White Sox AFL participants announced

Mark Gonzales Tweeted the names of the 7 players currently slated to line up for the Peoria Saguaros during this years Arizona Fall League. The names are:
Anthony Carter, Charlie Leesman, Henry Mabee, Johnnie Lowe, Josh Phegley, Eduardo Escobar and Jared Mitchell.

Compared to last year’s crop, this actually looks like a very solid group of prospects to follow. Jared Mitchell’s inclusion, after missing the entire season through injury, is extremely encouraging. I wouldn’t expect Mitchell to set the league on fire though given how much time he has missed with injury and how raw he still is as a prospect, but just getting him back into action is great to see.

Like Jared Mitchell, Josh Phegley has missed significant time this season with injury. Phegley was drafted last year as an offensive minded catcher, but he has struggled with the bat in his 90+ games as a pro. With illness hopefully behind him, Phegley could be set for a breakout performance in the AFL, but the most important thing for him is to remain healthy and get some more reps in against quality pitching.

Eduardo Escobar has had a breakout season of sorts with the bat. He’s not a slugger, and never will be, but his .713 OPS between A+/AA this year is a big improvement on the .627 mark he posted at Low-A last year. Reports on Escobar’s defense at SS have remained excellent, with some scouts grading his arm as a plus-plus tool.

Charlie Leesman is the best pitching prospect of the group. He had a tough time of things at High-A with 44 BB/39 SO in 84.2 IP, but since his promotion to Double-A he has been much better, with 18 BB/40 SO in 50.2 IP. The White Sox have always liked Leesman’s arm, and a strong AFL campaign could propel him towards the top of the Sox’ prospects list.

Anthony Carter, Henry Mabee and Johnnie Lowe are all further down the prospect rankings. Carter has put together a strong season out of Birmingham’s bullpen and he can reportedly hit the upper 90’s with his fastball. Mabee get’s a lot of ground balls, but his stuff is nothing special and Lowe is your typical finesse rightly who’s toeing the line between prospect and non-prospect territory.

Mitchell, Phegley, Escobar and Leesman offer plenty of intrigue and this should be a fun group of prospects to follow. They’ll be joined by players from the Cincinnati Reds, Minnesota Twins, San Diego Padres and Tampa Bay Rays organizations. Other high level prospects on the Sagueros include catcher Devin Mesoraco, outfielders Joe Benson and Ben Revere, and pitcher David Bromberg.

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