A Look At The 8 Brewers Prospects Heading to the Arizona Fall League

Which Brewers farmhands will be going to prospect finishing school?

Kansas City Royals v Milwaukee Brewers
Kansas City Royals v Milwaukee Brewers / Patrick Mulligan/GettyImages

As the 2023 minor league season wraps up for the affiliates of the Milwaukee Brewers, some prospects will have another opportunity to earn some extra reps before the season ends.

While these prospects will have a chance to boost their stock, most of them will be sent to the Arizona Fall League to get their feet under them post-injury. Six of the eight prospects that Milwaukee is sending to the AFL have spent time on the injured list this season. Each of the Brewers prospects will be playing for the Surprise Saguaros this year.

The crop of Brewers prospects in the Arizona Fall League from last season included breakout prospects such as Tyler Black and Logan Henderson, and the young flamethrower currently in the big leagues in Abner Uribe.

For the 2023 Arizona Fall League, Milwaukee will send a mix of highly touted draft picks, recent trade acquisitions, and a couple of undrafted free agents. All eight of the prospects that Milwaukee is sending this year will be making their Arizona Fall League debuts.

Brewers Hitters in the Fall League

Eric Brown Jr. - SS

Eric Brown Jr. was the 27th overall selection of the 2022 MLB Draft by the Milwaukee Brewers and was ranked the Brewers #10 prospect by MLB.com. Brown spent the 2023 season working his way up to AA Biloxi while battling two stints on the injured list. He played in 72 games across three levels in 2023, slashing .255/.358/.354 with 14 extra-base hits and 39 stolen bases.

He struggled with consistency in 2023, posting an OPS of .906 and .839 in May and September, respectively, but struggled to a combined OPS of just over .500 in April, June, and August.

Hendry Mendez - OF

As a Brewers splash out of international free agency in 2021, Hendry Mendez broke onto the scene in 2021 and 2022, moving quickly to High-A as a 19-year-old this season. Mendez is ranked as the #27 Brewers prospect by MLB.com and even ranks as high as #14 on Fangraphs.

Mendez battled between injuries during the 2023 season, also sustaining two stints on the 7-day injured list, and never got time to settle in with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. Mendez slashed .258/.324/.679 over 66 minor league games this season, and the Brewers hope to give him more opportunities in Surprise this fall.

Wes Clarke - 1B

After a great 16 games in AA Biloxi to end the 2022 season, former 10th-round pick Wes Clarke has broken onto the scene as a power bat for the Shuckers in 2023. After slashing just .122/.328/.163 with no home runs over 16 April contests, Clarke turned his season around significantly after an initial struggle. Clarke slashed .241/.392/.497 in 116 games this season, clubbing 26 home runs and driving in 80 while walking 89 times. Clarke's second-half breakout included 32 extra-base hits, including 18 home runs, while producing a .980 OPS over his final 63 games.

Brewers Pitchers in the Fall League

Joseph Hernandez - RHP

After initially being signed by the Seattle Mariners as an international free agent in 2017, Joseph Hernandez made his way to Milwaukee this January in a trade that sent Justin Topa to Seattle. After a 2022 season that saw Hernandez throw 116.2 innings over 22 starts while striking out 143 for the Modesto Nuts, Hernandez struggled out of the gate and dealt with arm issues for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers.

Hernandez was placed on the injured list on June 1st, and wouldn't return to action until August 8th. He has posted a 2.70 ERA in 10 innings since returning from injury, and his season ERA sits at a respectable 4.14.

Adam Seminaris - LHP

Adam Seminaris started the season in AA Biloxi and had a season full of ups and downs. After coming over from the Angels in the Hunter Renfroe trade, Seminaris had a very rough April, posting a 7.85 ERA over 4 starts. He had success in May, lowering his ERA by 2 total runs by having success in three starts.

He was placed on the 7-day injured list on May 22nd, where he would eventually be transferred to the 60-day, and wouldn't return until the start of August. Seminaris has struggled to a 5.59 ERA since his return.

Justin Yeager - LHP

Justin Yeager was a 33rd-round pick by the Atlanta Braves in the 2019 MLB Draft and was the final piece of the trade that brought William Contreras and Joel Payamps to Milwaukee. He has a career 3.15 ERA over four minor league seasons, topping at AA, and his K/9 in the minors sits at 13.5. Yeager has spent most of the 2023 season on the injured list, and last threw a pitch for Biloxi on May 11th. In three appearances this year, Yeager threw 2.1 innings of one-hit ball over three appearances.

Justin King - LHP

Justin King was a 2022 free agent signing who spent parts of 2022 with the Brisbane Bandits of the Australian League and the Florence Y'alls of the Frontier League. He played college baseball at the University of Alabama as a position player before completing his eligibility as a two-way player at the University of Louisiana-Monroe. He spent time on the injured list this season, as well, missing most of June and July due to two separate IL stints.

King spent the 2023 season with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, where he posted a 2.93 ERA in 30.2 innings. He struck out 54 while walking 25, and held opponents to a .205 batting average against.

Shane Smith - RHP

After the Brewers took a chance on him as an undrafted free agent with just over 10 college innings pitched in 2021, Shane Smith had a breakout 2023 season, leading to a promotion to AA Biloxi. Smith came into Milwaukee's system as a starting pitcher, but the Brewers moved him to a multi-inning reliever after he signed, and it has paid dividends. Smith has posted a combined 1.98 ERA over 59.2 innings (39 appearances) between three levels this season. He posted the highest K/BB% in the entire Brewers system in 2023 at 28.0, and he struck out 37% of the batters that he faced.