Sentimental Saints: Catching up with Peyton Stumbo, Pittsburgh Pirates

PASADENA,  CA- Before Peyton Stumbo ever put on an Arroyo Seco Saints jersey, Saints’ manager Aaron Milam heard plenty about his high-level talent.  

Milam’s friend Troy Buckley, then the pitching coach at Nevada where Stumbo played, had high praise for the righty.  

“Troy sent him [to Pasadena] and said this was one of his most promising relievers,” Milam said. “He’d started a lot of weekday games and was probably going to be penciled into the rotation the next year. So, we were excited.”  

Buckley, a former minor league baseball catcher and college coach for nearly 30 years, has seen plenty of pitching in his lifetime, so his assessment of Stumbo held weight.  

To help prepare Stumbo for more innings in Reno the next season, he made four starts for Arroyo Seco in 2022. His time was brief due to an innings limit put in place by Buckley, and his numbers didn’t stand out, but he still made an impact in Pasadena due to his upbeat, lighthearted attitude.  

“He was a genuine team guy,” Milam said. “Had a lot of support from his team. Guys out behind him were laying out [to make plays], they definitely wanted to get him a win. That’s what I remember about him, he was a good kid.” 

Stumbo attributed his ability to stay positive and be a good teammate to the environment that Milam fosters in Arroyo Seco.  

“He told us to have fun,” Stumbo said. “There was just no weight on the shoulders when he was coaching us.”  

His strongest memories from being with the Saints are also some of the most fun moments, which further proves the impact the positive team culture had on him.  

“The most memories that I can remember are the bus rides, going to and from places that were two hours away, playing a funny game like mafia,” Stumbo said. Mafia is still a staple on Saints bus rides to this day, making even the longest postgame bus ride after a long game fly by with laughter and camaraderie.  

Stumbo made ten starts the season after playing for the Saints, a collegiate career high. And, after a dominant two starts the next summer with a fellow CCL team, the Lincoln Potters, where he threw 12 innings and gave up only three hits and one run in those two games, Stumbo was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 20th and final round of the 2023 MLB draft, 587th overall.  

Only a year and a half into his pro career, Stumbo acknowledged that the life of a professional athlete has already helped him grow immensely. 

“I know I’ve learned a lot more pitching-wise and just being a professional in general over the course of the first month I was here…there was so much to think about and take in.”  

Stumbo has spent the 2024 season with the Low-A Bradenton Marauders and has excelled in a high-usage relief role. His strikeout numbers have seen a huge increase from his college days, as he’s punched out 46 batters in only 34 innings pitched. He’s even gotten some back-end bullpen looks and has three saves on the season. A high K-rate is a good sign for a pitcher hoping to be relied on for more of those key late game outs.  

But also, the season in Bradenton, Florida has been a thrill for Stumbo off the field. He’s an avid outdoorsman who has really enjoyed exploring a new state with his teammates.  

“There’s a group of us here who go fishing almost every single night,” Stumbo said. “We’ll go to a pier, we’ll go on the Kayaks, we’ll go fish the mangroves. We’ll go on a boat with one of our older buddies and go fish for tarpin or snook, or we’ll get out and just enjoy the water. That’s the biggest thing that we’ve been doing lately is kind of enjoying the beach and fishing from the beach and getting on the boat. That’s been the biggest adventures that we’ve been having here.” 

Of course, the ultimate goal is to get to Pittsburgh. But Stumbo is focused on the day-to-day work, a mindset that would not change if he got the call to the bigs.  

“I think the biggest thing it would be is the realization that I gotta keep going,” Stumbo said. “I have to earn my spot and I have to keep my spot.”  

The entire Saints organization continues to cheer on Peyton Stumbo as he works to make that dream a reality.  



  • Saints reporter Ethan Inman (Southern California)
  • Saints photographer Angie Martinez (Mount St. Mary’s)





Aaron Milam | (626) 695-6903 |
Nick Gorman | (805) 252-7954 |

© 2018 Arroyo Seco Saints

Website by microbrand-logo