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Published On: October 12th, 2015

Fall league showcases the top prospects in Minor League Baseball


Rochester, Minn. – Starting tomorrow twenty eight former Northwoods League players will be competing over the next two months in Arizona against the top players in Minor League Baseball.


There are six teams in the Arizona Fall League: the Scottsdale Scorpions, Mesa Solar Sox, Salt River Rafters, Glendale Desert Dogs, Peoria Javelinas and Surprise Saguaros. The names of the teams were picked by Major League Baseball to reflect the Southwestern desert traditions in the state.


The teams are broken into two divisions, East and West and each Major League Baseball team sends six top prospects to the Arizona Fall League. Most of the players are Double-A and Triple-A Minor League players. Each team can choose to send one player considered a Class A player.


This year the Eau Claire Express have one former player taking part in the fall league.  Casey Gillaspie was drafted in the 1st round of the 2014 MLB draft by the Tampa Bay Rays.  This past season the first baseman played most of the season with the class-A Bowling Green Hot Rods, before getting promoted to advanced class-A where he finished the season with the Charlotte Stone Crabs.  During the 2015 season he hit .253 with 17 home runs and drove in 48 runs.    


The former Northwoods League players and their AFL team are as follows:


Glendale Desert Dogs

Steven Brault   Willmar ’12-‘13

Chris Cotton     Lakeshore ‘12

Tyler Eppler      Rochester ‘13

Tom Windle      Madison ‘11

Keegan Yuhl     Battle Creek ‘13

Andrew Knapp   La Crosse ‘11

J.D. Davis         Wisconsin ‘12

Jake Peter        Wisconsin ’12-‘13

Derek Fisher     Madison ‘12


Peoria Javelinas

Daniel Winkler  Rochester ‘10

Chad Wallach    Rochester ‘12

Tyler Smith       La Crosse ‘11

Phillip Ervin      Green Bay ‘11  


Salt River Rafters

Dakota Bacus    Waterloo ‘11

Daniel Gibson   Madison ‘12

Beck Wheeler    Wis. Rapids ‘11


Surprise Saguaros

Jacob Barnes      Willmar ‘10

Sam Wolff           Wisconsin ‘10


Mesa Solar Sox

Harrison Cooney   La Crosse ‘11

Jake Esch            Madison ’09-‘10

Stephen McGee    Alexandria ‘12

Eric Aguilera        Lakeshore ‘12

Casey Gillaspie     Eau Claire ’12

Aaron Kurcz         Alexandria ‘09


Scottsdale Scorpions

Mitch Garver         St. Cloud ’10-‘11

Jeremy Lucas         Waterloo ’10-‘11

Michael Gerber       Wisconsin ’11, Madison ‘12

Danny Rosenbaum Thunder Bay ‘08



More information on the Arizona Fall League can be found here: Arizona Fall League




The Northwoods League is the proven leader in the development of elite college baseball players. The 21-year old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 120 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (BOS) and Ben Zobrist (TB). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League YouTube channel. For more information, visit