Arizona Fall League Notes

Matthew Pouliot of Rotoworld checks in with some AFL notes, including some thoughts on a few Brewers prospects.

Ryan Braun (.326/.396/.641):

He later finished tied for second in the AFL in homers and third with a 1038 OPS. So, Braun is quickly proving he can hit. Still to be determined is whether he'll stick at third base or requite a move to the outfield. Braun is athletic enough to handle the position, and added experience might make him acceptable at the position. The Brewers are certainly hoping so, as they'd love to have him ready to replace Corey Koskie in 2008. With Bill Hall set to shift to the outfield, Braun could even be an option next year if Koskie gets hurt again.
Vinny Rottino (.213/.308/.350):
Rottino's ability to catch is a major selling point as he attempts to establish himself as a bench player, but with the Brewers shoring up their catching situation by adding Johnny Estrada, having a third catcher around doesn't figure to be much of a priority when it's time to finalize those last couple of roster spots.
Dennis Sarfate (4.20 ERA, 15 IP, 23/8/15 K/BB/H):
Sarfate can work in the mid-90s while going all out in relief, and his curveball is a strikeout pitch. If he can just make enough progress with his command so that he walks about four batters per nine innings, he should be a fine middle reliever or maybe a setup man. He probably won't ever be consistent enough to close. He'll likely be a long shot to make the Brewers out of spring training, but he'll have plenty of chances to establish himself.
Not much to add with regard to Braun--he tore up the AFL and is looming huge on the horizon.

Rottino's poor AFL performance and the Estrada trade have probably doomed Vinny to another season in Nashville. He's probably fifth on the catching depth chart at the moment.

I didn't realize it until reading this piece, but it does appear that Sarfate is on the outside looking in, at least initially, for the bullpen next year. I have to figure Cordero, Capellan, Wise, Turnbow, Aquino, Shouse, and the loser of the Villanueva/Jackson derby (I'm picking Jackson) all appear to be ahead of him; Melvin might always go out and get another lefty, too. Despite the fact that Sarfate might be better than some of those guys, it's nice to know that, in him and Grant Balfour, the Brewers have some good bullpen depth.

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