FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The World Series has ended, but baseball never stops. After several Fort Wayne alumni just won a title with the Texas Rangers, former and future TinCaps are competing in Major League Baseball’s Arizona Fall League, and abroad.
The Fall League features many of the best prospects in the sport. That includes outfielder Jakob Marsee (No. 12 Padres prospect), first baseman Nathan Martorella (No. 10), infielder Graham Pauley (No. 11), reliever Cole Paplham, and reliever Francis Peña, who all appeared with the TinCaps in 2023.
Pauley is one of four finalists from the National League who fans can vote into Sunday’s “Fall Stars” Game. Click here to vote for Pauley. The infielder/outfielder was San Diego’s 2023 Minor League Player of the Year, highlighted by a 45-game stretch with the TinCaps from late June through mid-August. As a ‘Cap, Pauley posted a .300 batting average with 16 home runs, 46 RBIs, and a .987 on-base plus slugging percentage. In Fort Wayne’s 30-year franchise history, Pauley’s .987 OPS is the second highest for a player who appeared in 38 or more games. (James Darnellhad a 1.001 OPS across 73 Single-A games in 2009, while Trea Turner now ranks third with a .976 OPS over 46 games in 2014.)
Meanwhile, last month Marsee earned the Arizona Fall League’s initial Player of the Week award. The outfielder was named a Midwest League All-Star after playing in 113 games with the TinCaps this season. He’s currently leading the “AFL” in total bases, extra-base hits, runs, and doubles, while ranking third in OPS and fourth in average.
The Padres have also assigned three younger prospects to the AFL that project to be TinCaps in 2024: left-handed pitcher Jagger Haynes (No. 26 Padres prospect), right-handed pitcher Braden Nett, and right-handed pitcher Emmanuel Pinales. (Martorella, Marsee, Pauley, and Paplham earned promotions to end their season with Double-A San Antonio, while Peña made his TinCaps debut on the final day of the regular season and could also return to Fort Wayne next year.)
Three former TinCaps now with other MLB organizations have been competing in the Fall League as well: outfielder Robert Hassell (2021-22; Nationals), outfielder Corey Rosier (2022; Red Sox), and left-handed pitcher Erik Sabrowski (2021; Guardians).
Elsewhere, other recent TinCaps players are participating in professional winter leagues in the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and…