Major League Baseball announced the rosters for the 2015 Arizona Fall League All-Star Teams on Monday afternoon, and a pair of young Mariners made the cut. D.J. Peterson and David Rollins will both represent the Peoria Javelins on November 7 at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick.
D.J. Peterson has shined in the early part of the AFL season. The Gilbert, AZ product is hitting .257 with 2 doubles, 2 home runs and a team leading 8 RBI through 10 games. He has registered a .333 on base percentage and slugged .486 across 35 at bats.
Peterson entered the season ranked as the 50th best prospect in all of baseball according to MLB.com, but he failed to live up to the hype. The 23-year-old started the year with the M’s double-A affiliate in Jackson. Peterson hit a measly .223 with 7 home runs and 44 RBI through 93 games. Despite his ugly stat line, Seattle opted to promote him to Tacoma in early August. Peterson went 3 for 14 with the Rainiers before an Achilles injury ended his season.
The former top prospect definitely took a step backwards in 2015, but his stock is once again rising in the Arizona heat. Peterson is a powerful right-handed bat, and I expect him to make his Mariners debut at some point during the 2016 season. First base seems like the most likely position for D.J. at the next level.
The Mariners acquired David Rollins last offseason from the Houston Astros via the rule 5 draft. Rollins pitched very well in spring training, but was given a 50-game ban by MLB in late March following a positive drug test. The 25-year-old lefty rejoined Seattle in July, and finished the season with a 0-2 record and a 7.56 ERA. Rollins tallied 21 strikeouts and issued 8 free passes across 25 innings.
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Due to Rollins missing the first half of the season, Seattle opted to send him to the AFL to get a few more innings under his belt. He has produced solid results thus far, going 0-0 with a 3.86 ERA and 1 save through his first 5 appearances. Rollins has fanned 4 and walked 1 in 5.1 innings of work.
David Rollins struggled mightily this past season with Seattle, and it will take a great spring for him to break camp in the Mariners’ bullpen. He allowed far too many baserunners in 2015, as his 1.800 WHIP illustrates. I expect Rollins to begin next year with Tacoma.
The AFL All-Star Game will take place at 5:08 pm PST from Salt River Fields at Talking Stick in Scottsdale, AZ. The special event will be broadcast nationwide on MLB Network, and fans can watch worldwide on MLB.com. The AFL All-Star Game is a must-see event for baseball fans, and it should be fun to watch the next wave of young talent together on the same field.