Although the Arizona Diamondbacks chances of making the playoffs are slim, the future has the potential to be very bright. According to MLB.com, which recently ranked the top 100 prospects in 2014, the D-backs have five players in their farm system that are among the best in all of the minor leagues.
Pitcher Archie Bradley ranked highest at No. 12 on the list. A first round pick (7th overall) in the 2011 draft is 2-5 this season with a 4.47 ERA, splitting his time between Triple-A Reno and Double-A Mobile.
Bradley has improved his command, and he earns praise for his demeanor on the mound. His stuff, size and makeup make him one of the best pitchers in the Minor Leagues. Elbow soreness slowed Bradley’s progress in the first half, but he has looked as good as ever since getting back on the mound.
The D-backs first round pick (15th overall) in the 2013 draft, Braden Shipley, also snuck inside the top 50 at No. 47. Shipley has spent his 2014 campaign with Single-A Visalia and South Bend, starting a total of 17 games with a 5-6 record and 4.09 ERA in 99 innings pitched.
Shipley is an excellent athlete, and he repeats his loose and easy delivery well. He fields his position as well as would be expected from a former shortstop. Shipley earns high marks for his competitiveness and his aggressiveness on the mound.
Despite his very short time with the club, 2014 first round draft pick (16th overall) Touki Toussaint made the list at No. 85 and Double-A Mobile pitcher Aaron Blair came in at No. 87. The only ranked position player in the organization was Double-A third baseman Jake Lamb at No. 98.
Even if the D-backs don’t have what it takes to make the playoffs this season, it seems as if they have some of the correct pieces in place to build for a solid future and could add even more promising young talent at the trade deadline Thursday.