Steam Team
- The Sod Poodles will don their third specialty jersey of the season.
S**unday, July 3 vs. Northwest Arkansas – 6:05 p.m.**
- Independence Weekend Fireworks Extravaganza – presented by Bell
- Hometown Hero Sunday presented by Bell – discounted tickets for all military and active first responders!
- Tyler’s Amazing Balancing Act
- Gates open – 5:05 p.m.