With a superb pair of starts as his support, Desert Dogs pitcher Austin Gomber of the Cardinals organization was named the Arizona Fall League Pitcher of the Week for the last week of October.
The left-handed Gomber has made four AFL starts thus far and has shown improvement from outing to outing. Coming off a leash of three innings in his first start, Gomber was tagged for three runs across four frames in his second outing. From that bump in the path onward, however, Gomber has sailed smoothly, and the two starts he’s had since the subpar second outing have garnered him league-wide recognition.
Gomber, a fourth-round pick of the Cardinals in the 2014 draft, won both of his starts between Monday, October 24 and Saturday, October 29, and they led to him being named that week’s top pitcher. During the two starts he made in the time frame, Gomber logged ten innings and struck out as many while holding the Scorpions and Saguaros to a combined sum of one earned run on six hits.
Gomber’s success to this point in the exhibition season -- a 2.12 earned run average in seventeen innings -- is certainly not an anomaly in comparison to the success he’s had throughout his tenure in the Cardinals’ farm system. Ranked as the Cardinals’ nineteenth prospect by MLB.com, the 22-year-old Gomber pitched to a very respectable 2.69 ERA in 21 starts between High-A and Double-A in 2016, a year that was preceded by a fifteen-win season Gomber pieced together as a member of the Class-A Peoria Chiefs in 2015, his first full season in the organization.
With thirteen games remaining on the Desert Dogs’ schedule, Gomber is in line to make three more starts this exhibition season, and his next start is in line to fall on Friday, November 4, when the ‘Dogs take on the Peoria Javelinas.