The Arizona Diamondbacks may have lost on the field on Monday but off of it, the organization received some good news. Aaron Blair, the third-ranked prospect in the D’backs’ system, made his debut for the Double A Mobile BayBears. To say it went well would be an understatement. The right-handed Blair tossed 6 2/3 scoreless innings allowing four hits and no walks while striking out ten. Mobile defeated Pensacola 6-3 to improve their record to 62-36.
The 36th overall pick in the 2013 Draft, Blair has now pitched on three different Minor League levels this year. He started at low Class A South Bend, starting six games for the Silver Hawks. He then was promoted to High A Visalia where made another 13 starts. In 72 1/3 innings, the 22-year old Blair struck out 81 batters. Overall, he is 6-4 with a 4.00 ERA. He is second in all of Minor League Baseball in strikeouts with 134. Blair is expected to make his next start over the weekend at home against the Jackson Generals.
Will he make the jump to Triple A over the next six weeks? I can’t see him moving up that quickly particularly with Mobile expected to contend for the Southern League Championship. Still, the prospect of a rotation including Blair, Braden Shipley and Archie Bradley in two years can make even the most negative D’back fan a little giddy.