Like Jackie Daytona in Tucson, Arizoña, Fall baseball is timeless. The playoffs are great, for sure, especially whenever it looks Houston is on the outs, but it’s not just the biggest stars on the brightest stage that make this season special. The Arizona Fall League provides a chance for youngsters from all levels to get another few cracks at the bat before winter, another few sweepers and spiked curveballs in their efforts to become blood-thirsty creatures of the night, baseball-wise. 

Padres OF Jakob Marsee got hotter and hotter throughout the regular season and is enjoying the chance to keep cooking under the desert sun, slashing .475/.569/.825 with ten strikeouts, eight walks, seven steals and two home runs. San Diego’s outfield picture is a little cloudy right now, but we should be able to (mar)see it much more clearly closer to spring. 

Rockies 3B Sterlin Thompson is slashing .484/.610/.742 with two steals in nine games. Colorado has gotten some things wrong over the past few years, but Thompson appears to have been the right answer with the 31st overall pick on draft night in 2022. He hit just .238 in 34 games at Double-A but posted a 111 wRC+ thanks to a strong walk rate (10.4 percent) and Isolated Slugging Percentage (.190).

Cubs 3B James Triantos hasn’t typically dominated in the roto categories, but he’s always hit and finished up the regular season with three games in Double-A. In ten fall league games, he’s slashing .455/.571/.788 with seven strikeouts and seven walks. The Cubs have a lot of pieces to fit across the infield, but Triantos might benefit from a little extra development time to increase his power output. 

The Guardians must be happy to see 1B Kyle Manzardo hitting for power (five HR in ten games) after struggling to do so in Triple-A this year. Non-zero chance he opens 2024 with the big club. 

Blue Jays LHP Ricky Tiedemann is making an early play for the opening day rotation, recording 18 strikeouts in 13 innings along with a 2.77 ERA and 1.00 WHIP. He probably would’ve made the jump this year if not for injury. 

The nouveau riche get richer in Texas thanks to RHP Emiliano Teodo looking like a back-end bullpen piece with his 12 strikeouts and 0.33 WHIP in six innings. He’s allowed one hit. He started in 14 of his 18 games at High-A in 2023, posting a 4.52 ERA and 4.82 BB/9 rate. Shorter bursts could let him race to the majors if he can command his double-plus fastball/curveball combo. 

Tigers RHP Jackson Jobe is having success with his illusions (Dad!), posting a 2.25 ERA and 1.17 WHIP with 12 strikeouts in 12 innings. His timeline will be interesting this season after he closed out the regular season with six shutout innings in Double-A. Detroit has the look of a potential contender in baseball’s weakest division, and Jobe should be able to help early. I wouldn’t have sent him to Arizona, but they’ve typically followed a prospect playbook that’s hard for me to decipher.  

Padres 6’3” 185 lb RHP Braden Nett has been utterly dominant, posting a 0.77 WHIP and 1.38 ERA with 16 strikeouts across 13 innings, which ties him with Tiedemann for the league lead. He’s thrown only 13 innings in Low-A since being drafted in 2022, so he’s among the least experienced arms in that league. Promising stuff in a great scouting organization, but still a guy to follow for a while before hustling to clear a spot for him.

Thanks for reading!