Thompson, Barton, Alums to Fall League
The Arizona Fall League rosters have been released for this autumn’s action, and the Dash are represented well. Current Winston-Salem closer Taylor Thompson, along with five former Dash stars and current White Sox farmhands, will suit up for the Salt River Rafters.
Thompson will join outfielder Trayce Thompson, hurlers Andre Rienzo and Santos Rodriguez and infielders Carlos Sanchez and Andy Wilkins in the AFL. Winston-Salem trainer Cory Barton will also head to Arizona in the same role with the Rafters.
All six White Sox representatives have played in Winston-Salem during their minor league careers. They will join highly-touted prospects from Arizona, Colorado, Toronto and Washington’s farm systems.
Taylor Thompson is 2-1 with a 2.59 earned run average in 30 relief appearances this season. After battling some injuries in the first half, the Montgomery, Ala., native has responded with a second-half ERA of 0.60 in 30 innings of work.
Three other soon-to-be AFL players donned the Dash purple in 2012. Rienzo made four starts and posted a 1.08 ERA in 25 innings before earning a promotion to Double-A Birmingham, where he is 4-3 with a 3.27 ERA. Sanchez is now with Triple-A Charlotte after hitting .315 with 42 RBI and 58 runs scored with Winston during the season’s first three months. Trayce Thompson is also in Triple-A Charlotte following a promotion today. He still leads the Carolina League with 90 RBI and is tied atop the circuit with 22 homers.
Rodriguez was with Winston-Salem throughout the 2010 and 2011 campaigns. In the CL, Rodriguez amassed a 4-3 record and a 3.69 ERA in 72 appearances largely out of the bullpen. He is now with Triple-A Charlotte after boasting a 2.81 ERA in Double-A Birmingham this season.
Finally, Wilkins is with Birmingham, where he is hitting .236 with 17 homers and 66 RBI. The former Arkansas slugger hit .278 with 23 long balls and 89 RBI for the Dash last season.
This season marks the 20th in AFL history. The season runs from October 9 until the annual championship game November 17.