Playoffs provide experience for D-backs' prospects

Playoffs provide experience for D-backs' prospects

Playoffs provide experience for D-backs' prospects

SAN FRANCISCO -- The three Minor League affiliates who reached postseason play for the Arizona Diamondbacks all advanced into their respective division series.

That can only be a good thing as the players move through the system. It's been particularly good for the Class A South Bend Silver Hawks and their group of recent Draft picks.

Braden Shipley, the D-backs' No. 1 Draft pick in June's First-Year Player Draft, has made made four starts for the Silver Hawks since joining the team from Class A Short-Season Hillsboro.

"For South Bend, that's a great first year to have as a pro," Gibson said. "There's more pressure and it becomes a do-or-die situation. You have to learn how to slow things down and trust what got you there."

Shipley is 0-1 with a 2.61 ERA with the Silver Hawks, who won their second-round series opener over Fort Wayne in the Midwest League playoffs Saturday.

First-year pros Aaron Blair, a Competitive Balance Round A pick, Daniel Gibson, a seventh-round pick, and Jimmie Sherfy, picked in the 10th round, are all pitching for the Silver Hawks.

The Mobile BayBears are one game away from competing for their third straight Southern League title. They lead their best-of-five series 2-1 over Mississippi and could clinch Sunday night.

The Double-A BayBears have a mix of players from Nick Evans, a fifth-round pick by the New York Mets in 2005, to 2011 Draft picks Archie Bradley, Andrew Chafin, Nick Ahmed (Braves), Ryan Court and Garrett Weber.

"You always hope to create a winning culture," Gibson said. "It is a credit to the Minor League staff, which has done a great job assigning players. We've created some continuity through the organization where guys are doing the same things from top to bottom."

The Visalia Rawhide won its second-round opener Saturday against the San Jose Giants.

Rick Eymer is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.