Milwaukee Brewers: Eight Prospects Sent To Arizona Fall League
By David Gasper
The Arizona Fall League Rosters were announced on Thursday and the Milwaukee Brewers will be sending eight minor leaguers to the AFL this year.
The Brewers prospects will be on the Peoria Javelinas of the AFL this season. The Javelinas are made up of prospects from the Padres, Mariners, Rays, and Braves, as well as the Brewers.
There is a wide range in the level of prospects the Brewers are sending to Arizona this year, which includes their top overall prospect, Keston Hiura.
Top 30 Prospects
2B Keston Hiura
Hiura is clearly the biggest name that the Brewers are sending to the prospect finishing grounds known as the AFL. The 2017 first round pick has a .291 batting average with 33 doubles, 13 home runs, and 14 stolen bases this season.
He’s the 26th best prospect in baseball according to MLB Pipeline, and should make his major league debut sometime next season.
OF Trent Grisham
Another former Brewers first round pick is heading to the AFL. Outfielder Trent Grisham was the Crew’s first pick back in 2015 and, after struggling for the first few years in the pros, Grisham has learned patience this season.
Grisham has drawn 61 walks this year and has struck out only 84 times. The batting average and the power is still a work in progress for Grisham as he’s only hitting .227 with seven home runs in 2018. The Milwaukee Brewers are likely hoping that the AFL can provide a permanent boost to Grisham’s game.
C Mario Feliciano
Feliciano has struggled this season. In 42 games at High-A Carolina, Feliciano owned a .205/.282/.329 slash line with only three home runs. Those numbers earned him a demotion down to the Rookie level Arizona Brewers where his numbers have rebounded in a small sample size.
While more known for his defense, getting Feliciano’s offense going will be crucial to him moving up the organizational ladder.
Non-Top 30 Prospects
IF Weston Wilson
Wilson has had a pretty good 2018 season, earning a promotion to Double-A a while back. He has 23 doubles, 13 home runs, and 62 RBIs to go along with his .271 average across two levels this year.
Wilson is a utility player, having spent a lot of time at first base, third base, and the outfield this season. The 2016 17th round pick is still just 23 years old, but his ceiling is limited.
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RHP Bubba Derby
Derby was acquired along with Jacob Nottingham in the Khris Davis trade and is coming off his second straight season in Triple-A Colorado Springs. He had a great season in 2017, but has struggled a bit to the tune of a 4.49 ERA this year.
While Derby is still looking to make his major league debut, the AFL is a great opportunity for him to put the finishing touches on his skill set. He’s currently a starting pitcher, but his best chance at a big league spot with the Milwaukee Brewers might be in the bullpen.
LHP Daniel Brown
One of the few lefty pitching prospects in the Brewers system, Brown has been making steady progress through the minor leagues. After finishing with a 3.00 ERA last year in Low-A, Brown has a 4.12 ERA this season with High-A Carolina.
A former 7th round pick, Brown has pitched exclusively out of the bullpen this year and could be the next lefty specialist of the future for the Brewers.
RHP Miguel Sanchez
Sanchez has had a great season in 2018, pitching across three different levels this year. He’s spent most of his time in Double-A Biloxi and he has a 2.69 ERA overall on the season.
He also has 87 strikeouts in just 60.1 innings pitched this year and opponents are hitting just .211 against him. Those big strikeout numbers and his ability to miss bats gives Sanchez a lot of potential that might be worth keeping an eye on.
RHP Jon Olczak
Olczak is also having a tremendous season for the Biloxi Shuckers. He has a 1.46 ERA on the season and opponents have just a .188 batting average against him. In 55.2 innings, Olczak has 62 strikeouts.
He has also been pitching exclusively out of the bullpen in his big league career. While he isn’t known as a high profile prospect, if he continues to post numbers like he has this year, he’s going to find his way to the big leagues sooner or later. The AFL is a great spot for the Brewers to see what they really have in him as he’ll face off against some of the best talent in the minor leagues.
The Milwaukee Brewers are sending a few of their top prospects, including Keston Hiura as a way to smooth some of the rough edges in their profile. And for these non-top 30 guys, it’s way for the organization to find out how good they really are.