Oct. 2, 2009
TEMPE, Ariz. - For the second straight season, Arizona State baseball will have six former players participating in the Arizona Fall League when it begins play on October 13. ASU leads all schools with the six former student-athletes playing in the 18th season of the AFL.
Mike Leake (Cincinnati Reds), CJ Retherford (Chicago White Sox), Ike Davis (New York Mets) and Colin Curtis (New York Yankees) will all be making their AFL debuts this season, while Tuffy Gosewisch (Philadelphia Phillies) will be playing for the third season and Josh Perrault (Baltimore Orioles) returns for his second season.
Major League Baseball created the Arizona Fall League in 1992 to serve as an off-season "graduate school" for top prospects. The AFL is often known as a showcase league because its players have the opportunity to display their skills for baseball scouts, general managers and minor league farm directors.
With Leake, Davis, Curtis and Retherford set to make their AFL debuts this year, Arizona State University will now boast 34 former players to participate in the prestigious Arizona Fall League since it began play in 1992. Three former Sun Devils have also managed in the AFL. 15 former Sun Devils have gone on to play Major League Baseball after appearing in the AFL, including 2008 American League Most Valuable Player Dustin Pedroia.
2009 National Player of the Year and two-time Pac-10 Pitcher of the Year Mike Leake will pitch for the Peoria Saguaros. Leake finished his ASU career with a 40-6 mark, third most wins in school history. He was a three-time First Team All-Pac-10 selection, became the second Sun Devil to win at least 10 games in three straight seasons and was the eighth overall selection by the Cincinnati Reds in the 2009 MLB Draft.
Retherford, who will play for the Peoria Javelinas, was an all-purpose player for the Sun Devils in both 2006 and 2007. He appeared in 80 games, batting .303 with seven home runs and 52 RBI. He also pitched in eight games, going 2-2. In 2006, he became the first Devil in 10 years to pitch and catch in the same game. He was an undrafted free agent signing by the Chicago White Sox following the 2007 season. Retherford played for the AA Birmingham Barons in 2009, hitting .297 with 10 homers and 76 RBI.
Davis was a first round pick of the Mets in the 2008 draft following a stellar Sun Devil career. Davis was a three-time First Team All-Pac-10 selection, a two-time All-American and ranks fifth all-time in school history with 69 doubles and seventh all-time with 202 RBI. He split time between A Port St. Lucie and AA Binghamton this past season, combining to hit .298 with 20 home runs and 79 RBI. Davis is currently playing for Team USA in the IBAF World Cup and will play for the Surprise Rafters in the AFL.
Curtis, who will play for the Surprise Rafters, was a First Team All-Pac-10 pick in 2006 who hit .328 over his three seasons in Tempe. He collected 226 hits and drove in 135 runs while also swiping 50 bases. He was a fourth round pick of the New York Yankees following the 2006 season. Curtis split time with AA Trenton and AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre this season, combining to bat .250 with seven homers and 48 RBI.
Gosewisch will be making his third straight appearance in the Fall League and will suit up for the Scottsdale Scorpions. Gosewisch was a four-year standout for the Sun Devils from 2002 to 2005, batting .320 with 10 homers and 166 RBI while playing virtually every game behind the plate during his final three years. He was an 11th round pick of the Philadelphia Phillies in the 2005 MLB Draft and he spent time with both AAA Lehigh Valley and AA Reading.
Perrault will play for the Phoenix Desert Dogs in 2009. He was a Sun Devil from 2002 to 2003. He pitched for both AAA Norfolk and AA Bowie in the Baltimore Orioles organization this past season, saving a combined 18 games while striking out 74 batters.
The Arizona Fall League runs from October 13 until November 21, with Sundays off days. The league will hold its annual Rising Stars Showcase Game on November 7 at Surprise Stadium and its Championship Game on November 21 at Scottsdale Stadium. Regular AFL games are played at Phoenix Municipal Stadium, Hohokam Park, Scottsdale Stadium, Surprise Stadium and at the Peoria Sports Complex. Camelback Ranch and Goodyear Stadium will also host some games this season. For ticket information, log on to MLBFallBall.com.