Monday, April 9th: Rivercats and Rockhounds Win as Grand Slams Continue

A’s Farmhand Of The Day

Shortstop Dusty Coleman Midland Rockhounds (Grand Slam)

 

 

TRIPLE-A PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE

Sacramento Rivercats  5

Tucson Padres             4

(WP – Souza 1-1 / 2.45)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

First Baseman Chris Carter

(2 Doubles / 3 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Diminutive Dominican Republican starter Fabio Castro walked 3 and allowed 2 runs over 4 innings in his first start for the Rivercats.

 

 

DOUBLE-A TEXAS LEAGUE

Midland Rockhounds  5

Springfield Cardinals  4

(WP – Daley 1-0 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Shortstop Dusty Coleman

(Grand Slam)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Gary Daley threw 6 shutout innings and picked up the win in his season debut for the Rockhounds.

 

 

ADVANCED-A CALIFORNIA LEAGUE

Stockton Ports       4

Bakersfield Blaze  10

(LP – Bowman 0-1 / 16.20)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

First Baseman A.J. Kirby-Jones

(3 for 4 / Double / RBI)

 

 

Worth Noting: Catcher Max Stassi and infielder Miles Head both hit their first home runs of the season for the Ports.

 

 

CLASS-A MIDWEST LEAGUE

Burlington Bees                  2

Wisconsin Timber Rattlers  6

(LP – Perlman 0-1 / 6.75)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Bobby Crocker

(3 for 4 / 1 Run)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Raul Alcantara, acquired in the Andrew Bailey deal with Boston, gave up 6 hits and 2 runs over 4 innings in his first start for the Bees.

 

 

Sunday, April 8: Cats and Ports Win in Ross and Hassebrock’s Debuts

A’s Farmhand Of The Day

First Baseman Daric Barton Sacramento Rivercats (Grand Slam)

 

 

TRIPLE-A PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE

Sacramento Rivercats  10

Las Vegas 51s               3

(WP – Hernandez 1-0 / 6.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

First Baseman Daric Barton

(Grand Slam)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Tyson Ross allowed just 1 run over 4 innings but walked 3.

 

 

DOUBLE-A TEXAS LEAGUE

Midland Rockhounds   5

Springfield Cardinals  13

(LP – Haviland 0-1 / 23.63)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Conner Crumbliss

(Home Run / Double / 2 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Shawn Haviland gave up 7 runs in just 2 2/3 innings.

 

 

ADVANCED-A CALIFORNIA LEAGUE

Stockton Ports          4

Lake Elsinore Storm  1

(WP – Hassebrock 1-0 / 1.42)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Pitcher Blake Hassebrock

(6 1/3 IP / 1 Run / 0 BB / Win)

 

 

Worth Noting: Outfielder Josh Whitaker had 2 hits, 2 runs, 1 RBI and 1 stolen base.

 

 

Saturday, April 7: 3 out of 4 Affiliates Win as Gray and Peacock Make Their Debuts

A’s Farmhand Of The Day

Outfielder Michael Taylor Sacramento Rivercats (Home Run / 4 RBIs)

 

 

TRIPLE-A PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE

Sacramento Rivercats  10

Las Vegas 51s              8

(WP – Peacock 1-0 / 3.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Michael Taylor

(Home Run / 4 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Catcher Derek Norris also homered, Daric Barton and Jermaine Mitchell had 3 hits apiece, and Brad Peacock allowed 2 earned runs over 6 innings in his first start for the Rivercats.

 

 

DOUBLE-A TEXAS LEAGUE

Midland Rockhounds  11

Arkansas Travelers     5

(WP – Hunter 1-0 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

First Baseman Michael Spina

(Double / 4 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Sonny Gray allowed 4 earned runs over 5 innings in his first start of the season for the Rockhounds.

 

 

ADVANCED-A CALIFORNIA LEAGUE

Stockton Ports          7

Lake Elsinore Storm  2

(WP – Walz 1-0 / 2.84)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Shortstop Michael Gilmartin

(Home Run / 2 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter T.J. Walz struck out 7 over 6 1/3 innings for his first win of the season.

 

 

CLASS-A MIDWEST LEAGUE

Burlington Bees         1

Clinton LumberKings  7

(LP – Macias 0-1 / 3.60)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Third Baseman B.A. Vollmuth

(1 for 3 / 1 RBI)

 

 

Worth Noting: Outfielder Dusty Robinson failed to homer for the first time this season.

 

 

Friday, April 6: Rivercats and Ports Lose as Parker and Cole Make Their Debuts

A’s Farmhand Of The Day

Two-Time Winner: Outfielder Dusty Robinson Burlington Bees (Home Run / Stolen Base / 3 Runs)

 

 

TRIPLE-A PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE

Sacramento Rivercats  3

Las Vegas51s              4

(LP – Souza 0-1 / 5.40)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Michael Taylor

(2 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Jarrod Parker allowed 3 runs over 6 innings in his first start for the Rivercats.

 

 

DOUBLE-A TEXAS LEAGUE

Midland Rockhounds  4

Arkansas Travelers    0

(WP – Billings 1-0 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Conner Crumbliss

(Home Run / 2 Runs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Daniel Straily struck out 7 in 4 2/3 shutout innings for the Rockhounds.

 

 

ADVANCED-A CALIFORNIA LEAGUE

Stockton Ports          1

Lake Elsinore Storm  5

(LP – Cole 0-1 / 5.40)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Shortstop Michael Gilmartin

(2 Doubles / 1 Run)

 

 

Worth Noting: A.J. Cole allowed 3 earned runs over 5 innings in his first start for the Ports.

 

 

CLASS-A MIDWEST LEAGUE

Burlington Bees         6

Clinton LumberKings  4

(WP – Powers 1-0 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Dusty Robinson

(Home Run / Stolen Base / 3 Runs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Reliever Brent Powers struck out 4 over 3 shutout innings.

 

 

3 out of 4 A’s Affiliates Win on Opening Night!

A’s Farmhand Of The Day

Outfielder Dusty Robinson Burlington Bees (Opening Night Grand Slam)

 

 

TRIPLE-A PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE

Sacramento Rivercats  11

Las Vegas 51s              6

(WP – Wagner 1-0 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Catcher Derek Norris

(Home Run / Double / 3 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Grant Green and Brandon Moss also homered, and Michael Taylor and Chris Carter had 3 hits apiece.

 

 

DOUBLE-A TEXAS LEAGUE

Midland Rockhounds  0

Arkansas Travelers    1

(LP – Huttenlocker 0-1 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Pitcher A.J. Griffin

(5 innings / 0 Runs / 8 Strikeouts)

 

Worth Noting: 2007 first-round draft pick James Simmons, rebounding from injuries, pitched 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief.

 

 

ADVANCED-A CALIFORNIA LEAGUE

Stockton Ports          7

Lake Elsinore Storm  2

(WP – Treinen 1-0 / 2.84)

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Josh Whitaker

(Home Run / Double / 2 Runs / 1 RBI)

 

Worth Noting: Former first baseman Sean Doolittle, trying to convert to a pitcher after injuries, struck out 4 of the 5 batters he faced in 1 2/3 innings of relief.

 

 

CLASS-A MIDWEST LEAGUE

Burlington Bees         8

Clinton LumberKings  2

(WP – Kilcrease 1-0 / 2.25)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Dusty Robinson

(Grand Slam)

 

 

Worth Noting: Taiwanese import Chih Fang Pan had 2 hits, including a double, on opening day for Burlington.

 

 

Opening Night For A’s Affiliates

Thursday is opening night for the Sacramento Rivercats, along with the rest of the A’s minor league affiliates. And A’s Farm will be providing updates on all the games as well as the top prospects throughout the season. So be sure to check back daily to follow the progress of all the future A’s down on the farm!

Thursday, April 5 at 7:05pm PDT

Sacramento Rivercats @ Las Vagas 51s

Travis Banwart vs. Aaron Laffey

Aaron Laffey: 2011 w/Mariners & Yankees: 3-2 3.88

Travis Banwart 2011 w/Rivercats: 9-9 4.63

A’s Farm 15th Ranked MLBlog in March!

Just like Josh Reddick, A's Farm's a major league contender!

 

Thanks to everyone who’s stopped by for helping make A’s Farm the #15th ranked MLBlog in March! It’s clear that A’s fans are not just committed to supporting the team at the major league level but also to understanding the organization at every level.

Be sure to like the A’s Farm Facebook Page and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm to keep up on everything this season. And remember to check in with A’s Farm right here for daily updates on all the A’s minor league games and top prospects as the season unfolds!

 

Preview: Parker, Peacock and Ross Lead Rivercats Rotation in 2012

Raley Field in Sacramento

The opening day roster for the A’s Triple-A affiliate in the Pacific Coast League, the Sacramento Rivercats, hadn’t been officially announced as of Wednesday night. But with a few exceptions, it’s pretty clear how the Rivercats’ roster will shape up.

The Rivercats are likely to start the season with 13 pitchers, including top prospects Jarrod Parker and Brad Peacock, as well as right-hander Tyson Ross until he’s needed as the A’s fifth starter in mid-April. The offense will include five outfielders led by promising sluggers Jermaine Mitchell and Grant Green, five infielders anchored by first baseman Chris Carter and third baseman Stephen Parker, and a catching corps led by top catching prospect Derek Norris.

The Rivercats’ regular lineup is likely to include Norris behind the plate – backed up by veteran minor leaguer Joel GalarragaCarter, Wes Timmons, Adam Rosales and Parker around the horn in the infield – with minor league pickup Brandon Hicks backing them up – and Green, Mitchell, Michael Taylor and minor league veterans Brandon Moss and Jeff Fiorentino rotating in the outfield and in the designated hitter spot.

The Rivercats’ rotation will be made up of Ross, Parker and Peacock along with returning Rivercats Travis Banwart and Carlos Hernandez. Meanwhile, the bullpen will primarily be comprised of minor league veterans, all of whom will be at least 26 years old at the start of the season, and most of whom were signed as minor league free agents in the off-season.

You’ll find the Sacramento Rivercats’ likely roster, along with profiles of some of the team’s top players, below. And be sure to check back with A’s Farm throughout the season for daily updates on all the A’s minor league games and top prospects!

 

Jarrod Parker

JARROD PARKER

Right-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 23

Drafted 2007 – 1st Round

Probably the most talented of all the A’s young pitching acquisitions this off-season, Parker was a first-round draft pick in 2007 who underwent Tommy John surgery in 2009 and ended up missing all of the 2010 season. He returned to Double-A Mobile in 2011 and turned in a 3.79 ERA in 26 starts, striking out 112 in 130 2/3 innings. After earning a late-season call-up with the Diamondbacks, he gave up no runs in his only major league start. Parker should eventually end up as a top-of-the-rotation pitcher for the A’s, but he could benefit from a little more seasoning at Sacramento this year.

 

Brad Peacock

BRAD PEACOCK

Right-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 24

Drafted 2006 – 41st Round

Of all the young hurlers the A’s acquired this off-season who pitched above Single-A last year, Peacock had the lowest ERA and the best strikeout rate of them all, turning in a stellar 2.39 ERA and striking out 177 in 146 2/3 innings between Triple-A Syracuse and Double-A Harrisburg last year. He earned a late-season call-up with the Nationals and gave up only 1 run in 12 innings of major league action. The Florida native seems to be a smart pitcher who’s figured out what it takes to win, and it’d be surprising if he didn’t get a chance to be pitching in the majors before the season’s through.

 

Derek Norris

DEREK NORRIS

Right-handed Hitting Catcher

Age On Opening Day: 23

Drafted 2007 – 4th Round

The only hitter the A’s acquired in the Gio Gonzalez deal with the Nationals, Norris certainly fits the A’s mold in that he’s a power hitter who has a propensity for drawing walks. His career minor league OBP of .403 no doubt got the A’s attention. But while he slugged 20 home runs at Double-A Harrisburg last season, he managed to hit only .210. If he can just keep his average above the Mendoza line, Norris could serve to bridge the gap between Kurt Suzuki and young catching prospect Max Stassi.

 

Chris Carter

CHRIS CARTER

Right-handed Hitting First Baseman

Age On Opening Day: 25

Drafted 2005 – 15th Round

Acquired in the Dan Haren deal with the Diamondbacks, it was originally hoped that the slugging first baseman would be anchoring the heart of the A’s lineup by now. He’s put up big power numbers in the minors, clubbing 31 home runs at Triple-A Sacramento in 2010 and posting a career minor league slugging percentage of .540. But Carter will have to take the opportunity to open some eyes and really show the A’s what he can do at Sacramento in 2012.

 

Michael Taylor

MICHAEL TAYLOR

Right-handed Hitting Outfielder

Age On Opening Day: 26

Drafted 2007 – 5th Round

Along with Carter, Taylor had lots of expectations thrust upon him as soon as the A’s managed to pry him away from Philadelphia. And while the 6’5” outfielder put up stellar numbers in the Phillies system, his progress has stagnated a bit since coming to the A’s. But Taylor does still have a .296/.371/.476 career minor league slash line along with some good tools. At 26 though, 2012 may be his last real opportunity to show the A’s just what’s he’s capable of.

 

Grant Green

GRANT GREEN

Right-handed Hitting Outfielder

Age On Opening Day: 24

Drafted 2009 – 1st Round

Green was originally selected by the A’s in the first round of the 2009 draft as a shortstop but has since been moved to the outfield. Midway through the 2011 season, Green took over in center field for Double-A Midland, where he turned in a .291/.343/.408 slash line. But his home run numbers dipped from 20 at Class-A Stockton in the 2010 season down to just 9 last year. His plate discipline has been an issue too, as he’s struck out three times as often as he’s walked in his minor league career. Still, he hits the ball hard and Green could earn a shot in the A’s outfield before long.

 

Jermaine Mitchell

JERMAINE MITCHELL

Left-handed Hitting Outfielder

Age On Opening Day: 27

Drafted 2006 – 5th Round

A six-year minor league veteran, Mitchell finally put it all together in 2011. The outfielder hit .332 with 29 doubles, 16 triples, 15 homers, and 27 stolen bases in 536 at bats between Double-A Midland and Triple-A Sacramento last season. He also posted an impressive .430 on-base percentage to go along with a .530 slugging percentage. The A’s brass thinks this talented player may have finally figured it all out and will be looking to his performance this year at Sacramento to determine whether or not he’s truly got what it takes.

 

-SACRAMENTO RIVERCATS LIKELY 2012 ROSTER-

 

STARTING PITCHERS

Tyson Ross

Jarrod Parker

Brad Peacock

Travis Banwart

Carlos Hernandez

 

LEFT-HANDED RELIEVERS

Fabio Castro

Pedro Figueroa

Erick Threets

 

RIGHT-HANDED RELIEVERS

Jim Miller

Justin Souza

Merkin Valdez

Neil Wagner

Evan Scribner or Travis Schlichting

 

CATCHERS

Derek Norris

Joel Galarraga

 

INFIELDERS

Chris Carter

Wes Timmons

Adam Rosales

Stephen Parker

Brandon Hicks

 

OUTFIELDERS

Michael Taylor

Grant Green

Jermaine Mitchell

Brandon Moss

Jeff Fiorentino

 

 

Be sure to check back with A’s Farm throughout the season for daily updates on all the A’s minor league games and top prospects

 

Preview: Top Prospects Sonny Gray and Michael Choice the Main Attractions at Midland in 2012

Citibank Ballpark in Midland

The opening day roster for the A’s Double-A affiliate in the Texas League, the Midland Rockhounds, was announced on Tuesday. And two of the A’s most recent first-round draft picks, right-handed pitcher Sonny Gray and slugging outfielder Michael Choice, will be the main attractions at Midland this season. Choice was the A’s first-round pick in 2010, and Gray was the team’s first-round pick last year.

The dynamic duo will be joined by the A’s 2007 first-round pick, right-handed pitcher James Simmons, who is attempting to fight his way back from injuries that caused him to miss all of the 2010 season and part of 2011. 2007’s second-round pick, infielder Josh Horton, will also be attempting to bounce back from injuries that limited him to just 27 games last year.

Other notable players on the Rockhounds roster this season include the Cardinals’ second-round pick from 2008, first baseman/outfielder Shane Peterson, and the A’s organization’s most frequent tweeter, outfielder Jeremy Barfield (@baseclogger), who drove in 72 runs for the Rockhounds last season.

But most Midland fans will be hoping that top prospects Choice and Gray can take the Rockhounds far this season before they get the chance to make their mark in Oakland. You’ll find the Midland Rockhounds’ complete roster, along with profiles of first-round draft picks Choice and Gray, below.

 

Michael Choice

MICHAEL CHOICE

Right-handed Hitting Outfielder

Age On Opening Day: 22

Drafted 2010 – 1st Round

The A’s first-round draft pick in 2010, Choice has done little to disappoint since his signing. The 22-year-old hit 30 homers and posted a .285/.376/.542 slash line while playing center field for Class-A Stockton last year. His 134 strikeouts provide the only potential cause for concern. But he’s worked to shorten his swing and, as the best pure power hitter in the organization, the slugging outfielder should be able to quickly move up through an A’s system that’s not currently clogged with power-hitting outfielders.

 

Sonny Gray

SONNY GRAY

Right-handed Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 22

Drafted 2011 – 1st Round

The A’s first-round draft pick in 2011, Gray has already managed to log 5 starts at Double-A Midland, giving up just 1 run in 20 innings while striking out 18. The 5’11” right-hander has been compared to Tim Hudson in that while he’s not all that physically impressive, his confident, gritty and fearless attitude sets him apart from the competition. With a good fastball and curve, it shouldn’t take long for the tough 22-year-old to fight his way into the A’s starting rotation.

 

-MIDLAND ROCKHOUNDS 2012 ROSTER-

 

PITCHERS

Trey Barham

Bruce Billings

Gary Daley

Sonny Gray

A.J. Griffin

Shawn Haviland

Brett Hunter

A.J. Huttenlocker

Jonathan Ortiz

James Simmons

Murphy Smith

Paul Smyth

Daniel Straily

 

CATCHERS

Ryan Lipkin

Ryan Ortiz

 

INFIELDERS

Anthony Aliotti

Dusty Coleman

Leonardo Gil

Josh Horton

Tyler Ladendorf

Shane Peterson

Michael Spina

 

OUTFIELDERS

Jeremy Barfield

Michael Choice

Conner Crumbliss

 

 

 

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

 

Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton

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

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

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

 

A.J. Cole

A.J. COLE

Right-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 20

Drafted 2010 – 4th Round

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

 

Ian Krol

IAN KROL

Left-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 20

Drafted 2009 – 7th Round

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

 

Blake Hassebrock

BLAKE HASSEBROCK

Right-handed Starting Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 22

Drafted 2010 – 8th Round

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

 

Sean Doolittle

SEAN DOOLITTLE

Left-handed Pitcher

Age On Opening Day: 25

Drafted 2007 – 1st Round

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

 

Miles Head

MILES HEAD

Right-handed Hitting Third Baseman

Age On Opening Day: 20

Drafted 2009 – 26th Round

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

 

Max Stassi

MAX STASSI

Right-handed Hitting Catcher

Age On Opening Day: 21

Drafted 2009 – 4th Round

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

 

-STOCKTON PORTS 2012 ROSTER-

 

PITCHERS

Josh Bowman

Jacob Brown

A.J. Cole

Sean Doolittle

Jose Guzman

Blake Hassebrock

Connor Hoehn

Ian Krol

ArnoldLeon

Nate Long

Zack Thornton

Blake Treinen

T.J. Walz

 

CATCHERS

Petey Paramore

Max Stassi

 

INFIELDERS

Michael Gilmartin

Miles Head

A.J. Kirby-Jones

Nino Leyja

Ryan Pineda

Tony Thompson

 

OUTFIELDERS

Rashun Dixon

Eliezer Mesa

Myrio Richard

Josh Whitaker

 

 

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