Draft Picks

A’s Top 10 Draft Picks Mid-Season Progress Report

A's top pick Richie Martin

A’s top pick Richie Martin

It’s been about two months since this year’s amateur draft and about seven weeks since most of the players picked by the A’s began playing with either the Class-A Vermont Lake Monsters or the rookie-ball Arizona League A’s. Fortunately, the A’s managed to sign all of their top 10 picks this year. And with about seven weeks of play now in the books, it seems like a good time to take a look at how some the A’s newest prospects have been performing down on the farm.

The A’s top pick, shortstop Richie Martin, got off to a hot start for Vermont but has since cooled off a bit. The 20-year-old has shown a consistent ability to get on base though, walking 20 times over his first 31 games and putting up a .385 on-base percentage while also swiping 6 bases for the Lake Monsters.

The fastest riser of this year’s draft class has been the A’s 2nd-round pick, infielder Mikey White, who is the only member of this year’s crop to make it all the way up to the Beloit Snappers of the Class-A Midwest League. White earned the promotion after putting up an impressive .315/.405/.459 slash line in 111 at-bats for Vermont, though he has struggled a bit, going 3 for 37, since joining Beloit. With top pick Richie Martin the primary shortstop at Vermont, White split time between shortstop and third base while with the Lake Monsters but has been the starting shortstop since joining the Snappers.

The pitching standout of this year’s draft class for the A’s has clearly been RHP Bowdien Derby. The California native struck out 131 in 103 innings while pitching for San Diego State earlier in the year. And, so far, the 21-year-old has struck out 25 and walked just 5 over 23 1/3 innings while posting a 1.54 ERA in his first professional season in the A’s organization.

You’ll find the A’s top 10 picks of the 2015 draft along with their current statistics through August 7 below. The teams they’ve played for so far this season are noted, with the team they’ve appeared in the most games with listed first and their current team in bold…

 

rm6210061st Round

Richie Martin

Age: 20 / Shortstop

Vermont Lake Monsters

118 AB / 2 HR / 20 BB / 30 K / .254 AVG / .385 OBP / .381 SLG / .766 OPS

 

mw608383b2nd Round

Mikey White

Age: 21 / Shortstop-Third Baseman

Vermont Lake Monsters + Beloit Snappers

148 AB / 2 HR / 16 BB / 40 K / .257 AVG / .345 OBP / .372 SLG / .717 OPS

 

dc_MG_8530_resize23rd Round

Dakota Chalmers

Age: 18 / Right-Handed Pitcher

AZL A’s

11 2/3 IP / 9 H / 2 ER / 11 BB / 8 K / 1.54 ERA / 1.71 WHIP

 

sb6214504th Round

Skye Bolt

Age: 21 / Outfielder

Vermont Lake Monsters

105 AB / 2 HR / 10 BB / 28 K / .210 AVG / .276 OBP / .352 SLG / .628 OPS

 

kd6641285th Round

Kevin Duchene

Age: 21 / Left-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters + AZL A’s

22 1/3 IP / 22 H / 9 ER / 7 BB / 17 K / 3.63 ERA / 1.30 WHIP

 

bd6222466th Round

Bowdien Derby

Age: 21 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters + AZL A’s

23 1/3 IP / 15 H / 4 ER / 5 BB / 25 K / 1.54 ERA / 0.86 WHIP

 

kf6648517th Round

Kyle Friedrichs

Age: 23 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters

23 2/3 IP / 17 H / 8 ER / 10 BB / 11 K / 3.04 ERA / 1.14 WHIP

 

nc6633128th Round

Nick Collins

Age: 21 / Catcher

Vermont Lake Monsters + AZL A’s

108 AB / 2 HR / 10 BB / 14 K / .269 AVG / .336 OBP / .343 SLG / .679 OPS

 

jl6647239th Round

Jared Lyons

Age: 22 / Left-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters

9 IP / 17 H / 13 ER / 3 BB / 10 K / 13.00 ERA / 2.22 WHIP

 

sp59606610th Round

Steven Pallares

Age: 22 / Outfielder

Vermont Lake Monsters

142 AB / 1 HR / 30 BB / 24 K / .246 AVG / .376 OBP / .310 SLG / .686 OPS

 

 

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.

Get the Inside Scoop on Oakland’s Top 10 Draft Picks of 2015 from A’s Scouting Director Eric Kubota

A's scouting director Eric Kubota

A’s scouting director Eric Kubota

After selecting a good number of high school players over the past few years, the A’s returned to their old, familiar ways in this year’s draft, taking college players with nine of their top ten picks. The A’s took a pair of college shortstops with their top two selections. Top pick Richie Martin is a multi-talented, speedy, young shortstop out of Florida who’s still just 20 years old, while 21-year-old Mikey White is a solid-hitting shortstop out of Alabama.

The man responsible for overseeing the A’s efforts in the amateur draft is scouting director Eric Kubota. Kubota started out his career in the baseball world by interning for the A’s in the mid-‘80s and eventually served as the assistant director of scouting and the supervisor of international scouting before succeeding Grady Fuson as scouting director following his departure after the 2001 season.

In past years, we’ve talked with Kubota about top picks like Addison Russell in 2012, Billy McKinney in 2013 and Matt Chapman in 2014. And this year, we were eager to get his insights on #1 pick Richie Martin, as well as the rest of the A’s top ten picks of 2015.

When we spoke with Kubota, exactly one week after the start of this year’s draft, the A’s had signed eight of their top ten picks, with Richie Martin and Skye Bolt the only members of the top ten still remaining unsigned. Since then, although the A’s haven’t officially announced it, Jim Callis has reported that the A’s have come to terms with Bolt. Meanwhile, Martin’s signing will have to wait until he’s completed play in the College World Series.

 

AF:  Well, first of all, you guys took an awful lot of college players in this year’s draft – you only took five high school guys out of your forty picks. Was that just a function of the talent that was available or was there any other thinking involved there?

EK:  I think it was just more the way the draft pool was set. I think it was pretty well known that it was more of a college-heavy draft. So it certainly was not a conscious decision to necessarily take more college guys than high school guys.

AF:  Now your top pick Richie Martin, the shortstop out of Florida, was a college junior, but he’s young for a junior at just 20 years old. What was it about him that impressed you so much that you wanted to make him your 1st-round pick, and did his relatively young age help influence your thinking about him?

rmbrn_richie050513_10715444_8col2EK:  Yeah, his age definitely was a factor. He’s really less than two years older than some of the high school prospects we’re talking about and has three years of playing in the SEC, so it was certainly a factor. Richie’s a super athletic kid. He’s got outstanding defensive ability. He’s got the arm for the position, and we think the bat is ever improving. He performed very well with the bat in the Cape Cod League and in the SEC this year. We think he’s a very strong defensive shortstop, he can really run, and we think the bat is going to play in the major leagues.

AF:  What would you say his single best tool is?

EK:  His single best tool is probably his speed – he can really run – and just a little behind that would be his defensive ability.

AF:  So is there anyone you might compare him to?

EK:  Yeah, I thought about this because I know you always like to ask about it. For Richie, the guy he idolizes and the guy he does have some similarities to – I don’t want to say he is this person – but his idol is Derek Jeter, and there are a lot of parallels that you can make. I’m not saying he’s going to be Derek Jeter, but he has that kind of profile.

AF:  So let’s just say he’s Derek Jeter-ish!

EK:  I also thought a little bit about Barry Larkin, but I think Larkin probably has more power.

AF:  I remember Barry Larkin was always the comp for Addison Russell.

EK:  Yeah, that might end up being a pretty good comp.

AF:  With your 2nd-round pick, you went back to another college shortstop with Mikey White out of Alabama. He seems to have a pretty advanced bat at this stage of the game. There’s been some talk that maybe he profiles a little better as a second baseman. So tell me what you think about him with the bat and also what you think about him in the field.

MBAEK:  Yeah, he’s a very advanced hitter. He performed well in the SEC. Both he and Richie Martin, we’ve seen them since they were in high school. So he’s a guy we’ve seen a lot of over the years. Mikey’s always been able to hit. He’s got some strength. We think there’s power there that’s in play now and more power to develop. And from a defensive standpoint, we think, with his hands, he’ll be able to play shortstop in the major leagues.

AF:  So as far as you’re aware, the plan is to keep him at shortstop for the foreseeable future?

EK:  Yep, you’re going to see both those guys at shortstop.

AF:  And who would you compare him to?

EK:  For Mikey White, I thought he’s kind of like a Rich Aurilia type at shortstop – a very steady defender at shortstop with some power.

AF:  Now with your 3rd-round pick, you took your only high school player in the top ten rounds, Dakota Chalmers, the tall right-hander out of Georgia. So tell me what it was that made you want to make him your first high school pick of the draft?

EK:  When we evaluated Dakota, it was as a near 1st-round pick – that was our evaluation of him. He’s another guy we’ve seen a lot of over the summer and through the spring. We’ve seen him up to 95-96 mph, and we think he’s got a plus curveball – a strikeout, out-pitch type of curveball – and really an advanced feel for the changeup for a high school kid. So his stuff is top notch, and we think there’s physical projection left for him. Like I said, he was a guy going into the draft that we kind of saw as a near 1st-round type of guy.

dc_MG_8530_resize2AF:  I’d heard that a lot of people looked at him that way. Is there any particular reason you think he ended up falling to you in the 3rd round?

EK:  It’s hard to say. There are lots of different factors that go into making decisions for thirty different teams. It may have been signability at one point or another.

AF:  Well, it sounds like you made him an offer he couldn’t refuse [reportedly a signing bonus of $1.2 million].

EK:  [Laughter]

AF:  He does seem rather advanced for a high schooler though. Do you look at him as a guy who could move fairly quickly for a young kid?

EK:  I think we’re expecting him to be in Arizona for this year, and then we’ll just let things play out.

AF:  Any comparisons for him?

EK:  Chalmers I kind of likened to Clay Buchholz. Physically they’re similar, and they have the same kind of stuff.

AF:  He’s pretty much a real tall, skinny guy, right?

EK:  Right, exactly.

sbbolttt2AF:  Your 4th-round pick was one of the best names in the draft, Skye Bolt out of North Carolina. He’s a switch-hitter and a center fielder and he seems to profile like a lot of the hitters you targeted – some power and some plate discipline. So, besides his name, tell me what it was that you liked about Skye Bolt?

EK:  He’s full of ability, first and foremost. I mean, talent-wise, he’s a 1st-round talent if you just look at the tools. It was to our advantage that he didn’t have the kind of year offensively, at least average-wise, that he’d hoped to have, and I think that kind of pushed him down in the draft. But from a physical talent standpoint, he has 1st-round ability.

AF:  And who would you compare him to?

EK:  The guy I thought of, it’s not a really great physical comp, but I think the kind of player he could be is kind of a Jim Edmonds type – very good defense in center field with power.

AF:  Moving out of the southeast, your 5th-round pick was your first lefty. And everyone loves a lefty, so tell me what it was that you guys loved about Kevin Duchene out of Illinois?

kdILLOSUKevinDuchene2EK:  He’s got solid stuff – we’ve seen him up to 92 mph with a good breaking ball and changeup. He’s got an advanced feel for how to use his stuff. If you just look at the success he had at Illinois, he obviously knows how to pitch. We think we know the kid well. We think that he can really pitch, he’s got good stuff, and the kid’s solid.

AF:  It seems like a lot of these pitchers you guys took have really impressive walk-to-strikeout ratios and have really good command, and he seems to fit right into that profile as well.

EK:  Right, right. As an organization, we’ve discussed that a little bit. It doesn’t get any easier to throw strikes as the strike zone gets smaller as you move up.

AF:  Do you have a comp for him?

EK:  Potentially Jimmy Key for Duchene – kind of an average-sized left-hander who can really pitch.

AF:  Now your 6th-rounder was your first west coast pick, RHP Bowdien Derby out of San Diego State.

bdDerby1.0.0bEK:  I think he goes by “Bubba” actually. So he also makes the “all-name” team.

AF:  Yeah, I found him on Twitter as “Bubba Derby.” He was one of two guys out of San Diego State you took in the first ten rounds. I think he led the conference in strikeouts, so I guess it’s easy to tell what you like about him, but tell me a little bit more about Bubba Derby.

EK:  He’s kind of an average-height guy, and I think that probably pushed him down a little bit. There generally can be a bias against that in scouting. But just based on his ability and his stuff, and what he did with his stuff, we were certainly happy that we could get him in the 6th round when we got him. Obviously, he can throw strikes and he can miss bats, which are two things we value highly. We’ve seen him up to 93 mph. I’ve heard from other people that he was up in the high-90s as a closer, but we saw him up to 93 as a starter.

AF:  So is his fastball the main thing that guys are missing?

EK:  Yeah, it’s the fastball, but he also has a really good changeup.

Kyle FriedrichsAF:  Well, that always helps! Now you went with another west coast guy in the 7th round, RHP Kyle Friedrichs out of Long Beach State. He seems to have really exceptional command. I think he had 12 walks and 109 strikeouts. So obviously he must have a clue what he’s doing on the mound, but tell me what you saw in him.

EK:  Exactly, it’s kind of a common thing among these guys. We think that their stuff is solid, and these guys are all high performers with things we value. He had very low walk rates and very high strikeout rates, so he fits right in with that. We really think he has exceptional fastball command. And if there’s one characeteristic you need to be able to pitch in the major leagues it’s being able to command the fastball.

AF:  So in the 8th round, you took your first catcher, another middle-of-the-diamond player – like all these guys in your top ten picks. So tell me what you like about Nick Collins as a hitter and also how he profiles behind the plate.

ncSHallGtown-NickCollinsXYZ2EK:  Well, first and foremost, we think he can hit. He’s a big, physical kid. He’s a left-handed hitter. He’s got a very strong arm. I think his receiving skills are a little bit behind those two skills right now. But we’re very confident that he has the ability to evolve into a solid catcher.

AF:  I guess anytime you can find a left-handed hitting catcher with a strong arm it probably piques your interest.

EK:  Yeah, I mean, he can catch the baseball. But catching in professional baseball is just so different than at a high school or college level. There’s so much more asked of catchers, so there’s so much more development that goes into catchers, probably more so than almost any other position because it’s so different. But we like his hands, and we think he’s going to develop into a very good defensive catcher.

jlbaseball-action-jaredlyons9-new2AF:  In the 9th round, you went with another left-hander, Jared Lyons out of Liberty. Has he primarily been a starter or a reliever over his college career?

EK:  Prior to this year, he pitched mostly out of the bullpen for them. I think his role had kind of shifted around in previous years. He’d pitched primarily out of the pen and made some spot starts, but his stuff jumped up this year and he really established himself as a Friday night guy for Liberty. Also, it’s a common theme, but he threw strikes, he missed bats and he performed really well with solid stuff. I sound like a broken record!

AF:  Well, I guess we know what you’re looking for anyway! Now in the 10th round, you went with another up-the-middle guy, center fielder Steven Pallares, who was the second player you took out of San Diego State. He seems to be another guy with some pop and some plate discipline, so tell me a little bit more about him.

spCGcLRYsWcAAKzAN2EK:  Yeah, he’s unique for a college senior in that we think that there’s an upside left to him. We think we may be just seeing the tip of the iceberg with this kid. It’s unusual to talk about a senior draft pick that way, but that’s kind of how we see him.

AF:  And how do you feel about him defensively in center field?

EK:  We think he’s got the ability to stay in center. But he also has the ability to play all three of the outfield positions. He’s played some infield and has some versatility. I think we’re just going to see how things shake out with his development and see where he best fits as time goes on.

AF: So it’s my understanding that all your top ten picks have signed except for Skye Bolt and Richie Martin. Of course, Richie Martin has been in the College World Series, but are you anticipating having all of your top ten picks in the fold before long?

EK:  Yes, I think we’re very close to finishing things up with Skye hopefully this week. And then with Richie, we obviously have to wait until after the World Series is over.

AF:  And I think you’ve signed 27 of the 40 guys so far. So it seems like you’ve moved pretty quickly and taken care of business pretty fast this year.

EK:  We did a lot of leg work before the draft. So it made things easier once the draft ended.

AF:  And I imagine we’re probably going to see most of these college pitchers from the first ten rounds going to Vermont this year.

EK:  Yeah, they will all go to Arizona to begin with, because we do our medical stuff and we do our orientation. And then we have to evaluate where they are in their throwing programs. Some of these guys haven’t thrown for three weeks, so we’ve got to get them back into shape before sending them out. But ultimately, yeah, most of them will be in Vermont for the bulk of the summer.

AF:  That’s what I expected. By the way, does part of the orientation these days include “what not to say on Twitter?”

EK:  [Laughter] I think that starts long before they get to us! But we certainly do talk to them about things like that, and we talk to them about it repeatedly!

AF:  Obviously, the draft is the centerpiece of your year. But now that we’re about a week removed from the draft, besides talking to people like me, what’s your time primarily taken up with now?

EK:  We’re putting 2015 in the books, and we’re getting ready for 2016. Next week, I’m going to an event that’s going to feature players for 2016. But there’s a big event going on this week that we have scouts at. It really doesn’t stop. We start up almost immediately.

AF:  So nobody’s taking off and going on vacation the week after the draft?

EK:  Not really. We’re taking a little time to catch our breath and then we’re back at it!

AF:  Well, thanks for taking some of that time to talk with us!

 

A’s 2015 Draft Class

#1 Richie Martin SS (Florida), #2 Mikey White SS (Alabama), #3 Dakota Chalmers RHP (HS-GA), #4 Skye Bolt CF (North Carolina), #5 Kevin Duchene LHP (Illinois), #6 Bowdien Derby RHP (San Diego State), #7 Kyle Friedrichs RHP (Long Beach State), #8 Nick Collins C (Georgetown), #9 Jared Lyons LHP (Liberty), #10 Steven Pallares OF (San Diego State)

#11 James Terrell OF (HS-CA), #12 Chris Iriart 1B (Houston), #13 Brett Siddall OF (Canisius), #14 Boomer Biegalski RHP (Florida State), #15 Ryan Howell 2B (Nevada-Reno), #16 Dustin Hurlbutt RHP (Tabor), #17 Brent Wheatley RHP (USC), #18 Brett Sunde C (Western Michigan), #19 Seth Brown 1B (Lewis-Clark St), #20 James Naile RHP (Alabama-Birmingham)

#21 Andrew Tomasovich LHP (Charleston Southern), #22 Brady Bramlett RHP (Mississippi), #23 Eric Senior OF (HS-ON), #24 Heath Bowers RHP (Campbell), #25 Evan Manarino LHP (Irvine), #26 Jordan Devencenzi C (Nevada-Reno), #27 Xavier Altamirano RHP (Oral Roberts), #28 Marc Berube RHP (Pittsburgh), #29 Armando Ruiz RHP (Alabama State), #30 Brendan Butler RHP (Dowling)

#31 John Gorman RHP (Boston College), #32 Michael Murray RHP (Florida Gulf Coast), #33 Mike Martin CF (Harvard), #34 Shane Conlon 1B (Kansas State), #35 Tim Proudfoot SS (Texas Tech), #36 Troy Rallings RHP (Washington), #37 Andy Cox LHP (Tennessee), #38 Chris Cullen C (HS-GA), #39 Gregory Fettes C (Kentucky), #40 Nick Maton SS (HS-IL)

*          *          *

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 2015 Top 10 Draft Picks

A's top pick Richie Martin

A’s top pick Richie Martin

Now that day two of the amateur draft is complete, it’s time to run down the A’s top ten picks of the 2015 draft. After taking two collegiate shortstops with their top two picks on Monday, the team continued to prefer college players on Tuesday but focused more on finding promising young pitchers.

Overall, the team took five pitchers and five position players with its top ten picks. The five position players picked were all up-the-middle guys, including the two college shortstops, along with two college center fielders and one college catcher. Of the pitchers, four were college arms – two right-handers and two left-handers.

The only non-college player selected by the A’s in the top ten rounds was 6’3” high school right-hander Dakota Chalmers. Considering the fact that the Chlamers has committed to Georgia, could he possibly pose a signing risk? We’ve heard that the A’s are confident that won’t be an issue.

As we mentioned yesterday, top pick Richie Martin is a 20-year-old shortstop out of Florida who came in second in the Cade Cod League in hitting last summer with a .364 average. He also possesses good speed and seems to have the defensive ability to stick at shortstop in the long-term.

Second pick Mikey White is a 21-year-old shortstop out of Alabama who’s always been solid at the plate and has shown a consistent ability to get on base, but many think he may ultimately end up being a better fit at second base.

The three hitters taken on Tuesday – catcher Nick Collins and center fielders Skye Bolt and Steven Pallares – all fit the classic A’s profile as power and patience guys. All of them have walked at least as many times as they’ve struck out this season and all possess a slugging percentage of at least .449.

The pitchers are primarily high strikeout guys with good control. San Diego State right-hander Bowdien Derby led the Mountain West Conference in strikeouts with 131 over 103 innings of work, while Long Beach State right-hander Kyle Friedrichs showed exceptional control with just 12 walks to go along with 109 strikeouts.

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.

 

rmbrn_richie050513_10715444_8col21st Round

Richie Martin

Shortstop

Florida

Age: 20 / 6’0” – 185 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 5 HR / 33 BB / 34 K / .292 AVG / .404 OBP / .424 SLG

 

MBA2nd Round

Mikey White

Shortstop

Alabama

Age: 21 / 6’1” – 195 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 4 HR / 31 BB / 47 K / .339 AVG / .444 OBP / .537 SLG

 

dc_MG_8530_resize23rd Round

Dakota Chalmers

Right-Handed Pitcher

North Forsyth High School (GA)

Age: 18 / 6’3” – 170 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2015 High School Stats: 51 1/3 IP / 27 H / 11 ER / 37 BB / 82 K / 1.50 ERA / 1.25 WHIP

 

sbbolttt24th Round

Skye Bolt

Center Fielder

North Carolina

Age: 21 / 6’2” – 180 lbs.

Bats: Both / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 10 HR / 40 BB / 40 K / .259 AVG / .383 OBP / .449 SLG

 

kdILLOSUKevinDuchene25th Round

Kevin Duchene

Left-Handed Pitcher

Illinois

Age: 21 / 6’2” – 210 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Left

2015 College Stats: 102 2/3 IP / 89 H / 20 ER / 18 BB / 88 K / 1.75 ERA / 1.04 WHIP

 

bdDerby1.0.0b6th Round

Bowdien Derby

Right-Handed Pitcher

San Diego State

Age: 21 / 5’10” – 180 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 103 IP / 94 H / 38 ER / 34 BB / 131 K / 3.32 ERA / 1.24 WHIP

 

Kyle Friedrichs7th Round

Kyle Friedrichs

Right-Handed Pitcher

Long Beach State

Age: 23 / 6’1” – 190 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 100 IP / 90 H / 31 ER / 12 BB / 109 K / 2.79 ERA / 1.02 WHIP

 

ncSHallGtown-NickCollinsXYZ28th Round

Nick Collins

Catcher

Georgetown

Age: 21 / 6’2” – 228 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 7 HR / 22 BB / 21 K / .370 AVG / .435 OBP / .540 SLG

 

jlbaseball-action-jaredlyons9-new29th Round

Jared Lyons

Left-Handed Pitcher

Liberty

Age: 22 / 6’0” – 190 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Left

2014 College Stats: 50 2/3 IP / 40 H / 16 ER / 12 BB / 48 K / 2.84 ERA / 1.03 WHIP

 

spCGcLRYsWcAAKzAN210th Round

Steven Pallares

Center Fielder

San Diego State

Age: 22 / 6’2” – 185 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 9 HR / 37 BB / 33 K / .352 AVG / .447 OBP / .523 SLG

 

#11 James Terrell OF (HS-CA), #12 Chris Iriart 1B (Houston), #13 Brett Siddall OF (Canisius), #14 Boomer Biegalski RHP (FL St), #15 Ryan Howell 2B (NV Reno), #16 Dustin Hurlbutt RHP (Tabor), #17 Brent Wheatley RHP (USC), #18 Brett Sunde C (West Mich), #19 Seth Brown 1B (Lewis-Clark St), #20 James Naile RHP (AL-Birm)

#21 Andrew Tomasovich LHP (Charleston South), #22 Brady Bramlett RHP (Mississippi), #23 Eric Senior OF (HS-ON), #24 Heath Bowers RHP (Campbell), #25 Evan Manarino LHP (Irvine), #26 Jordan Devencenzi C (NV Reno), #27 Xavier Altamirano RHP (Oral Roberts), #28 Marc Berube RHP (Pittsburgh), #29 Armando Ruiz RHP (AL St), #30 Brendan Butler RHP (Dowling)

#31 John Gorman RHP (Boston Coll), #32 Michael Murray RHP (FL Gulf Coast), #33 Mike Martin CF (Harvard), #34 Shane Conlon 1B (KS St), #35 Tim Proudfoot SS (TX Tech), #36 Troy Rallings RHP (Washington), #37 Andy Cox LHP (Tennessee), #38 Chris Cullen C (HS-GA), #39 Gregory Fettes C (Kentucky), #40 Nick Maton SS (HS-IL)

 

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.

A’s Pick a Pair of Collegiate Shortstops on Day 1 of the Draft

rmCHBTsrKUYAA4geDFor the second year in a row, the A’s selected a collegiate infielder with their first pick in the amateur draft. Last year it was third baseman Matt Chapman, and this year it was shortstop Richie Martin.

Martin is a 20-year-old junior out of Florida who came in second in the Cade Cod League in hitting last summer with a .364 average. He also possesses good speed and seems to have the defensive ability to stick at shortstop in the long-term.

The A’s followed up their first pick by selecting their second college shortstop of the day, Mikey White out of Alabama. White is a 21-year-old junior who’s always been solid at the plate and has shown a consistent ability to get on base, but many think he may ultimately end up being a better fit at second base.

The A’s aren’t expecting to have any trouble signing either of their top two picks this year. The draft resumes on Tuesday with rounds 3 through 10. We’ll have more complete coverage of the A’s top ten picks tomorrow. But in the meantime, here’s the basic rundown on the A’s first two picks of the 2015 amateur draft…

 

rmbrn_richie050513_10715444_8col21st Round

Richie Martin

Shortstop

Florida

Age: 20 / 6’0” – 185 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 5 HR / 33 BB / 34 K / .292 AVG / .404 OBP / .424 SLG

 

MBA2nd Round

Mikey White

Shortstop

Alabama

Age: 21 / 6’1” – 195 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2015 College Stats: 4 HR / 31 BB / 47 K / .339 AVG / .444 OBP / .537 SLG

 

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.

Taking a Look at A’s Recent Drafts

Addison Russell

Addison Russell

With the major league amateur draft set to take place today, it’s a good time to take a look back at some of the A’s recent drafts.

We’ll focus on the top five picks from the team’s last three drafts and examine how those players are currently performing and how they’re shaping up as major league prospects.

So take a look and see how you think the A’s have done in recent drafts – and let’s see how they do later today! This article was also posted on Athletics Nation earlier today…

 

–2014 DRAFT–

Matt Chapman

Matt Chapman

#1 – 3B Matt Chapman

Stockton – A+ (A’s organization)

8 HR / 13 BB / 33 K / .236 AVG / .325 OBP / .538 SLG / .863 OPS

#2 – RHP Daniel Gossett

Beloit – A (A’s organization)

54 1/3 IP / 62 H / 34 ER / 30 BB / 47 K / 5.63 ERA / 1.69 WHIP

#3 – RHP Brett Graves

Beloit – A (A’s organization)

63 IP / 65 H / 29 ER / 25 BB / 38 K / 4.14 ERA / 1.43 WHIP

#4 – RHP Jordan Schwartz

Beloit – A (A’s organization)

36 2/3 IP / 56 H / 37 ER / 27 BB / 35 K / 9.08 ERA / 2.26 WHIP

#5 – RHP Heath Fillmyer

Beloit – A (A’s organization)

30 IP / 41 H / 24 ER / 15 BB / 25 K / 7.20 ERA / 1.87 WHIP

Despite all the A’s deal-making in the offseason, all the A’s top picks from last year’s draft are still in the system. Top pick Matt Chapman, who was touted as a defensively-gifted third baseman with raw power potential, got a late start to the season after injuring his knee right before the start of spring training. The 22-year-old finally got started at Stockton about a week into May and he’s really been heating up of late with 5 home runs over his last 7 games, and he now has 8 homers in just 106 at-bats so far this season. And if he can keep up that pace, Chapman’s prospects could be looking good. The A’s decided to insert their top four pitching picks from last year’s draft directly into the Class-A Beloit Snappers’ starting rotation this season, with mixed results. 3rd-rounder Brett Graves so far has emerged as the pick of the litter. His fastball gets up to 95 mph and he induces a lot of ground balls while showing good control but his off-speed pitches could still use some work. 2nd-rounder Daniel Gossett has a solid fastball and breaking ball and generates lots of swings-and-misses but his changeup is still a work in progress and he’s shown a tendency to surrender the long ball. But both Graves and Gossett have shown the potential to improve as the season goes on. On the other side of the coin though, 4th-rounder Jordan Schwartz struggled mightily at Beloit and was recently removed from the Snappers roster and is expected to start pitching for short-season Vermont as soon as its season begins in a couple of weeks. 5th-rounder Heath Fillmyer, who spent most of last month on the disabled list, has also struggled but still remains with the Snappers for the time being despite taking the loss in all 6 of his starts this season. Overall, Chapman has shown the potential to develop into a solid power-hitting corner infielder, while Gossett and Graves could develop into rotation candidates one day, but they’ve still got a ways to go. And as far as Schwartz and Fillmyer go, it remains to be seen.

 

–2013 DRAFT–

Billy McKinney

Billy McKinney

#1 – OF Billy McKinney

Tennessee/Myrtle Beach – AA/A+ (Cubs Organization)

4 HR / 23 BB / 26 K / .324 AVG / .399 OBP / .497 SLG / .896 OPS

#2 – LHP Dillon Overton

Stockton – A+ (A’s organization)

46 1/3 IP / 45 H / 19 ER / 11 BB / 44 K / 3.69 ERA / 1.21 WHIP

#3 – SS Chad Pinder

Midland – AA (A’s organization)

7 HR / 18 BB / 47 K / .294 AVG / .364 OBP / .457 SLG / .820 OPS

#4 – 1B-3B Ryon Healy

Midland – AA (A’s organization)

4 HR / 17 BB / 35 K / .273 AVG / .325 OBP / .380 SLG / .704 OPS

#5 – LHP Chris Kohler

Extended Spring Training (A’s organization)

The A’s started off the 2013 draft somewhat surprisingly, by picking a high school outfielder with a sweet swing – Billy McKinney. I’ve heard that A’s GM Billy Beane had to be sold on the pick by the scouting department, which might help explain the quickness with which McKinney ended up being dealt. But since going to the Cubs in the deal for hurlers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel last summer, the 20-year-old outfielder has shown that he can indeed hit, consistently batting over.300 with a solid number of extra-base hits, particularly doubles. He started the season at High-A but is currently one of the youngest players in the Double-A Southern League, and he hasn’t missed a beat at that level. The Cubs clearly don’t see McKinney’s future in center field though. Ever since he joined the Cubs organization last summer, he hasn’t started a single game in center, instead spending most of his time in right. 2nd-rounder Dillon Overton got off to an inauspicious start by undergoing Tommy John surgery before ever throwing a pitch in the A’s organization. But Overton’s been solid so far this season for Stockton. His command has been excellent and, despite the fact that he’s still recovering his velocity, he’s been posting solid strikeout numbers. And the 23-year-old could still shape up as an effective major league hurler somewhere down the line. 3rd-rounder Chad Pinder has been one of the fastest movers of the A’s 2013 draft class. After playing second base at Stockton last year, the 23-year-old’s been playing a solid shortstop for Midland this season while showing some pop with 7 home runs so far in a low-offense league, and Pinder could prove to be a middle infield option at some point in the future. 4th-rounder Ryon Healy has been on the same fast track as Pinder while spending time at both first and third base. He’s shown some pop at times as well, but his plate discipline could still stand some improvement. Meanwhile, 5th-rounder Chris Kohler has shown potential but has been slowed by injuries and has spent this season at extended spring training in Arizona with the expectation that he should be getting into action sometime after the draft. He missed all of last season. But in his only competitive play in the Arizona League in 2013, Kohler showed some real promise by striking out 32 batters in just 22 2/3 innings as an 18-year-old. Now 20, he’s still got some time to show what he can do.

 

–2012 DRAFT–

Daniel Robertson

Daniel Robertson

#1 – SS-2B Addison Russell

Cubs – MLB

4 HR / 10 BB / 53 K / .241 AVG / .295 OBP / .407 SLG / .702 OPS

Iowa – AAA (Cubs organization)

1 HR / 1 BB / 7 K / .318 AVG / .326 OBP / .477 SLG / .803 OPS

#2 – SS Daniel Robertson

Montgomery – AA (Rays organization)

3 HR / 17 BB / 41 K / .272 AVG / .347 OBP / .436 SLG / .783 OPS

#3 – 1B Matt Olson

Midland – AA (A’s organization)

7 HR / 50 BB / 56 K / .222 AVG / .378 OBP / .407 SLG / .785 OPS

#4 – C Bruce Maxwell

Midland – AA (A’s organization)

1 HR / 19 BB / 22 K / .233 AVG / .319 OBP / .288 SLG / .607 OPS

#5 – RHP Nolan Sanburn

Birmingham – AA (White Sox organization)

22 IP / 20 H / 12 ER / 14 BB / 22 K / 4.91 ERA / 1.55 WHIP

Well, we all know about the A’s top pick in the 2012 draft – the golden child, Addison Russell. While most people didn’t know much about the young Floridian before the draft, it didn’t take long for A’s fans to fall in love with the humble but hot-hitting infielder. Russell shot through the A’s system before being dealt to the Cubs, along with Billy McKinney, in last summer’s deal for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel. And Russell’s rise only hastened with his arrival in the Cubs camp. Russell became the first member of the A’s 2012 draft class to make his debut in the major leagues when he broke in with the Cubs in April at the age of 21 (though Max Muncy made his major league debut with the A’s just four days later). Russell has been the Cubs’ everyday second baseman since then, despite appearing in just 5 games at second base in his minor league career. Russell has had his ups and downs so far in the majors, as anyone that young will, but he’s already shown some pop by accumulating 12 doubles in his first 40 games and will undoubtedly settle in and likely become a fixture in the Cubs infield for many years to come. One of Russell’s best friends and former roommates, 2nd-rounder Daniel Robertson, went to the Rays in the Ben Zobrist deal. Also a shortstop, Robertson has shown some solid doubles power while playing at Double-A this year. He left last Tuesday’s game with an apparent wrist injury but is currently considered one of Tampa Bay’s top prospects and the team’s shortstop of the future. 3rd-rounder Matt Olson is the top pick from the A’s 2012 draft class still left in the system. Olson has always been known for his power and patience, leading the A’s system last year in home runs with 37 and in walks with 117. This season at Midland, which is a notorious death trap for power hitters, the 21-year-old so far has put up 7 home runs while walking an incredible 50 times in his first 55 games. Olson’s also been making a number of starts in right field to increase his versatility and perhaps help him find an opening in the majors a little faster. 4th-rounder Bruce Maxwell has struggled a bit at the Double-A level so far this season, and the backstop will have to show greater production at the plate if he hopes to move up the ladder in the near future. 5th-rounder Nolan Sanburn was dealt to the White Sox in the Adam Dunn deal last season. The 23-year-old has shown some promise by striking out a batter per inning throughout his minor league career, but he’s also been slowed by injuries and is currently on the disabled list at Double-A Birmingham. If he can stay healthy though, Sanburn could prove to be an effective bullpen piece for the Sox somewhere down the line.

*          *          *

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Exclusive: Get the Inside Scoop on Oakland’s Top 10 Draft Picks of 2014 from A’s Scouting Director Eric Kubota

A's scouting director Eric Kubota

A’s scouting director Eric Kubota

After unexpectedly taking high school players with their top pick in each of the past two years, the A’s returned to their old, familiar ways this year, selecting college players with eight of the team’s top ten picks. The A’s made 21-year-old Cal State Fullerton third baseman Matt Chapman their top pick this year. Chapman is best known for his solid defense and strong throwing arm at third, but the A’s also like his plate discipline and think that he has the potential to develop into a legitimate power hitter.

The man responsible for overseeing the A’s efforts in the amateur draft is scouting director Eric Kubota. Kubota started out his career in the baseball world by interning for the A’s in the mid-‘80s and eventually served as the assistant director of scouting and the supervisor of international scouting before succeeding Grady Fuson as scouting director following his departure after the 2001 season.

We talked to Kubota about a week and a half after the draft, just a day after top pick Matt Chapman’s signing was officially announced. At the time we spoke, the A’s had signed seven of their top ten picks, but Kubota expressed confidence that the remaining three would all be in the fold before long. And we were happy to get his take on the A’s main man, Matt Chapman, along with all the team’s other top ten picks from the first ten rounds of the 2014 draft…

AF:  I really want to get a quick take from you on all the A’s top ten draft picks this year. But before we start getting into this year’s draft class, is there anyone from last year’s draft class who really gives you a particular sense of pride when you look at them this year?

EK:  Well, we’re certainly happy with Billy McKinney’s progress. His batting average might not show it, but he’s a high school guy and he’s playing in advanced Single-A, so it was really a stretch for him. I think he’s actually swung the bat better than the numbers have necessarily shown. So we’re certainly happy with him.

mcimg_6735bAF:  Well, it was just announced earlier this week that you signed your #1 pick, third baseman Matt Chapman out of Cal State Fullerton. So tell me what really excited you most about him?

EK:  With him, it’s really the upside. I think he’s just starting to scratch the surface of what he can be. We know that there’s a ton of impact power in his swing. And we think, with just a few adjustments, his power will be up there. So we really think, down the road, we’ll have a chance to get a third baseman who can affect the game both on defense and at the plate.

AF:  Prior to the draft, a lot of people were projecting him as more of a 2nd-round guy. Was there anything in particular that you guys saw in him that you placed a higher value on than some other people did?

EK:  I would say that probably everybody who was picking towards where we were picking in the draft had him in their conversation. Everybody’s going to have different positions and there’s going to be people who evaluate the draft outside the industry…but just about every team that picked at the back half at least had some conversation about him.

dgVVLYQGJKSGDGSMH.20131021153816bAF:  Your #2 pick was RHP Daniel Gossett out of Clemson, who seems to fall into the mold of a slightly smaller-body-type guy like Sonny Gray. Tell me what you really liked about him, and are smaller pitchers the new market inefficiency?

EK:  I don’t know that that’s necessarily the case. We don’t really think of him as small…Daniel’s taller than 6 feet. So we didn’t really take his height into account. We think he’s plenty physical enough to do what he needs to do. He’s got very good stuff. He throws 92-94 mph. He throws strikes with his fastball and locates it down. He has an excellent breaking ball and a very good changeup.

AF:  Are there any major league pitchers you’d compare him to?

EK:  I hesitate to compare anybody to Sonny Gray, just because what he’s done is so incredible. But he’s on the less-physical side – probably you could say David Cone, physically anyway, those are the kind of people you could compare him to.

bgbrettgraves2AF:  Your #3 pick was RHP Brett Graves out of Missouri, who a number of people really liked, but his strikeout numbers aren’t really quite as eye-popping as a lot of the guys you’ve taken. So tell me what made you want to go with him.

EK:  He’s a little bit different. He’s more of a pitch-to-contact guy. He throws hard up there at 94-95 mph, but he’s more of a sinkerball type pitcher than a strikeout guy now…but we like the fact that he keeps the ball out of the air and throws strikes and he throws hard.

AF:  And he’s officially still unsigned, correct?

EK:  Correct, yes.

jsjordan-schwartz3bAF:  Your #4 pick was RHP Jordan Schwartz out of Niagara, who didn’t seem to be quite so high on some people’s radar before the draft. So what did you like about him?

EK:  He’s a former position player. We really liked the athleticism. He saw him up to 97 mph with a strikeout breaking ball. We think he’s kind of an upside guy. He’s kind of untapped…we could get a really high ceiling with him once he starts getting some professional instruction.

AF:  Your #5 pick was RHP Heath Fillmyer, who’s from a smaller school, Mercer County Community College out of New Jersey. So what did he do to get himself on your radar?

SONY DSCEK:  He’s very similar to Schwartz in that he’s also a converted position player. We saw a very good fastball, 94-95 mph, and an above-average curveball. He’s another guy who’s a real upside kid. With player development, we can give him to [minor league pitching coordinator] Scott Emerson and some of our pitching people in player development, and the sky’s the limit.

AF: And he’s still officially unsigned, right?

EK:  Yes.

AF:  Your #6 pick was high school shortstop Trace Loehr out of Oregon. It was announced that he signed earlier this week. What did you like so much about him to make him your first high school pick on the board, especially since he’d already committed to Oregon?

tl1339-7-Red-7bEK:  There’s a lot to like about Trace. He’s got tools. He’s a plus runner. We really like the way he swings the bat. We really, really love his makeup. We think there’s just a lot here. He’s got a lot of the traits that we think make players successful in the long run, and we’re excited about that.

AF:  Was there one thing in particular that really jumped out for you about him, or was it more of a well-rounded package that he presented?

EK:  No, we think he can really swing the bat. He’s got a chance to be a very good defender too, but I think the thing that we were most drawn to was the bat.

AF:  So kind of like with Billy McKinney where you really liked the swing?

EK:  Yeah, kind of. It’s a little different in that he plays the middle infield, so it’s a little different, but yeah.

AF:  Are there any major leaguers you might compare him to?

EK:  Yeah, I thought a little bit about Kyle Seager when I saw him.

bcuva_baseball_branden_cogswell_2013_01_home3AF:  Your #7 pick was another middle infielder, Branden Cogswell out of Virginia. His offensive numbers weren’t really that eye-popping, but he was taking a lot of walks and getting on base. So what did you like about him?

EK:  Well, that was one of the things obviously. We liked his ability to get on base – we valued that. But we also really liked his defense. He played second base this year, but we think he can play shortstop. We really like his defense and think the offense will be more than enough to allow him to be a major league player.

AF:  And he’s the only other one of the top ten who still hasn’t signed yet. He’s still playing, right?

EK:  Correct, he’s still playing.

bk1339-3-Green-7bAF:  Your #8 pick was the only high school pitcher you took in the top ten, RHP Branden Kelliher out of Washington. What so impressed you about him to make him the one high school pitcher you went with in the top ten?

EK:  We valued him higher than that spot, and we were happy that he fell to us. We’ve seen him up to 96 mph. We’ve seen a good breaking ball. He’s probably more on the slight side physicality-wise. There’s some similarity to a guy we took out of the northwest 12 or 13 years ago – Jeremy Bonderman. Same kind of physicality, same kind of stuff.

mffagan_oacAF:  Your #9 pick was LHP Mike Fagan out of Princeton, who was the only left-hander you took in the top ten. Tell me a little bit about what you liked about him.

EK:  He’s a guy who’s always had a lot physical ability. We’ve seen a lot of him – we’ve scouted him quite a bit. And this year, he really turned the corner as far as his performance. He’s a left-hander who throws up to 92-93 mph and he’s got a good breaking ball. He’ll go out as a starting pitcher. But I could imagine him potentially being a left-handed specialist down the road. It might be a little bit of a lazy comparison, but he kind of reminds me of Craig Breslow, another Ivy League left-hander.

cmPdineSJU-Miller2AF:  And your #10 pick was RHP Corey Miller out of Pepperdine, who was actually one of the physically bigger pitchers you took in the top ten. What did you like about him?

EK:  He’s a physical kid with a good body who’s got solid stuff with a history of pitching well and winning.

AF:  Are you expecting to sign all your top ten picks?

EK:  We hope to get them all done, and we feel confident that we can get them all done.

AF:  Is it safe to assume that most of the college pitchers we’ve discussed are likely to end up at Vermont this year?

EK:  Well, they’re all going to Arizona to begin with. And yeah, it’s likely that most of them will be in Vermont before the end of the summer.

AF:  And finally, how excited are you to see Matt Chapman signed, and how excited are you to see him out there playing in the coming weeks?

EK:  Very excited. You know, the whole scouting staff will be living and dying by those box scores this summer!

AF:  Okay, great! Thanks a lot.

 

A’s 2014 Draft Class

#1 3B Matt Chapman (CSU Fullerton), #2 RHP Daniel Gossett (Clemson), #3 RHP Brett Graves (Missouri), #4 RHP Jordan Schwartz (Niagara), #5 RHP Heath Fillmyer (Mercer College), #6 SS Trace Loehr (Rex Putnam HS), #7 SS Branden Cogswell (Virginia), #8 RHP Branden Kelliher (Lake Stevens HS), #9 #LHP Mike Fagan (Princeton), #10 RHP Corey Miller (Pepperdine)

#11 RHP Joel Seddon (South Carolina), #12 RHP Tyler Willman (Western Illinois), #13 2B Max Kuhn (Kentucky), #14 C Casey Schroeder (Polk State), #15 2B Trent Gilbert (Arizona), #16 3B Jose Brizuela (Florida State), #17 C Eric Cheray (Missouri State), #18 LHP Michael Nolan (Oklahoma City U.), #19 C Tom Gavitt (Bryant), #20 RHP Koby Guana (CSU Fullerton)

#21 SS Tim Proudfoot (Texas Tech), #22 RHP Brendan McCurry (Oklahoma State), #23 1B Collin Ferguson (St. Mary’s), #24 RHP Dawson Brown (U. West Florida), #25 CF Joseph Estrada (Colegio Hector Urdaneta HS), #26 RHP Rob Huber (Duke), #27 CF J.P. Sportman (Cent. Conn. State), #28 RHP Corey Walter (West Virginia), #29 LHP Cody Stull (Belmont Abbey), #30 LHP Derek Beasley (South Carolina-Aiken)

#31 RHP Tyler Schimpf (Capital Christian HS), #32 CF Denz’l Chapman (Junipero Serra HS), #33 C Michael Rivera (Venice HS), #34 1B John Nogowski (Florida State), #35 CF Austen Swift (Bishop Allen Academy HS), #36 OF Tyler Spoon (Arkansas), #37 OF Brock Lundquist (Fountain Valley HS), #38 CF Colt Atwood (Sam Houston State), #39 2B Payton Squier (Greenway HS), #40 SS Bryson Brigman (Valley Christian HS)

 

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

Getting To Know: The A’s 2014 Top 10 Draft Picks

Matt Chapman

A’s top pick Matt Chapman

Yesterday, we gave you the lowdown on the A’s top 2 picks selected on Day 1 of the amateur draft. And now that Day 2 is complete, it’s time to run down the A’s top 10 picks of the 2014 draft.

After taking a third baseman with their top pick this year, the team focused on pitching on Day 2. And 7 of the A’s top 10 picks turned out to be pitchers this year, only one of whom is a high school hurler.

Besides the team’s top pick, Matt Chapman, the other two position players who ended up in the A’s top 10 were both shortstops. High school shortstop Trace Loehr is an Oregon State recruit, so he there could potentially be a signing issue with him. The only other high-schooler taken by the A’s in the top 10 was RHP Branden Kelliher out of Washington. But otherwise, the team targeted half a dozen college hurlers, highlighted by Clemson’s Daniel Gossett and Missouri’s Brett Graves.

We’ll be learning a lot more about all the A’s top picks in the coming days and should be getting the chance to see most of them in Vermont or Arizona, or possibly even Beloit, before the month is through. So stay tuned to A’s Farm to see how the A’s latest batch of top prospects pans out!

 

mcMB13476e1st Round

Matt Chapman

Third Baseman

Cal State Fullerton (CA)

Age: 21 / 6’2” – 215 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2014 College Stats: 6 HR / 27 BB / 26 K / .312 AVG / .412 OBP / .498 SLG

 

Daniel Gossett2nd Round

Daniel Gossett

Right-Handed Pitcher

Clemson University (SC)

Age: 21 / 6’1” – 195 lbs.

Throws: Right / Bats: Right

2014 College Stats: 107 1/3 IP / 78 H / 23 ER / 30 BB / 107 K / 1.93 ERA

 

bgbrettgraves23rd Round

Brett Graves

Right-Handed Pitcher

University of Missouri (MO)

Age: 21 / 6’1” – 173 lbs.

Throws: Right / Bats: Right

2014 College Stats: 93 IP / 98 H / 40 ER / 18 BB / 64 K / 3.87 ERA

 

jsjordan-schwartz3b4th Round

Jordan Schwartz

Right-Handed Pitcher

Niagara University (NY)

Age: 22 / 6’2” – 195 lbs.

Throws: Right / Bats: Right

2014 College Stats: 95 1/3 IP / 76 H / 33 ER / 35 BB / 109 K / 3.12 ERA

 

SONY DSC5th Round

Heath Fillmyer

Right-Handed Pitcher

Mercer County Community College (NJ)

Age: 20 / 6’1” – 190 lbs.

Throws: Right / Bats: Right

2014 College Stats: 66 IP / 38 H / 5 ER / 25 BB / 94 K / 0.68 ERA

 

tl1339-7-Red-7b6th Round

Trace Loehr

Shortstop

Rex Putnam High School (OR)

Age: 19 / 5’10” – 175 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Right

2014 High School Stats: 1 HR / 19 BB / 8 K / .393 AVG / .562 OBP / .803 SLG

 

bcuva_baseball_branden_cogswell_2013_01_home37th Round

Branden Cogswell

Shortstop

University of Virginia (VA)

Age: 21 / 6’1” – 180 lbs.

Bats: Left / Throws: Right

2014 College Stats: 0 HR / 35 BB / 17 K / .295 AVG / .394 OBP / .341 SLG

 

bk1339-3-Green-7b8th Round

Branden Kelliher

Right-Handed Pitcher

Lake Stevens High School (WA)

Age: 18 / 5’11” – 175 lbs.

Throws: Right / Bats: Right

2014 High School Stats: 1.32 ERA

 

mffagan_oac9th Round

Mike Fagan

Left-Handed Pitcher

Princeton University (NJ)

Age: 22 / 6’0” – 185 lbs.

Throws: Left / Bats: Right

2014 College Stats: 58 IP / 46 H / 15 ER / 18 BB / 77 K / 2.33 ERA

 

cmPdineSJU-Miller210th Round

Corey Miller

Right-Handed Pitcher

Pepperdine University (CA)

Age: 22 / 6’3” – 190 lbs.

Throws: Right / Bats: Right

2014 College Stats: 113 IP / 92 H / 22 ER / 29 BB / 80 K / 1.75 ERA

 

#11 RHP Joel Seddon (South Carolina), #12 RHP Tyler Willman (Western Illinois), #13 2B Max Kuhn (Kentucky), #14 C Casey Schroeder (Polk State), #15 2B Trent Gilbert (Arizona), #16 3B Jose Brizuela (Florida State), #17 C Eric Cheray (Missouri State), #18 LHP Michael Nolan (Oklahoma City U.), #19 C Tom Gavitt (Bryant), #20 RHP Koby Guana (CSU Fullerton)

#21 SS Tim Proudfoot (Texas Tech), #22 RHP Brendan McCurry (Oklahoma State), #23 1B Collin Ferguson (St. Mary’s), #24 RHP Dawson Brown (U. West Florida), #25 CF Joseph Estrada (Colegio Hector Urdaneta HS), #26 RHP Rob Huber (Duke), #27 CF J.P. Sportman (Cent. Conn. State), #28 RHP Corey Walter (West Virginia), #29 LHP Cody Stull (Belmont Abbey), #30 LHP Derek Beasley (South Carolina-Aiken)

#31 RHP Tyler Schimpf (Capital Christian HS), #32 CF Denz’l Chapman (Junipero Serra HS), #33 C Michael Rivera (Venice HS), #34 1B John Nogowski (Florida State), #35 CF Austen Swift (Bishop Allen Academy HS), #36 OF Tyler Spoon (Arkansas), #37 OF Brock Lundquist (Fountain Valley HS), #38 CF Colt Atwood (Sam Houston State), #39 2B Payton Squier (Greenway HS), #40 SS Bryson Brigman (Valley Christian HS)

 

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

A’s Take College Infielder and Pitcher with Top 2 Picks on Day 1 of Draft

A's top pick Matt Chapman keeping his eye on the ball!

A’s top pick Matt Chapman keeping his eye on the ball!

After unexpectedly taking high school players with their top picks the last two years, the A’s returned to their old, familiar ways this year, selecting a pair of collegiate players with the team’s top two draft picks on Thursday. In the first round, Oakland went with 21-year-old Cal State Fullerton third baseman Matt Chapman. The team then followed up by taking 21-year-old Clemson University RHP Daniel Gossett in the second round.

Chapman is best known for his solid defense and strong throwing arm at third. The A’s also like his plate discipline and think that he has the potential to develop into a legitimate power hitter. In 2014, Chapman posted a .312/.412/.498 slash line with 16 doubles, 6 home runs, 27 walks and 26 strikeouts in 205 at-bats for Fullerton. Meanwhile, Gossett flashes three solid pitches – a good fastball, an impressive breaking ball and an above-average changeup. He’s been Clemson’s top starter and posted a 1.93 ERA while striking out 107 in 107 1/3 innings this year at Clemson.

The A’s top pick, Chapman, was not originally drafted out of high school, but A’s scouting director Eric Kubota said that Chapman “was clearly the best player left on the board at the time we picked.” Kubota also confirmed that Chapman worked out and took batting practice in front of A’s brass at the Coliseum on Tuesday. Kubota characterized Chapman as a potential “elite defender at third base,” praised his plate discipline, and predicted “this is a guy who is going to develop into a power hitter as his pro career progresses.”

Chapman himself isn’t shy when it comes to boasting about his defensive abilities. When I asked about his greatest strength as a ballplayer, Chapman was quick to claim that he considers himself “the best” defensive college third baseman out there. And Kubota said the A’s like his attitude: “I think he is confident, but I think there is a little part of him too that is a little naïve in terms of how good he might end up becoming. His talents have continued to improve.”

Though Chapman played shortstop for three years in high school and Kubota claims the A’s think he could still play shortstop, the A’s scouting director said, “We really see him as a third baseman starting his pro career and continuing on.”

As far as comparisons go, Kubota said “it’s easy” to compare Chapman to current A’s third baseman Josh Donaldson: “When I wake up at three in the morning in the middle of a dream…that’s kind of the profile that if everything comes together, that’s the player we are hoping to get here.”

Chapman compared himself physically to Evan Longoria and Troy Tulowitzki. And A’s minor league pitcher and fellow former southern California prep player Chris Kohler referred to Chapman as A’s infield prospect Daniel Robertson’s twin, claiming that he “plays so much like him.”

Chapman, whose father Jim played college ball for Cal State Pomona, grew up in southern California as an Angels fan but joked, “It’s never too late to change your favorite team, right?” He claimed to be very familiar with the A’s from following the American League West. And as for his impression of the A’s, the team’s newest prospect said, “I know the A’s play old-school, hard-nosed baseball. And I feel that’s exactly how I go about my business.”

When it comes to the A’s top pitching pick in this year’s draft, Kubota called Gossett “a proven college performer.” And on what it was that most impressed the team about the right-hander, Kubota said, “He has a fastball that is 92-94. He throws strikes. He has the makings of an out-pitch breaking ball and a very good changeup. There is just a lot to like about him.”

 

mcMB13476e1st Round

Matt Chapman

Third Baseman

Cal State Fullerton

Age: 21 / 6’2” – 215 lbs.

Bats: Right / Throws: Right

2014 College Stats: 6 HR / 27 BB / 26 K / .312 AVG / .412 OBP / .498 SLG

 

Daniel Gossett2nd Round

Daniel Gossett

Right-Handed Pitcher

Clemson University

Age: 21 / 6’1” – 195 lbs.

Throws: Right / Bats: Right

2014 College Stats: 107 1/3 IP / 78 H / 23 ER / 30 BB / 107 K / 1.93 ERA

 

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

A’s 2012 Draft Picks Mid-Season Progress Report

arfPCk2bFI5Last week we offered a progress report on the A’s top 12 picks from the 2013 amateur draft. And it seemed like it might be interesting to take a similar look at the A’s top 12 picks from the 2012 amateur draft. Of course, that draft class featured some of the A’s most high-profile prospects like Addison Russell, Daniel Robertson and Matt Olson.

The A’s chose to be aggressive with shortstop Russell’s development this season and assigned him to Stockton, making the 19-year-old the youngest player in the High-A California League. Last year’s top pick for the A’s struggled over the first couple months of the season, but then he began to turn things around in June, and he ended up posting an impressive .344/.440/.609 slash line in July.

The A’s 7th overall pick last season, outfielder B.J. Boyd, started the year with Vermont of the Class-A short-season New York-Penn League, so he didn’t get going until June – but ever since he got going, there’s been no stopping him, and the outfielder’s currently sporting a .321/.406/.506 slash line after a month and a half of play.

The fastest-riser of last year’s draft class has been the A’s 8th overall pick, first baseman Max Muncy, who started the season with Russell at Stockton but made it all the way up to Double-A Midland just a little over a year after first being drafted by Oakland. And Muncy currently tops all A’s minor leaguers in home runs with 21 and RBIs with 83.

A couple of the top pitching picks from last year’s draft, right-handers Seth Streich and Dakota Bacus, have proven to be the two most reliable members of the Beloit Snappers starting rotation this season. Unfortunately, fellow right-hander Cody Kurz, last year’s 10th pick, has spent the season rehabbing from knee surgery and has yet to make an appearance on the mound.

You’ll find the A’s top 12 draft picks from the 2012 draft along with their current statistics through August 5 below. The teams they’ve played for so far this season are noted, with the team they’ve appeared in the most games with listed first and their current team in bold. So let’s take a look at the top picks of the A’s 2012 farm crop…

 

arDSC02744d#1 – 1st Round

Addison Russell

Age: 19 / Shortstop

Stockton

12 HR / 39 BB / 97 K / .271 AVG / .350 OBP / .507 SLG / .857 OPS

 

drdanielrobertson_mlb_display_image#2 – 1st Round

Daniel Robertson

Age: 19 / Shortstop

Beloit

4 HR / 32 BB / 64 K / .264 AVG / .342 OBP / .365 SLG / .707 OPS

 

mo15095_4110106706138_1463379083_n4#3 – 1st Round

Matt Olson

Age: 19 / First Baseman

Beloit

15 HR / 62 BB / 110 K / .223 AVG / .331 OBP / .407 SLG / .738 OPS

 

bmBruce Maxwell#4 – 2nd Round

Bruce Maxwell

Age: 22 / Catcher

Beloit + Stockton

4 HR / 36 BB / 52 K / .271 AVG / .347 OBP / .373 SLG / .720 OPS

 

nsresized_99261-5csanburn3colbw_47-15782_t728#5 – 2nd Round

Nolan Sanburn

Age: 22 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Beloit + AZL A’s

16 IP / 11 H / 4 ER / 8 BB / 14 K / 2.25 ERA / 1.19 WHIP

 

kt11CALUDG19#6 – 3rd Round

Kyle Twomey

Age: 19 / Left-Handed Pitcher

DID NOT SIGN

 

 

bb2011-10-14.boyd#7 – 4th Round

B.J. Boyd

Age: 20 / Outfielder

Vermont

5 HR / 20 BB / 37 K / .321 AVG / .406 OBP / .506 SLG / .912 OPS

 

mm165457_10151385210931662_1498946120_n5#8 – 5th Round

Max Muncy

Age: 22 / First Baseman

Stockton + Midland

21 HR / 73 BB / 85 K / .273 AVG / .381 OBP / .462 SLG / .843 OPS

 

ssStreich_480_copy_hjr49a6f_3nfc3gb7b#9 – 6th Round

Seth Streich

Age: 22 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Beloit

110 2/3 IP / 114 H / 47 ER / 41 BB / 82 K / 3.82 ERA / 1.40 WHIP

 

ck348641_t607#10 – 7th Round

Cody Kurz

Age: 20 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Disabled List

Has Not Played

 

khKris Hall#11 – 8th Round

Kris Hall

Age: 22 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Beloit

40 IP / 45 H / 26 ER / 25 BB / 39 K / 5.85 ERA / 1.75 WHIP

 

dbGDANVEKZHIQAYID.20120227195554#12 – 9th Round

Dakota Bacus

Age 22 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Beloit

103 2/3 IP / 113 H / 44 ER / 32 BB / 74 K / 3.82 ERA / 1.40 WHIP

 

 

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

A’s Top 12 Draft Picks Mid-Season Progress Report

Billy McKinney

A’s top pick Billy McKinney: His sweet swing seems heaven-sent.

It’s been almost two months since this year’s amateur draft and about six weeks since most of the players picked by the A’s began playing with either the rookie-ball Arizona League A’s or the Class-A Vermont Lake Monsters. Fortunately, the A’s managed to sign all of their top 12 draft picks from the first 10 rounds this year. And with about six weeks of play now in the books, it seems like a good time to take a look at how some the A’s newest prospects have been performing down on the farm.

So far, the A’s top pick, center fielder Billy McKinney, has been living up to his reputation as a sweet swinger. But the team’s second pick, LHP Dillon Overton, started off his career with the A’s by undergoing Tommy John surgery. The A’s 9th overall pick, RHP Dustin Driver, is the only other member of the top 12 who’s yet to see live game action. He has, however, been working out at the A’s minor league complex in Arizona while the team gives the high-school pitcher’s arm a bit of a break. Meanwhile, the A’s 7th overall pick, RHP Bobby Wahl, has already shown the ability to get lots of swings-and-misses, while the team’s 8th overall pick, RHP Kyle Finnegan, has demonstrated exceptional command and control.

The fastest-riser of this year’s draft class has been the A’s 6th overall pick, RHP Dylan Covey, who is the only member of this year’s crop to make it all the way up to the Beloit Snappers of the Class-A Midwest League. Covey earned the promotion after striking out 15 and not allowing an earned run in his first 12 innings at Vermont, though he has struggled a bit since joining Beloit.

You’ll find the A’s top 12 picks from the first 10 rounds of the 2013 draft along with their current statistics through July 31 below. The teams they’ve played for so far this season are noted, with the team they’ve appeared in the most games with listed first and their current team in bold. So without any further ado, let’s take a look at the top picks of the A’s 2013 farm crop…

 

bmc320x#1 – 1st Round

Billy McKinney

Age: 18 / Outfielder

AZL A’s

1 HR / 11 BB / 21 K / .330 AVG / .383 OBP / .417 SLG / .800 OPS

 

dospringstate10weatherford4-3c#2 – 2nd Round

Dillon Overton

Age: 21 / Left-Handed Pitcher

Tommy John Surgery

Has Not Played

 

cpf009965cf7c51910fc2a1bf2aca1138b5#3 – 2nd Round Supplemental

Chad Pinder

Age: 21 / Shortstop-Third Baseman

Vermont Lake Monsters

2 HR / 5 BB / 18 K / .167 AVG / .246 OBP / .267 SLG / .513 OPS

 

rhHealy2#4 – 3rd Round

Ryon Healy

Age: 21 / First Baseman

AZL A’s + Vermont Lake Monsters

2 HR / 3 BB / 8 K / .212 AVG / .246 OBP / .404 SLG / .649 OPS

 

ckChrisKohler12b#5 – 3rd Round Supplemental

Chris Kohler

Age: 18 / Left-Handed Pitcher

AZL A’s

10 2/3 IP / 8 H / 5 ER / 6 BB / 14 K / 4.22 ERA / 1.31 WHIP

 

dc7417296896_fbd45c83de_z2#6 – 4th Round

Dylan Covey

Age: 21 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Beloit Snappers + Vermont Lake Monsters

31 IP / 36 H / 12 ER / 8 BB / 23 K / 3.48 ERA / 1.42 WHIP

 

bwEP-130529103b#7 – 5th Round

Bobby Wahl

Age: 21 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters + AZL A’s

10 1/3 IP / 8 H / 3 ER / 4 BB / 15 K / 2.61 ERA / 1.16 WHIP

 

kffinnegan-for-blog#8 – 6th Round

Kyle Finnegan

Age: 21 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters

28 2/3 IP / 20 H / 4 ER / 5 BB / 19 K / 1.26 ERA / 0.87 WHIP

 

ddDustinDriver12b#9 – 7th Round

Dustin Driver

Age: 18 / Right-Handed Pitcher

At A’s Minor League Complex

Has Not Played

 

tm4L3#10 – 8th Round

Tyler Marincov

Age: 21 / Outfielder

Vermont Lake Monsters

2 HR / 15 BB / 28 K / .227 AVG / .324 OBP / .345 SLG / .668 OPS

 

msg24e7d00000000000005f8058cd094daf07be9009598f748f4dda0d4e20#11 – 9th Round

Matt Stalcup

Age: 23 / Left-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters

15 1/3 IP / 15 H / 8 ER / 9 BB / 11 K / 4.70 ERA / 1.57 WHIP

 

jg19K9UZ.AuSt.79b#12 – 10th Round

Jerad Grundy

Age: 22 / Left-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters

23 2/3 IP / 28 H / 18 ER / 13 BB / 14 K / 6.85 ERA / 1.73 WHIP

 

-TOP HITTER-

bmc320x#1 – 1st Round

Billy McKinney

Age: 18 / Outfielder

AZL A’s

1 HR / 11 BB / 21 K / .330 AVG / .383 OBP / .417 SLG / .800 OPS

 

-TOP PITCHER-

kffinnegan-for-blog#8 – 6th Round

Kyle Finnegan

Age: 21 / Right-Handed Pitcher

Vermont Lake Monsters

28 2/3 IP / 20 H / 4 ER / 5 BB / 19 K / 1.26 ERA / 0.87 WHIP

 

 

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