Bradley's four starts have been a bit of a mixed bag. He has thrown a total of 11 innings, which have resulted in 17 hits, and a .347 batting average against. Perhaps more worrying, is the K:BB ratio of 8:7. However, his last outing was easily his best of the fall, four shutout innings of work, scattering five hits with just one walk and two K's. He said, "It's something that I've been working for, to have a start like that where things kind of rolled together and clicked for me. I've been searching for a start like that, working my tail off. For it to come together today is a good feeling." Also worth noting: he is throwing a slider for the first-ever time, so a learning curve should be expected.
Our flame-throwing reliever, who racked up 29 saves for the Visalia Rawhide, has certainly looked impressive in his early Arizona Fall League going. His five innings and four games to date have not just been scoreless, they've also been hitless, with six strikeouts and two walks, pitching against some of the best prospects in the game. In what may be related news, Burgos was added to the Diamondbacks' 40-man roster, so will be safe in the Rule 5 draft. Burgos's last outing on Thursday, saw him work a perfect ninth inning for the save, striking out two of the three batters faced.
After some chatter as to whether he or Jake Lamb was the hotter third-base prospect, the pendulum appears to have tipped back towards the latter so far, with Drury struggling over the first couple of weeks. He's hitting below the Uecker Line, having gone 10-for-52, and Brandon's .192 average is last on the Salt River Rafters, as is his .603 OPS, despite a pair of home-runs in consecutive games. But it's worth noting that Drury has been playing at second in the AFL. It's not a position entirely unfamiliar to him, with some work there this year at Mobile, but for now, it's hard to say where his future may lie, with serious doubts over his ability to make the transition.
Perhaps the least-heralded of our prospects in this year's league, but it does come on the heels of his 2.56 ERA over 56 appearances for Double-A Mobile. And he probably won't stay unheralded, if he keeps up the way he has been going. Fleck has worked 5.2 scoreless innings over five games, picking up a couple of saves, but has struck out nine batters, compared to two walks. He impressed enough people to be nominated as the AFL Pitcher of the Week for the last period, but lost out to the Royals' Kyle Zimmer.
The Diamondbacks' director of player development Mike Bell raved about Marzilli earlier this month, calling him "an unbelievable outfielder. I think he compares with A.J. Pollock, Ender Inciarte and those guys." A cynical translation might be "glove first slap-hitter," but his bat has kept up with the bigger boys, at least in terms of average, with Marzilli hitting .276 in his first 10 games. Not much beyond that, admittedly, with one double his only extra-base hit, and two walks in 31 PAs. That largely reflects his regular-season work, where he had eight home-runs in 461 at-bats between Visalia and Mobile.
The most impressive line from Bradley's last start, which O'Brien caught, wasn't Archie's. It was the catcher 3-for-3 in nailing base-runners. For context, only once since April 1998 has a D-backs catcher thrown out three runners in a game [Miguel Montero, 8/11/11 vs. HOU]. Prior to the game, O'Brien said, "My biggest focus this year was my defensive work behind the plate, my plate discipline and pitch recognition. I think I’ve made some huge strides in those aspects and will keep doing what I need to get where I want to." Seems legit. He has hit only .209 to date, but with more walks than K's, his OBP is .414, and with six of nine hits being for extra-bases, the OPS is a solid .903.
How good have all our relievers been? Sherfy, along with Burgos and Fleck, have combined for a total of 15.2 scoreless AFL innings, allowing only six hits, with a K:BB ratio of 20:4. The first named has given up two hits in his five innings, with a 5:0 K:BB ratio, holding batters to a .125 average against him. Not bad for someone who is still only 22 years old. Small sample size of course, but the lack of walks is encouraging, as his control wasn't brilliant during the regular season, when he walked 4.2 batters per nine innings in High-A and Double-A. If he can fully harness a slider often described as "devastating", maybe Sherfy will be part of our 2016 bullpen.
[All stats are through October 26]