Although the Salt River Rafters finished up with a seven game winning streak, they could not make it to the Arizona Fall League Championship game. The Rafters ended up with a 19-12 record, one-half game behind the Mesa Solar Sox. The next stop for these prospects of the Arizona Diamondbacks is a return to Salt River Fields at Talking Stick for Spring Training 2014.
Nick Ahmed: Unfortunately, the final numbers are more ammunition for those that say the shortstop is a good field/no hit player. In 64 at-bats, Ahmed finished with a line of .219/.329/.281 with one homer and six RBI’s. There will definitely be a place on a Major League roster for the 23-year old Ahmed but it probably will not come this season.
Jake Barrett: There is some thinking that the flame-throwing Barrett could end up being the closer for the D’backs in 2014. If AFL play is any indication, that talk should be tempered a bit. Although he totaled four saves on the year, Barrett was touched up a bit in three of his final four appearances. He managed to record the save in the final game of the season but gave up two hits and also surrendered runs in two of his prior three outings. There is no doubt Barrett is the closer of the future; it just may not come this season.
Mike Freeman: The second baseman had a pretty good stay in the AFL and got his name on the depth chart for infield prospects. The 26 year old Lamb had three doubles, drove in ten runs and had a line of .268/.354/.339. The middle infield is a clogged space in D’back land right now but Freeman got a chance to open some eyeballs here and in other organizations around baseball.
Henry Garcia: The lefty threw only one inning since our last report, a shutout frame on November 9th. He joined the Rafters’ roster later in the season when a tired arm sent home Andrew Chafin. Garcia’s 5.40 ERA is deceptive because in one outing, he gave up three runs in a third of an inning. Outside of that, he surrendered no runs in any of his other four appearances.
Jake Lamb: Third baseman Lamb clearly had the best AFL season among D’back position players. He hit one home run and drove in seven with a line of .299/.386/.416 in 77 at-bats. Lamb also had a productive season at High Class A Visalia with 47 RBI’s and a line of .303/.424/.558. If Matt Davidson is traded in the offseason, Lamb could have the inside track as the third baseman of the future.
Bo Schultz: The 28 year old right hander was one of the best pitcher in the AFL. He led the league in innings pitched with 32 and was tied for second in strikeouts with 28. Schultz endured a tough final outing allowing four runs on seven hits in 3 2/3 innings. In seven starts, Schultz finished with a 3-0 record with a 3.09 ERA. When promoted to Triple A Reno last season, he struggled in a relief role after a fairly successful stint at Double A Mobile as a starter. Schultz will definitely be one of the most interesting players to watch when Spring Training begins.
Matt Stites: He gave up three earned runs in his first outing and then another one in hos next one. After that, Stites was dominant, hurling nine innings and allowing four hits, walking three and striking out eight. He also saved three games and held opposing hitters to a .152 average in his last ten games. Stites is another guy, like Barret who has a real chance of making the D’backs out of Spring Training.