ZEBULON, N.C. - Preliminary rosters for the 2017 Arizona Fall League were announced recently and current Carolina Mudcats players Lucas Erceg, Monte Harrison and Corey Ray, along with former Mudcat and current Biloxi Shucker Jake Gatewood, were all selected by the Milwaukee Brewers to play in this year's prospect laden off-season league.
The Brewers additionally announced that Mudcats' all-time saves leader Nate Griep and former Mudcats reliever Quintin Torres-Costa will also represent Milwaukee in this year's Arizona Fall League.
Erceg, 21, was batting .258/.308/.419 with a .727 OPS, a team high 15 home runs and a Carolina League high 79 RBIs at the time of the announcement. Erceg has twice won the Carolina League Player of the Week Award this season and, as of August 30, was among the league leaders in doubles, extra-base hits and games. Milwaukee selected Erceg in the second round of the 2016 MLB Draft of out Menlo College in California.
Harrison, 22, began the 2017 season with Low-A Wisconsin where he hit .265/.359/.475 with 11 home runs, 32 RBIs and 11 stolen bases. He, at the time of the AFL announcement, has since hit .268/.332/.483 with 10 home runs, 32 RBIs and 16 stolen bases over 53 games with the Mudcats. Harrison is currently (as of August 30) one of only seven MiLB players to reach the 20 HR/20 SB club this season. The Brewers selected Harrison in the second round of the 2014 MLB Draft out of Lee's Summit West High School in Missouri.
Ray, 22, had a team high 30 multi-hit games at the time of the AFL roster announcement and was among the league leaders in stolen bases with 24. He was also hitting .240/.312/.371 with 28 doubles, four triples and seven home runs on August 30. The Brewers selected Ray in the first round and with the fifth overall pick in the 2016 MLB Draft out of the University of Louisville.
Gatewood, 21, hit .269/.340/.438 with a .779 OPS over 111 games this season with the Mudcats before his promotion to Double-A Biloxi on August 7. The Visalia, CA native was a mid-season Carolina League All-Star and finished his stellar run with Mudcats with a team high 113 hits and with a team high 36 doubles. He also totaled 11 home runs, 66 runs and 53 RBIs with the Mudcats before his transfer to Biloxi. Milwaukee selected Gatewood in the first round of the 2014 MLB Draft out of Clovis West High School in California.
Griep, 23, pitched to a 2.37 ERA and went 3-1 with a franchise record 30 saves over 45 games and 49.1 innings for the Mudcats this season. Griep was both a mid-season and post-season Carolina League All-Star in 2017 and finished the year at 1-1-30 with a 1.91 ERA over 33 save opportunities. The Brewers selected Griep in the eighth round of the 2015 draft out of Kansas State University. He was also a 2016 Midwest League post-season All-Star while playing for the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers where he set the club record for saves with 23 last season.
Torres-Costa, 22, was 6-4-1 with a 3.77 ERA over 23 games with the Mudcats before his transfer to Double-A Biloxi on July 9. He had also totaled 66 strikeouts over 45.1 innings and led qualified Carolina League relievers in highest SO/9ip ratio (13.10) before the move. Torres-Costa went on to pitch to a 5.23 ERA while going 3-2 in 18 games and 20.2 innings pitched with the Shuckers over the remainder of the 2017 season. The Brewers selected Torres-Costa in the 35th round of the 2015 draft out of the University of Hawaii.
The AFL rosters are made up of some of the top prospects in Minor League Baseball and all 30 Major League Baseball organizations contribute players to their respective teams. Erceg, Harrison, Ray and Gatewood, along with several to be announced Milwaukee players will play for the Salt River Rafters.
The AFL consists of six teams including the Salt River Rafters, Peoria Javelinas, Scottsdale Scorpions, Mesa Solar Sox, Glendale Desert Dogs and Surprise Saguaros. The AFL begins play on Tuesday October 10 and concludes with its annual championship game on Saturday, November 18 at Scottsdale Stadium.
The Carolina Mudcats are the proud new Carolina League, Class-A Advanced affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers. First established in 1991, the two-time Southern League Champion Mudcats are in their 27th consecutive season of baseball at Five County Stadium in Zebulon, N.C.
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.