John Gray/Lowell Spinners
Five former Spinners are taking part in the Arizona Fall League, which began play on Wednesday. Seth Garrison, Casey Kelly, Jose Iglesias, Ryan Lavarnway and Eammon Portice are all a part of the Peoria Javelinas, a team comprised of prospects from Boston, Houston, Seattle, Toronto and Cleveland.
Iglesias, who made his professional debut last year in the AFL with the Mesa Solar Sox by hitting .285 with 3 home runs and 13 RBI, played in 13 games for Lowell this season as part of a rehab assignment. During his time as a Spinner, Iglesias hit .350 with 7 RBI. He is regarded as one of the top prospects in the Boston system due to his amazing defensive ability.
Another player who is a veteran of the AFL is Casey Kelly, who was teammates with Iglesias last season with Mesa. Playing shortstop before making his conversion to a full time pitcher, Kelly hit .171 in 11 games. He was impressive on the mound in yesterday’s 7-4 win over Surprise by going 4.0 innings, allowing 2 unearned runs and striking out 3.
Lavarnway, who made his professional debut with Lowell in 2008 by hitting .211 with 2 home runs and 9 RBI in 22 games, was recently named the 2010 Red Sox minor league offensive player of the year. In 2010, Lavarnway hit .288 with 22 home runs and 102 RBI split between High-A Salem and Double-A Portland.
Garrison, who was impressive in his 2008 professional debut in Lowell putting up a 1.45 ERA with 9 saves in 22 games, made 2 rehab appearances this season with the Spinners before spending the majority of the season as a member of the Salem bullpen.
Portice is another player with previous AFL experience, playing in 2008 with Scottsdale where he had a 6.14 ERA in 5 games in relief. A 2007 Spinner, Portice spent 2010 with Portland where he pitched exclusively out of the bullpen for the first time since being in Lowell, posting a 4.65 ERA.
Stay tuned to the Spinners Blog for further updates from the Arizona Fall League and check back all off season for the latest from Lowell.