Preview: Cole, Krol, Head & Stassi to Star for Stockton in 2012

 

Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton

The opening day roster for the A’s Class-A affiliate in the California League, the Stockton Ports, was announced on Monday. The most intriguing prospects playing for the Ports this season will include left-handed pitching prospect Ian Krol, right-handed flame-thrower A.J. Cole, acquired from the Nationals in the Gio Gonzalez deal, catching prospect Max Stassi, and slugging third baseman Miles Head, acquired from the Red Sox in the Andrew Bailey trade.

Other notable players on the Ports’ roster this season include right-handed pitching prospect Blake Hassebrock, who posted an impressive 2.64 ERA at Class-A Burlington last year, and former first-round draft pick Sean Doolittle, who’s attempting to convert to pitching after suffering a string of injuries while serving as a first baseman and outfielder.

You’ll find the Stockton Ports’ complete roster, along with profiles of some of the teams’ top players, below.

 

A.J. Cole

A.J. COLE

Right-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 20

Drafted 2010 – 4th Round

A top high school draft pick in 2010, the lanky, 6’4” Cole appears to be all arms and legs. But his right arm seems to have the power mesmerize mortal men, striking out batters at a rate of 10.9 per 9 innings over his short minor league career. Acquired from the Nationals in the Gio Gonzalez trade, the Florida native could turn out to be the gem of the deal. Just 20 years old, Cole has plenty of upside and will be working to make the most of it at Stockton in 2012.

 

Ian Krol

IAN KROL

Left-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 20

Drafted 2009 – 7th Round

A coveted high school pitching prospect, Krol really opened some eyes in 2010 when he posted a 2.80 ERA while walking only 28 batters between Class-A Kane County and Stockton. Between injuries and a suspension due to inappropriate tweeting, 2011 ended up being a complete washout for Krol. But he’s now set to rebound at Stockton, where he finished off his impressive 2010 campaign.

 

Blake Hassebrock

BLAKE HASSEBROCK

Right-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 22

Drafted 2010 – 8th Round

An eighth-round draft pick out the University of North Carolina in 2010, Hassebrock was named a Midwest League All-Star in his first full year of pro ball. He posted an impressive 2.64 ERA while striking out 110 batters in 139 2/3 innings for Class-A Burlington, and the organization has high hopes of Hassebrock replicating his 2011 performance at Stockton in 2012.

 

Sean Doolittle

SEAN DOOLITTLE

Left-handed Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 25

Drafted 2007 – 1st Round

Originally drafted by the A’s as a first baseman in the first round of the 2007 draft, injuries have limited his mobility and kept him completely off the field for the past two seasons, but he’s now looking to make his mark on the mound as a hard-throwing lefty. Doolittle was a successful college pitcher, so the pitcher’s mound isn’t completely new to him. And after throwing well in spring training, he’s looking to take the next step this season at Stockton.

 

Miles Head

MILES HEAD

Right-handed Hitting Third Baseman

Age On Opening Day: 20

Drafted 2009 – 26th Round

Head is a talented young hitter whom the A’s targeted in the Bailey trade with Boston. Last year while playing in Class-A, he opened eyes by hitting .299 with 37 doubles and 22 HRs to go along with an .887 OPS. Originally drafted as a third baseman, he’s spent most of his time in the Red Sox system playing first base, but the A’s are planning to return him to third. And if he continues to hit at Stockton, there’s no reason Head shouldn’t be able to move up through the A’s system pretty quickly.

 

Max Stassi

MAX STASSI

Right-handed Hitting Catcher

Age On Opening Day: 21

Drafted 2009 – 4th Round

A top high school catching prospect, Stassi was viewed as an eventual replacement for Kurt Suzuki as soon as he was drafted by the A’s. Injuries have slowed his progress though and, since being drafted in June of 2009, Stassi’s accumulated fewer than 600 at bats in the A’s system. But the native northern Californian will have every chance to show what he can do both at the plate and behind the plate for Stockton in 2012.

 

-STOCKTON PORTS 2012 ROSTER-

 

PITCHERS

Josh Bowman

Jacob Brown

A.J. Cole

Sean Doolittle

Jose Guzman

Blake Hassebrock

Connor Hoehn

Ian Krol

ArnoldLeon

Nate Long

Zack Thornton

Blake Treinen

T.J. Walz

 

CATCHERS

Petey Paramore

Max Stassi

 

INFIELDERS

Michael Gilmartin

Miles Head

A.J. Kirby-Jones

Nino Leyja

Ryan Pineda

Tony Thompson

 

OUTFIELDERS

Rashun Dixon

Eliezer Mesa

Myrio Richard

Josh Whitaker

 

 

5 Comments

I read somewhere that Michael Ynoa may join one of the minor league squads this year, but I can’t remember where. Do you know anything about that? Would love to be able to actually see that guy pitch in the US this year.

Ynoa’s not currently on any rosters to open the season, but he could be a possibility with short-season Vermont or the A’s AZ league team, both of which get going in June.

Thanks for this post! Btw, I think TJ Walz belongs in their top group of prospects. He’s a solid prospect – I rank him in the top four.

Wow, the Stockton roster is much stronger than the Midland roster and Burlington rosters; those look quite weak. I see that Yordy Cabrera has not been assigned. Aaron Shipman to be at Vermont.

Stockton does have a strong roster this year – particularly the pitching staff with Cole, Krol and Hassebrock. All Midland’s really got going is Choice and Sonny Gray. Cabrera could still end up on the Stockton roster. I know that’s where many A’s execs expected him to end up this season.

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