When the last collective bargaining agreement moved the Rule 4 Draft signing deadline to midsummer, it effectively killed the fall-league debutante, as advanced draftees now frequently debut in Class A ball in the year they are drafted. As such, most of the pitchers we see in the Arizona Fall League are there because an injury or injuries robbed them of innings during the regular season. None of them are as heralded as Orioles righty Dylan Bundy once was.
Bundy was a late addition to the league, and he threw all of two innings here before he was sidelined yet again with a forearm issue. While Bundy's injuries are discouraging -- he has thrown 65 innings since the end of the 2012 season -- what we saw during those two Fall League innings, the first of which consisted of just seven pitches and the second on three days' rest, is a ray of light in a quickly darkening tunnel. Bundy's fastball was 92-94 mph, and he showed an average curveball, changeup and slider, with the latter two flashing above average. The stuff is not nearly as devastating as it was when he was one of the top prospects in baseball and pitching big league innings as a teenager, but it was a solid showing for someone who hadn't thrown a competitive pitch since May.
Obviously, given Bundy's somewhat unprecedented injury history, it's hard to stand on solid ground while attempting to predict his future, but if what we saw in his annotated stint here holds, then he can still be a mid-rotation arm. He turned just 23 on Saturday.
Speaking of oft-injured ex-prospects who were teenage major leaguers way back in 2012, Rangers infielder Jurickson Profar has shaken off the rust he was clearly dealing with early in the AFL schedule and is starting to get his timing under control and make more strong contact from the left side of the plate.