Arizona Fall League: Mid Season Review

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Kyle Freeland – SP – # 5 Purple Row Prospects List (PuRPs)

Out of the four pitchers the Rockies have in the AFL, Freeland has the biggest star power. The 2014 First Round pick out of Evansville has high expectations on his impact with his hometown club. He played high school ball at Thomas Jefferson High School and is a bit of a guinea pig; maybe someone who grew up at altitude has an advantage when pitching at altitude. Sadly, we’ve been unable to see much from Freeland; he’s been hurt for most of time in the organization. He came out with a bang in 2014; 1.15 ERA and 33/6 K/BB in 39 innings but ended the year with shoulder soreness and surgery to remove bone chips in his elbow. He’s in the AFL to get some extra innings to prepare for next year.

He’s made four starts for the Rafters, with 14.2 IP, 4.3 ERA, and a 9/6 K/BB. His first start was a disaster – 0.2 IP, 6 ER, 2 BB, 0 K – and inflated his numbers. He’s been stellar otherwise; 14 IP, 0.64 ERA, 4 BB, 9 K in three starts. We’ll see how he looks for the rest of the fall games, but he’s definitely back on track to assume his top prospect title for 2016.

 Sam Moll – RP – #31 PuRP Honorable Mention

Moll is small for a pitcher – 5’10”, 185 lbs – but still manages to throw some heat; he’ll sit 93-95 from the left side and supplements it with an above average curveball. Moll was promoted from Modesto (A) to New Britain (AA) after the All-Star break, finishing with a combined line of 68.1 IP, 2.63 ERA, 74 K, and 16 BB. Moll moved to the bullpen after 2013 and has solidified himself as a future piece in the bullpen for the Rockies after missing most of 2014 with an injury.

The lefty has made 4 appearances and gone 5 IP, 2 ER, 7 K, and 1 BB. The one walk is awesome, especially since Moll’s biggest knock is his control. He’ll remind Rockies fans of the old Rex Brothers with a similar pitch mix. This AFL stint looks more like a tryout for Moll; the Rockies need a lefty in the bullpen, and Moll could seize control of the roster spot with a good finish and a good showing in spring training.

Carlos Estevez – RP – #33 PuRP HM

Estevez is a bullpen arm with some late-inning potential. He, along with Moll, split his time between Modesto and New Britain, posting a combined 48 IP, 3.40 ERA, 68 K and 14 BB with 18 saves. He sits 94-98 and with a four pitch mix of an average curveball and developing slider and changeup.

Estevez has been dominant in his AFL stint so far. He’s appeared in six games and posted a line of 6 IP, 0.00 ERA, 0 hits, 4 BB, 8 K, and 4 saves. The 22-year-old righty clearly has the attention of the front office and could potentially play his way to the majors. They could use some bullpen help.

Matt Carasiti – RP – Unranked

Carasiti, a 6th Round pick out of St. John’s in 2012, features a three pitch mix; a low- to mid-90’s sinking fastball, above average slider, and solid-above average change. Carasiti, like Moll, converted to the bullpen after the 2013 season and is looking to carve out a future there.

In 5 appearances Carasiti has shown some mixed results. He’s gone 6 IP giving up 1 H, 7 BB, and 3 K. Holding opponents to one hit over six innings is good. Walking more than a batter per inning is not. Look to see if he can reel in his control over the second half of the AFL season to make a difference.