Month: June 2016

Saturday, June 11th: Jensen Pitches Hounds to Victory while Brugman Continues Hot Hitting for Sounds & Friedrichs Helps Ports Snap 10-Game Skid

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Midland RockHounds Pitcher Chris Jensen (7 IP / 5 H / 1 ER / 0 BB / 7 K / Win)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Midland RockHounds RHP Chris Jensen (7 IP / 5 H / 1 ER / 0 BB / 7 K / Win)

 

TEXAS LEAGUE  (Double-A)

Midland RockHounds  5

Frisco RoughRiders       1

WP – Jensen 4-4 / 5.22

Prospect Of The Game:

Pitcher Chris Jensen

(7 IP / 5 H / 1 ER / 0 BB / 7 K / Win)

One night after the RockHounds snapped their six-game losing streak, RHP Chris Jensen turned in one of his best starts of the season, allowing just 1 run on 5 hits while walking none and striking out 7 over 7 innings of work to earn his 4th win for Midland. RHPs Trey Cochran-Gill and Andres Avila each tossed 1 scoreless inning in relief for the RockHounds. After going 4 for his last 50 with 29 strikeouts, third baseman Matt Chapman had 3 hits on Saturday while driving in a pair of runs, and first baseman Viosergy Rosa singled, doubled, walked and drove in a run for the RockHounds.

Click here for more on Nashville, Stockton & Beloit…

Local Boy Daulton Jefferies Makes Good as A’s 2nd Pick in This Year’s Draft

dj12805924_1071818282936327_5742636123770923759_n.0.0bThe A’s didn’t have to look far to find their second pick in this year’s amateur draft. With the 37th overall selection, the team took Daulton Jefferies, a 20-year-old right-hander who’s spent the past three years pitching right in their own backyard at UC Berkeley for the California Golden Bears.

While Jefferies’ fastball reportedly has been clocked as high as 95 mph, he also works with a changeup and a slider and possesses excellent command. He went 7-0 and posted a stellar 1.08 ERA while striking out 53 and walking just 8 over 50 innings of work in his junior year at Cal this season. But he missed about 8 weeks of the season due to calf and shoulder injuries. He was once considered a potential top 20 pick in the draft, but those injury issues may have caused him to tumble into the lap of the A’s, who were more than happy to have the opportunity to nab another top-tier talent.

Jefferies, who went to high school in Atwater, just a few miles north of Merced, says that he’s modeled himself a bit after A’s right-hander Sonny Gray. So the northern California native was clearly happy to find himself selected by the local team. An added plus to being taken by the A’s is the fact that he’s also friends with the other two young pitchers the team took on the first day of the draft, Florida’s A.J. Puk and Logan Shore. The trio had the chance to play together last summer on the USA Collegiate National Team and have been fast friends ever since.

We took the opportunity to talk with Jefferies on the morning after the draft and found him eager and excited to be part of a pack of promising young pitching prospects who will hopefully help guide the green and gold back to glory before long…

 

AF:  Well, congratulations on being selected by the A’s on the first day of the draft. So how did it feel waking up today knowing you were one of the top 40 picks in the major league draft?

DJ:  To be honest with you, it hasn’t really hit me yet! As soon as I got drafted, I ran to get an A’s hat…and when I woke up, it was the first thing I put on. But it hasn’t hit me yet – it’s pretty surreal.

AF:  So are you going to go to sleep with it on tonight too?

DJ:  I wouldn’t doubt it to be honest with you.

AF:  I know you’re from around the Merced area. So did you grow up as an A’s fan or a Giants fan or both?

DJ:  My family is a mix between Dodgers, Giants and A’s. I have a big family so it’s spread out a bit. But going to Berkeley certainly helps – going to see Sonny Gray pitch, going to see Marcus Semien, Mark Canha and Bob Melvin, who are Cal graduates. I grew up going to Giants games and A’s games.

AF:  It sounds like you grew up being pretty well acquainted with the A’s anyway. So have you seen or read Moneyball yet?

DJ:  Yes, I watched Moneyball. It was actually a really good movie. I didn’t get a chance to meet Billy Beane. But I’m sure I will, so I’m pretty excited.

AF:  Oh, I’m sure you will very soon! So did you have a favorite A’s player growing up?

DJ:  Not really. I remember watching Scott Hatteberg and that whole story. And then, Sonny Gray…I kind of try to model my game after him. He’s had a lot of success there. He plays the game the right way and plays it for the right reasons.

AF:  So are you looking forward to wearing those white cleats?

DJ:  Yeah, my uncles were teasing me about that, and the stirrups and everything. I’m pretty excited. As long as I’m a professional baseball player, I could wear a clown outfit and I wouldn’t care!

AF:  Can you tell me a little bit about your repertoire and how confident you are in each of your pitches and where they’re at at this point?

djNCAA California Coastal Car (3)DJ:  My fastball’s 90-94 mph and touches 95-96 mph. I can control both sides of the plate. Both 4-seam and 2-seam – the 2-seam more going in to righties and away to lefties. And then I build off my fastball and I build off my changeup. My favorite pitch to throw is my changeup. It probably goes from 84 to 88 or 89 mph. I like to throw it a lot to lefties and get hitters off balance, and then going to righties away and getting them to kind of reach and roll over and build off of that with a fastball inside and jam them. And then I just developed a slider this year, and it became one of those big out pitches for me. It usually goes from about 82 to 86 or 87 mph. I learned about myself a lot building off my off-speed. I don’t have a huge, over-powering fastball, like 96-98 mph range. So I just developed into what I think I am. I hit my spots and I can control both sides of the plate. And I don’t really care about strikeouts, as long as I get guys out and miss barrels. I don’t try to strike anyone out. But as long as I execute my pitches, everything will work out. But professional ball is a whole different animal, and I’m ready for it.

AF:  I was going to ask you about what you kind of touched on there. What’s your mentality like when you take the mound? Is there anything in particular you’re trying to remember to do or thinking about trying to accomplish whenever you take the mound for a start?

DJ:  First pitch strike and getting ahead of guys, and getting the leadoff guy out – that’s a big momentum shift. As a pitcher, you’re trying to get your offense back in the dugout so they can score some runs for you. So anything I can do to help speed up that process and get them back grabbing their bats is good.

AF:  You’ve had a good career at Cal over the three years you’ve been there, but you really had a great year this season. You went 7-0 with an ERA of 1.08, and it’s hard to do much better than that. So what was really working for you this season and was there anything different you were doing this year?

DJ:  You know, I think the summer helped me a lot with confidence. Being on the USA Collegiate National Team and playing against other national teams – it was kind of weird playing against 35-year-old Cubans – but it was a great experience, and it kind of opened my eyes to finding out what kind of pitcher I really am. The big thing for me was getting ahead and kind of attacking the hitter. I’m going to make the hitter earn his way on base, I’m not going to walk the guy – I hate walks with a passion!

AF:  You got off to a great start at Cal this year, and then you had a couple of injuries involving your calf and your shoulder and ended up missing about 8 weeks of the season. So can you tell me a little bit more about what happened there?

DJ:  The calf started first after facing Oregon State. And then my arm started to kind of stiffen up. I thought it was just normal soreness from throwing a complete game against Oregon State, but it didn’t really go away. And I just decided to shut it down. So I got the rest I needed. And I was extremely fortunate to be able to get back out there and play with my guys the last two games.

AF:  Did the A’s want to talk to you about the shoulder injury and look into the situation a little further before the draft?

DJ:  Yeah, I went to the workout [for draft prospects at the Coliseum] last week. And I got to see their doctor. He took me through some tasks, strengthening stuff and mobility with my shoulder. And guys in the big leagues get over this injury and I did too. And I’m just glad they had faith in me and I can’t wait to get out there. Jermaine Clark was my scout, and he had some nice things to say to me when I went there.

AF:  I guess you actually played together on the USA Collegiate National Team last summer with the A’s other top two picks from the first day of the draft, Florida pitchers A.J. Puk and Logan Shore.

DJ:  Yeah, we did. We’ve gotten to be pretty good friends. I text Logan and A.J. all the time. They’re a great group of guys. And just being around those guys with those repertoires and getting to see A.J. Puk pitch – when it looks like it’s 86 mph but, when you look up, it’s 97 mph, just because he makes it look so easy. But I couldn’t be more happy. I facetimed them this morning and we all had our A’s hats on, so it’s a pretty exciting time for us!

AF:  Well, I guess it must be nice to be starting your pro career with a couple of guys you already know and like and have played with before.

DJ:  Absolutely, it’s awesome!

AF:  So being a northern California guy yourself, is there anything else you’d like A’s fans to know as you embark on your career in the green and gold?

DJ:  I’m just so thankful for the opportunity. And I can’t wait to get out there and start the uprising of the Oakland A’s! And not just me, but Logan Shore and A.J. Puk and everyone else, we’re going to get this thing going and we’re extremely excited!

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Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm. You can also get our exclusive A’s minor league newsletter e-mailed to you free by signing up here.

Getting to Know the A’s 2016 Top 11 Draft Picks

A's #1 pick A.J. Puk

A’s #1 pick A.J. Puk

After finishing poorly last season, Oakland earned the sixth overall pick in this year’s amateur draft. The A’s also had the 37th overall pick in the Competitive Balance Lottery Round A, which meant the team would pick eleven players in the first ten rounds of the draft. And with the tenth round concluding at the end of the second day of the draft on Friday, it’s now time to take a look at the A’s top eleven picks of the 2016 draft.

After taking three collegiate pitchers with their top three picks on Thursday, the A’s continued to focus on college arms again on Friday. Overall, the team selected seven college pitchers, one high school hurler and three college position players with its top eleven picks.

The three position players include third-rounder Sean Murphy, a strong-armed catcher from Wright State, fifth-rounder JaVon Shelby, a power-hitting third baseman out of Kentucky, and seventh-rounder Tyler Ramirez, a solid-hitting center fielder out of North Carolina.

The only high school player taken by the A’s in the top ten rounds was fourth-rounder Skylar Szynski, who pitched a perfect game in his sophomore season. Szynski has committed to Indiana, but the A’s are hopeful of signing him.

As we mentioned in yesterday’s day one draft recap, top pick A.J. Puk is a flame-throwing lefty out of Florida with top-of-the-rotation potential, while second pick Daulton Jefferies is a 20-year-old righty from UC Berkeley (Cal) with pinpoint control, and Logan Shore is a solid strike-thrower also out of Florida who possesses an advanced understanding of pitching. And all three played together as members of 2015’s USA Collegiate National Team last summer.

Most of the remaining pitchers taken on Friday tend to be big strikeout guys. And sixth-rounder Brandon Bailey out of Gonzaga is remarkably reminiscent of last year’s sixth-round pick, right-hander Bowdien Derby, who’s since been dealt to the Brewers. Both are under-sized west coast righties with gaudy strikeout totals whom the A’s selected in the sixth round.

We’ll be learning a lot more about all the A’s top picks in the coming days and can look forward to getting the chance to see much more of them at Vermont or Arizona, or possibly even Beloit, before the month is through.

 

apajpuk-florida1-250x300#1 – 1st Round

A.J. Puk

Left-Handed Pitcher

Florida

Age: 21 / 6’7” – 230 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Left

2016 College Stats: 70 IP / 50 H / 25 ER / 31 BB / 95 K / 3.21 ERA / 1.16 WHIP

 

djNCAA California Coastal Car (3)#2 – 1st Round Lottery

Daulton Jefferies

Right-Handed Pitcher

UC Berkeley (Cal)

Age: 20 / 6’0” – 185 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Right

2016 College Stats: 50 IP / 34 H / 6 ER / 8 BB / 53 K / 1.08 ERA / 0.84 WHIP

 

lsloganshoreuf300#3 – 2nd Round

Logan Shore

Right-Handed Pitcher

Florida

Age: 21 / 6’2” – 215 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2016 College Stats: 92 1/3 IP / 75 H / 25 ER / 15 BB / 80 K / 2.44 ERA / 0.97 WHIP

 

smZMUNWMNGCNTJJNX.20150502043215b#4 – 3rd Round

Sean Murphy

Catcher

Wright State

Age: 21 / 6’3” – 215 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2016 College Stats: 121 AB / 6 HR / 23 BB / 16 K / .281 AVG / .408 OBP / .504 SLG

 

ss100598937#5 – 4th Round

Skylar Szynski

Right-Handed Pitcher

Penn High School (Indiana)

Age: 18 / 6’2” – 195 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Right

2016 High School Stats: 59 2/3 IP / 29 H / 12 ER / 18 BB / 78 K / 1.41 ERA / 0.79 WHIP

 

jshttps-%2F%2Fkty-platform-secure-prod.silverchalice#6 – 5th Round

JaVon Shelby

Third Baseman

Kentucky

Age: 21 / 5’11” – 175 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2016 College Stats: 198 AB / 12 HR / 29 BB / 67 K / .212 AVG / .335 OBP / .470 SLG

 

bbmaxresdefault2#7 – 6th Round

Brandon Bailey

Right-Handed Pitcher

Gonzaga

Age: 21 / 5’10” – 175 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2016 College Stats: 100 1/3 IP / 80 H / 27 ER / 31 BB / 125 K / 2.42 ERA / 1.11 WHIP

 

trNSATKSHRAIYJQGE.20150115212753#8 – 7th Round

Tyler Ramirez

Center Fielder

North Carolina

Age: 21 / 5’9” – 185 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Left

2016 College Stats: 189 AB / 8 HR / 50 BB / 54 K / .333 AVG / .482 OBP / .540 SLG

 

wggilbertside.0.0b#9 – 8th Round

Will Gilbert

Left-Handed Pitcher

North Carolina State

Age: 22 / 5’11” – 165 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Left

2016 College Stats: 44 2/3 IP / 43 H / 12 ER / 10 BB / 53 K / 2.42 ERA / 1.19 WHIP

 

dsMinnesotaDaltonSawyer1b#10 – 9th Round

Dalton Sawyer

Left-Handed Pitcher

Minnesota

Age: 22 / 6’4” – 190 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Left

2016 College Stats: 94 2/3 IP / 79 H / 35 ER / 42 BB / 112 K / 3.33 ERA / 1.28 WHIP

 

mjSU_JordanMitchell2#11 – 10th Round

Mitchell Jordan

Right-Handed Pitcher

Stetson

Age: 21 / 6’2” – 205 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2016 College Stats: 80 IP / 73 H / 35 ER / 32 BB / 75 K / 3.94 ERA / 1.31 WHIP

 

11th SS Eli White (Clemson), 12th OF Luke Persico (UCLA), 13th 2B Nathan Mondou (Wake Forest), 14th RHP Nolan Blackwood (Memphis), 15th LHP Ty Damron (Texas Tech), 16th OF Anthony Churlin (Island Coast HS-FL), 17th RHP Seth Martinez (Arizona St), 18th C Skyler Weber (Georgia), 19th RHP Sam Gilbert (Kansas), 20th RHP Brigham Hill (Texas A&M)

21st OF Kyle Nowlin (Eastern Kentucky), 22nd C Roger Gonzalez (Winthrop), 23rd RHP Christian Lindsay-Young (Niagara CC), 24th OF Robert Bennie (East Stroudsburg), 25th OF Jeramiah McCray (Martin Luther King HS-CA), 26th 1B Charley Gould (William & Mary), 27th OF Cole Gruber (Nebraska-Omaha), 28th 2B Josh Vidales (Houston), 29th RHP Matt Milburn (Wofford), 30th RHP Nick Highberger (Creighton)

31st RHP Sam Sheehan (Westmont), 32nd C Collin Theroux (Oklahoma State), 33rd C Jarrett Costa (Westmont), 34th SS Casey Thomas (Texas A&M-Corpus Christi), 35th LHP Daniel Rafferty (Bucknell), 36th RHP Brady Schanuel (Parkland), 37th OF Michael Farley (Chico HS-CA), 38th OF Matthew Frazier (Clovis North HS-CA), 39th SS Shane Martinez (John W North HS-CA), 40th SS Brett Bittiger (Pace)

 

Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm. You can also get our exclusive A’s minor league newsletter e-mailed to you free by signing up here.

Friday, June 10th: Overton Tosses 6 Shutout Innings and Pinder, Brugman & Maxwell Homer to Help Sounds Win while Hounds Prevail in Extras

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Pitcher Dillon Overton (6 IP / 4 H / 0 ER / 4 BB / 3 K / Win)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Pitcher Dillon Overton (6 IP / 4 H / 0 ER / 4 BB / 3 K / Win)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE  (Triple-A)

Nashville Sounds         10

Oklahoma City Dodgers  0

WP – Overton 6-4 / 3.63

HR – Pinder (5), Brugman (3), Maxwell (2)

Prospect Of The Game:

Pitcher Dillon Overton

(6 IP / 4 H / 0 ER / 4 BB / 3 K / Win)

LHP Dillon Overton delivered another solid start for the Sounds, throwing 6 shutout innings to earn his 6th win on Friday. And the former 2nd-round draft pick has now notched a nifty 2.05 ERA over his last 5 starts for Nashville. After appearing for Stockton on Tuesday, RHP Liam Hendriks tossed 1 scoreless inning of relief in his first rehab appearance for the Sounds, and RHP Ryan Doolittle got the final six outs to complete the 5-hit shutout. Center fielder Jaycob Brugman had a big night at the plate, belting his 3rd home run for the Sounds while also collecting a pair of doubles and driving in 3 runs. Catcher Bruce Maxwell and shortstop Chad Pinder both homered, doubled and drove in a pair to help Nashville maintain its 5-game lead in the Pacific Coast League American Southern division over rival Round Rock. In other news, Nashville’s Zach Neal and Max Muncy were both recalled by the A’s on Friday, while Oakland starter Jesse Hahn was optioned back to the Sounds. And Beloit starter James Naile was reassigned to Nashville to make Saturday’s start for Daniel Mengden, who is expected to make his major league debut for the A’s on Saturday.

Click here for more on Midland, Stockton & Beloit…

A’s Take Trio of Talented Arms on First Day of Draft

A's top pick A.J. Puk

A’s top pick A.J. Puk

On day one of the 2016 amateur draft, the A’s chose to load up on collegiate arms, taking a trio of talented college hurlers with their first three picks of the draft. All three pitchers were members of 2015’s USA Collegiate National Team and at one point or another all were considered potential 1st-round draft picks.

With their first pick, the A’s selected a University of Florida junior for the second year in a row. Last year, it was Gators shortstop Richie Martin, and this year it was LHP A.J. Puk. Baseball America had recently ranked the big lefty as the top overall pick in the draft, and A’s scouting director Eric Kubota and the rest of the A’s staff were clearly excited that Puk was still available when it came time for the team to make the 6th overall pick in the draft.

Puk is a 6-foot-7, 230-pound, 21-year-old power pitcher whose fastball has been clocked as high as 99 mph. He pairs it with a solid slider, but his changeup is still considered to be something of a work in progress. His command has also been spotty at times, and the Iowa native walked a total of 84 batters in 188 innings during his 3-year collegiate career. This season, Puk walked 31 and struck out 95 while posting a 3.21 ERA over 70 innings of work for Florida. With an outstanding fastball, a solid slider, an impressive frame and loads of raw talent, it’s easy to see why most people see Puk as a pitcher with tremendous upside.

The only blemish that gets mentioned on Puk’s record is an arrest for criminal trespassing last year, when he and a teammate decided to climb on top of a crane located on a construction site on campus late one night. And if that’s the worst that you can say about someone, that ain’t so bad! A’s front office officials confirmed to A’s Farm the general impression about Puk that he definitely has top-notch stuff but his command has been a bit of an issue. The last time the A’s took a pitcher with their top pick in the draft was 2011 when the team took RHP Sonny Gray. And like Gray, Puk is considered to have the talent to be a potential top-of-the-rotation starter.

With their second selection, the 37th overall pick, in the Competitive Balance Lottery Round A, the A’s took a talented hurler who was originally considered by some to be a potential top 20 pick in the draft, RHP Daulton Jefferies, a junior from UC Berkeley (Cal). And once again, Kubota and company were pleasantly surprised to find such a top arm still available when it came time for the team to make their next pick.

Jefferies is a 6-foot, 185-pound, 20-year-old right-hander whose fastball has been clocked as high as 95 mph. He also features a slider and an occasional changeup and possesses excellent command. Despite being sidelined for 8 weeks this season with shoulder and calf injuries, Jefferies went 7-0 and posted a stellar 1.08 ERA while striking out 53 and walking just 8 over 50 innings of work this year for Cal.

Jefferies’ season got off to a great start but, when he missed nearly two months due to the aforementioned injuries, his draft stock tumbled in a bit as teams always start to become a little more timid whenever any sort of health issues arise. But that was good news for the A’s, who were able to snag another top-tier talent. An A’s source confirmed that the team did its due diligence on him medically and that they felt he was “all good.” And the northern California native did return from his injuries to make a couple of solid starts for Cal in May.

And finally, with their third selection, the 47th overall pick, in the 2nd-round, the A’s plucked another junior from the University of Florida pitching staff, Puk’s teammate, RHP Logan Shore. The Minnesota native is a 6-foot-2, 215-pound, 21-year-old right-hander who went 11-0 with a 2.44 ERA while striking out 80 and walking just 15 over 92 1/3 innings of work for Florida this season.

Shore, who was named the Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year last month, was actually the top performer on Florida’s pitching staff, while Puk was considered to have more upside. Shore doesn’t throw nearly as hard as the A’s top two picks but is a consistent strike-thrower with good control who also possesses an advanced changeup. His fastball typically sits around 90 mph and he also works with a slider. And what he may lack in velocity, he more than makes up for with solid command and an advanced understanding of pitching that many expect will help him rise quickly through the system.

 

apajpuk-florida1-250x3001st Round

A.J. Puk

Left-Handed Pitcher

University of Florida

Age: 21

Height: 6-7 / Weight: 230 lbs.

2016 College Stats: 70 IP / 50 H / 25 ER / 31 BB / 95 K / 3.21 ERA / 1.16 WHIP

 

djNCAA California Coastal Car (3)1st Round Supplemental

Daulton Jefferies

Right-Handed Pitcher

UC Berkeley (Cal)

Age: 20

Height: 6-0 / Weight: 185 lbs.

2016 College Stats: 50 IP / 34 H / 6 ER / 8 BB / 53 K / 1.08 ERA / 0.84 WHIP

 

lsloganshoreuf3002nd Round

Logan Shore

Right-Handed Pitcher

University of Florida

Age: 21

Height: 6-2 / Weight: 215 lbs.

2016 College Stats: 92 1/3 IP / 75 H / 25 ER / 15 BB / 80 K / 2.44 ERA / 0.97 WHIP

 

Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm. You can also get our exclusive A’s minor league newsletter e-mailed to you free by signing up here.

Thursday, June 9th: Sounds Split Doubleheader while Hounds Drop 6th in a Row & Stockton Suffers 9th Straight Loss

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Catcher Matt McBride (2 for 2 / 2 Doubles / Walk / RBI)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Catcher Matt McBride (2 for 2 / 2 Doubles / Walk / RBI)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE  (Triple-A)

GAME #2

Nashville Sounds          4

Oklahoma City Dodgers  1

WP – Alvarez 1-0 / 0.00

Prospect Of The Game:

Catcher Matt McBride

(2 for 2 / 2 Doubles / Walk / RBI)

After going 4 for 4 with a home run in Nashville’s last game on Tuesday, catcher Matt McBride came back to go 2 for 2 with 2 doubles and a walk to help the Sounds win the second game of Thursday’s doubleheader. And McBride has now failed to record an out in his last 8 plate appearances. Center fielder Jaycob Brugman singled and drove in a pair for the Sounds. RHP Eduard Santos came out of the bullpen to start the second game of the twinbill and performed well, allowing just 1 run while striking out 5 over 3 innings of work. After appearing in two games with Stockton, RHP R.J. Alvarez struck out 3 over 1 2/3 perfect innings of relief in his first rehab appearance for the Sounds, and LHP Patrick Schuster got the final three outs in the 9th to notch his 5th save for Nashville. In other news, the A’s traded Chris Coghlan to the Cubs on Thursday in return for second baseman Arismendy Alcantara, who was assigned to the Sounds. And since Max Muncy did not appear in either game of Thursday’s doubleheader, it seems safe to assume that he may be set to take Coghlan’s roster spot with the A’s.

Click here for more on Nashville, Midland, Stockton & Beloit…

A’s Take Talented Lefty A.J. Puk with Top Pick in the Amateur Draft

A's #1 pick LHP A.J. Puk

A’s #1 pick LHP A.J. Puk

With their #1 pick in the 2016 amateur draft, the A’s selected a University of Florida junior for the second year in a row. Last year, it was Gators shortstop Richie Martin, and this year it was LHP A.J. Puk. Baseball America had recently ranked the big lefty as the top overall pick in the draft, so the A’s have to consider themselves fortunate to still find him available to them with the 6th overall pick in the draft.

Puk is a 6-foot-7, 230 lb., 21-year-old power pitcher whose fastball has been clocked as high as 99 mph. He pairs it with a solid slider, but his changeup is still considered to be something of a work in progress. His command has also been spotty at times, and the Iowa native walked a total of 84 batters in 188 innings during his 3-year collegiate career. This season, Puk walked 31 and struck out 95 while posting a 3.21 ERA over 70 innings of work for Florida.

The last time the A’s took a pitcher with their top pick in the draft was 2011 when the team took RHP Sonny Gray. Like Gray, Puk is considered to have the talent to be a potential top-of-the-rotation starter. And if he develops as hoped, along with Gray and fellow lefty Sean Manaea, Puk could be a part of a talented trio atop the A’s starting rotation in years to come.

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Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm. You can also get our exclusive A’s minor league newsletter e-mailed to you free by signing up here.

Wednesday, June 8th: Mike Martin’s 5 Hits Help Snappers Win while Tyler Marincov Drives in 3 as Hounds Drop 5th Straight

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Beloit Snappers Outfielder Mike Martin (5 for 5 / 3 RBIs / Stolen Base)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Beloit Snappers Outfielder Mike Martin (5 for 5 / 3 RBIs / Stolen Base)

 

MIDWEST LEAGUE  (Class-A)

Beloit Snappers              11

Quad Cities River Bandits  3

WP – Murray 2-1 / 2.20

HR – Higley (3), Howell (2)

Prospect Of The Game:

Outfielder Mike Martin

(5 for 5 / 3 RBIs / Stolen Base)

Beloit put 11 runs on the board to win big on Wednesday. Last year’s 33rd-round draft pick for the A’s, CF Mike Martin, had a big day at the plate, collecting 5 hits while driving in 3 runs and swiping a base for the Snappers. Martin has been hot since joining Beloit just a few days ago, going 8 for 12 over his first 3 games in the Midwest League. Left fielder Justin Higley drew 3 walks and homered, while designated hitter Ryan Howell, singled, homered, walked twice and scored 3 times, and shortstop Trace Loehr had 2 doubles, drove in a pair and stole a base for the Snappers. Starter Michael Murray allowed 3 runs over 5 innings of work to earn his 2nd win on Wednesday.

Click here for more on Nashville, Midland & Stockton…

Tuesday, June 7th: Big Games by McBride, Healy & Brugman Help Nashville Win Again while Stockton Drops 8th Straight

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Catcher Matt McBride (4 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs / 4 Runs / HBP)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Catcher Matt McBride (4 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs / 4 Runs / HBP)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE  (Triple-A)

Nashville Sounds       13

Omaha Storm Chasers  4

WP – Smith 4-5 / 4.22

HR – McBride (3), Healy (2), Brugman (2)

Prospect Of The Game:

Catcher Matt McBride

(4 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs / 4 Runs / HBP)

The Sounds won big while notching their 20th victory in their last 23 games on Tuesday. Nashville’s #9 hitter, catcher Matt McBride, had a huge day at the plate, reaching base 5 times – thanks to his 3rd home run, 3 singles and a hit-by-pitch – while driving in 2 runs and scoring 4 times for the Sounds. First baseman Ryon Healy had 3 hits, including his 2nd home run for the Sounds and his 10th on the season, and drove in a pair, while center fielder Jaycob Brugman homered, doubled and drove in 4 runs, and designated hitter Colin Walsh went 1 for 3 and drew a pair of walks in his debut for Nashville. Starter Chris Smith allowed 3 runs over 6 2/3 innings to earn his 4th win for the Sounds.

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Monday, June 6th: Surkamp Pitches Sounds to Victory while Ports Fall in Extras

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Pitcher Eric Surkamp (6 1/3 IP / 5 H / 0 ER / 2 BB / 6 K / Win)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds LHP Eric Surkamp (6 1/3 IP / 5 H / 0 ER / 2 BB / 6 K / Win)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE  (Triple-A)

Nashville Sounds         3

Omaha Storm Chasers  1

WP – Surkamp 3-1 / 3.07

Prospect Of The Game:

Pitcher Eric Surkamp

(6 1/3 IP / 5 H / 0 ER / 2 BB / 6 K / Win)

LHP Eric Surkamp pitched Nashville to victory in his return to the Sounds on Monday. Surkamp threw 6 1/3 shutout innings, striking out 6 in the process, to earn his 3rd win as the Sounds won for the 19th time in their last 22 games. RHP J.B. Wendelken gave up 1 run in 1 inning of relief, while RHP Tucker Healy got the final three outs in the 9th to notch his 3rd save for Nashville. Shortstop Chad Pinder singled, doubled and scored twice, while left fielder Andrew Lambo doubled, walked and drove in a run, and center fielder Jaycob Brugman doubled, walked and scored the first run of the game for the Sounds. First baseman Rangel Ravelo left the game after running into the dugout railing while catching a foul ball in the 8th inning. And with infielder Colin Walsh rejoining the roster, infielder Josh Rodriguez was reassigned to the RockHounds on Monday.

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