Tag: Beau Taylor

Wednesday, July 5th: Mondou Helps Ports Prevail while Lazaro Hits 1st HR & Sounds Drop a Doubleheader

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Stockton Ports Second Baseman Nate Mondou (3 for 3 / 3 RBIs / Walk / Sac Fly / Stolen Base)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Stockton Ports Second Baseman Nate Mondou (3 for 3 / 3 RBIs / Walk / Sac Fly / Stolen Base)

 

CALIFORNIA LEAGUE  (High-A)

Stockton Ports         6

Inland Empire 66ers  3

WP – Tomasovich 3-3 / 3.26

Prospect Of The Game:

Second Baseman Nate Mondou

(3 for 3 / 3 RBIs / Walk / Sac Fly / Stolen Base)

Second baseman Nate Mondou had a productive night at the plate to help the Ports prevail on Wednesday. Last year’s 13th-round draft pick for the A’s collected 3 singles, walked, stole a base and drove in 3 runs. He notched his first RBI of the night with a sacrifice fly in the 3rd inning to tie the game, singled in what would prove to be the winning run in the 5th, then singled in another run in the 6th. And the 22-year-old is now batting .343 since being promoted to the Ports from Beloit last week. Left fielder Brett Siddall continued his hot hitting of late, singling and doubling twice, and he’s now 13 for 23 over his last 6 games for Stockton. Starter Kyle Friedrichs allowed 2 runs over 4 1/3 frames, while LHP Andrew Tomasovich gave up 1 run in 2 innings of relief to record the win, and LHP Jared Lyons tossed 2 2/3 scoreless innings to secure his 1st save for Stockton. Meanwhile, Ports pitchers held the rehabbing Mike Trout hitless in 3 at-bats. And in other news, Stockton starter Logan Shore began a rehab assignment with the AZL A’s on Wednesday.

Click here for more on Nashville, Midland, Beloit, Vermont & AZL A’s…

A’s Farm Report: Meisner, Murphy, Munoz & More Top A’s Prospects on the Move

by Bill Moriarity / A’s Farm Editor

A number of top-performing A’s prospects have received promotions over the past month. Among those on the move have been RHP Casey Meisner, catcher Sean Murphy, infielder Yairo Munoz, LHP A.J. Puk and 23-year-old Cuban defector Norge Ruiz, along with many others. Of course, some have been demoted too. But let’s run down some of these recent moves and take a look at how these promoted and demoted players have been performing so far this season…

 

IF Yairo Munoz, C Beau Taylor and RHPs Lou Trivino and Kyle Finnegan to Nashville from Midland

Yairo Munoz

Yairo Munoz

Due to some nagging injuries, Munoz’s season didn’t get started until the first week of May, and then it took a couple more weeks before his bat began heating up. But after compiling a .532 slugging percentage over his first 47 games for Midland, the 22-year-old was promoted to Nashville towards the end of June, where he’s put up a .212/.250/.242 slash line in his first 8 games for the Sounds. Munoz has mainly split time between shortstop and third base this season, but he’s recently started 3 games in center field. Taylor was suspended for the first 50 games of the season after testing positive for amphetamines and didn’t get his season started until the final day of May. The 27-year-old got off to a hot start though and put up a .309/.385/.485 slash line over his first 21 games for the RockHounds. So, after spending parts of six seasons with Midland, Taylor finally got the chance to make his Triple-A debut at the end of June, and he’s gone 6 for 18 with 3 walks and a pair of doubles over his first 5 games for Nashville. Trivino and Finnegan were two of Midland’s top relievers this season. Trivino posted a 2.43 ERA while failing to give up a home run and striking out 34 in 33 1/3 frames. Finnegan struck out 27 and walked just 7 over 30 innings while recording 8 saves for the RockHounds. But since arriving in Nashville late last month, Trivino has allowed 4 runs over his first 3 games, and Finnegan has put up a 7.71 ERA in his first 2 appearances for the Sounds.

 

RHPs Tyler Sturdevant and Aaron Kurcz to Midland from Nashville

After making his major league debut for Tampa Bay last season, it’s been a rough year for Sturdevant, who signed with the A’s as a minor league free agent in the offseason. He started the year on the disabled list, then was inconsistent, putting up a 4.39 ERA and a 1.80 WHIP for the Sounds before being reassigned to the RockHounds in mid-June, where he’s allowed 3 runs in his first 5 frames at Double-A. Kurcz got off to an even rougher start this season, posting a 7.24 ERA in 22 relief appearances for Nashville before being moved down to Midland last week, where he’s looked much better, allowing just 1 hit over 3 2/3 scoreless frames for the Hounds.

 

LHP A.J. Puk, RHPs Casey Meisner and Dustin Hurlbutt, C Sean Murphy, IF Branden Cogswell and OF Tyler Ramirez to Midland from Stockton

A.J. Puk

A.J. Puk

Much of Stockton’s starting rotation has been reassigned to the RockHounds. Brett Graves was the first to make the move to Midland in early May, followed by Evan Manarino in late May, and Puk, Meisner and Hurlbutt all made the move in June. Puk struck out 98 in 61 innings for Stockton, while Meisner struck out 80 in 74 2/3 frames, and Hurlbutt posted a solid 3.23 ERA and a 0.98 WHIP for the Ports. Puk’s been a little inconsistent since arriving in Midland, allowing 3 runs over 7 innings in his first start, giving up 2 runs over 6 frames in his last start, and surrendering 4 runs on 3 hits and 3 walks in just 1/3 of an inning of work in his other start. Overall, the 22-year-old has walked 9 and struck out 12 in his first 13 1/3 frames for Midland. Meisner and Hurlbutt both gave up 4 runs in 4 1/3 innings of work in their Double-A debuts last week. Catcher Sean Murphy, infielder Branden Cogswell and outfielder Tyler Ramirez all made the move the Midland last week as well. Ramirez was boasting Stockton’s best on-base percentage (.399), and Murphy was sporting the team’s top slugging percentage (.527), while Cogswell seemed to earn his promotion primarily based on service time. He was drafted by the A’s in the 7th round back in 2014 and started his stint with Stockton in 2015. Since arriving in Midland, Murphy has gone 7 for 17 with a double, while Cogswell has gone 2 for 15, and Ramirez went 1 for 2 with a walk in his Double-A debut on Sunday.

 

RHP Kyle Friedrichs, LHP Evan Manarino and C Argenis Raga to Stockton from Midland

After impressing at Stockton last year, Friedrichs was given a shot at starting the season at Double-A this year. But the 25-year-old put up an ERA of 6.00 at Midland before being sent back to Stockton last week, where he gave up 5 runs over 5 frames in his first appearance for the Ports. Manarino started the season in Stockton and was solid, striking out 46 while walking just 5 over 51 2/3 innings for the Ports, but he struggled badly after moving up to Midland. The 24-year-old allowed 24 earned runs in 26 2/3 innings over his first 5 starts for the RockHounds before being reassigned to Stockton last week, where he surrendered 6 runs in his first return appearance for the Ports. And with Sean Murphy’s promotion to Midland, Argenis Raga was sent back to Stockton. After serving as the Ports’ primary starting catcher last season, Raga was given the chance to start the year with the RockHounds. But after the 22-year-old put up a feeble .200/.257/.316 slash line for Midland, he was sent back to Stockton last week to make way for Murphy.

 

LHP Dalton Sawyer, RHPs Brendan Butler and Brandon Bailey, 2B Nate Mondou to Stockton from Beloit

Brandon Bailey

Brandon Bailey

Butler and Sawyer were Beloit’s two best starting pitchers over the first couple of months of the season, with Butler compiling a 2.32 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP and Sawyer putting up a 2.25 ERA and a 0.98 WHIP before being promoted to the Ports prior to the California League and Midwest League All-Star breaks last month. And both have continued to perform well for the Ports, with Butler striking out 32 over his first 24 1/3 frames and posting a 3.33 ERA, while Sawyer has struck out 22 in 16 2/3 innings and put up a 2.16 ERA for Stockton. After the departures of Sawyer and Butler, Bailey was the best bet in Beloit’s starting rotation. Last year’s 6th-round draft pick for the A’s struck out 73 in 57 frames while compiling a 2.68 ERA before being promoted to the Ports this weekend, where he allowed 4 runs in 4 1/3 innings in his first appearance for Stockton on Sunday. Meanwhile, Mondou was one of Beloit’s best hitters this season, boasting a .371 on-base percentage before being promoted to the Ports last week, where he’s gone 8 for 24 with 3 extra-base hits over his first 6 games for Stockton.

 

RHP Norge Ruiz to Stockton from the Dominican League

After allowing just 1 run in 19 innings of work over 4 starts in the Dominican League, Ruiz was promoted to the Ports last week, where the 23-year-old Cuban defector gave up 4 runs over 4 innings in his first start for Stockton on Saturday.

*          *          *

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 29th: Farrar Has 2nd 4-Hit Game for AZL A’s while Hounds Win in a Walk-Off

A’s Prospect Of The Day: AZL A's Outfielder Logan Farrar (4 for 4 / 2 Doubles / Walk / RBI)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: AZL A’s Outfielder Logan Farrar (4 for 4 / 2 Doubles / Walk / RBI)

 

ARIZONA LEAGUE  (Rookie Short-Season)

AZL Mariners  13

AZL A’s            6

LP – Krall 1-1 / 2.25

Prospect Of The Game:

Outfielder Logan Farrar

(4 for 4 / 2 Doubles / Walk / RBI)

This year’s 36th-round draft pick for the A’s out of Virginia Commonwealth, right fielder Logan Farrar, went for 4 for 4 for the second straight night. Two of those hits were doubles on Thursday, and he also drew a walk in his final plate appearance of the game. Over the last two nights, Farrar has gone 8 for 8 with 3 doubles and a home run for the A’s. 18-year-old Cuban outfielder Lazaro Armenteros, who served as the designated hitter for the night, had 3 hits and a walk and swiped a pair of bases, and he’s now gone 6 for 10 in his first 3 games for the AZL A’s. Starter Chris Kohler gave up 3 runs, 2 earned, in 2 innings of work, while 28th-round LHP Pat Krall gave up 2 runs, 1 earned, over 2 frames to suffer the loss. 21-year-old Panamanian LHP Jorge Martinez surrendered 5 runs, 4 earned, in just 1 1/3 innings of relief, while 30th-round LHP Cody Puckett tossed 1 2/3 scoreless innings. 22-year-old RHP Zack Kelly gave up 3 runs, 2 earned, in just 1 inning of work, and 23-year-old LHP Brandon Marsonek pitched 1 scoreless frame in the loss. Kelly and Marsonek both went undrafted but were signed by the A’s after the draft.

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

Wednesday, June 28th: Milburn’s Stellar Start & Shelby’s 2 HRs Lead Snappers to Shutout Win while Sawyer Pitches Ports to Victory & Bassitt Returns

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Beloit Snappers Pitcher Matt Milburn (6 IP / 1 H / 0 ER / 1 BB / 8 K / Win)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Beloit Snappers Pitcher Matt Milburn (6 IP / 1 H / 0 ER / 1 BB / 8 K / Win)

 

MIDWEST LEAGUE  (Class-A)

Beloit Snappers  3

Peoria Chiefs        0

WP – Milburn 4-5 / 4.71

HR – Shelby 2 (7)

Prospect Of The Game:

Pitcher Matt Milburn

(6 IP / 1 H / 0 ER / 1 BB / 8 K / Win)

The Snappers shut out Peoria on 3 hits to win for the fifth time in their last six games on Wednesday. Starter Matt Milburn was impressive, allowing just 1 hit and striking out 8 over 6 shutout innings to earn his 4th win, and the 23-year-old has now given up just 1 run while striking out 20 in 13 innings over his last two starts for Beloit. RHP Heath Bowers threw 3 scoreless frames in relief to complete the 3-hit shutout and post his 2nd save for the Snappers. After going 11 for 68 with 38 strikeouts over his last 20 games, right fielder JaVon Shelby busted out of his recent slump in a big way on Wednesday by belting a pair of home runs for Beloit. First baseman Luke Persico singled twice and drove in a run, while center fielder Mike Martin had a pair of hits and scored a run in his return to the Snappers after spending five games with Vermont. Meanwhile, Beloit RHP Mitchell Jordan was placed on the disabled list and 23-year-old Cuban RHP Miguel Romero was added to the Snappers roster on Wednesday.

Click here for more on Nashville, Stockton, Vermont & AZL A’s…

Monday, June 26th: Blackburn Pitches Sounds to Victory while Top Draft Picks Debut for Vermont & Norge Ruiz Makes 1st Start for AZL A’s

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

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds RHP Paul Blackburn (5 1/3 IP / 5 H / 2 ER / 1 BB / 2 K / Win)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE  (Triple-A)

Round Rock Express  3

Nashville Sounds      5

WP – Blackburn 5-6 / 3.05

HR – Nunez (20), McBride (6)

Prospect Of The Game:

Pitcher Paul Blackburn

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

The Sounds notched their first win since last Tuesday on Monday night in Nashville. RHP Paul Blackburn turned in another solid start for the Sounds, allowing 2 runs over 5 1/3 frames to earn his 5th win, and the 23-year-old now has an ERA of 1.73 over 5 starts during the month of June. RHP Simon Castro tossed 2 scoreless innings in relief, and RHP Jake Sanchez got the final three outs in the 9th to notch his 3rd save for Nashville. Third baseman Renato Nunez hit his league-leading 20th home run, a 2-run shot in the 1st inning to give the Sounds an early lead, while catcher Matt McBride belted a 3-run blast in the bottom of the 4th, and right fielder Mark Canha and designated hitter Ryan Lavarnway had a pair of hits apiece in the win. Meanwhile, catcher Beau Taylor and RHP Kyle Finnegan were reassigned to Nashville from Midland on Monday, while RHP Ben Bracewell was returned to the RockHounds.

Click here for more on Stockton, Beloit, Vermont & AZL A’s…

Sunday, June 18th: Taylor’s HR Helps Hounds Win while Ports & Snappers Come Up Short

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Midland RockHounds Catcher Beau Taylor (2 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Midland RockHounds Catcher Beau Taylor (2 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs)

 

TEXAS LEAGUE  (Double-A)

Midland RockHounds  2

Frisco RoughRiders       1

WP – Trivino 7-1 / 2.43

HR – Taylor (2)

Prospect Of The Game:

Catcher Beau Taylor

(2 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs)

Catcher Beau Taylor drove in both RockHounds runs to help Midland win the first game of their road trip in Frisco on Father’s Day. The 27-year-old backstop singled in the 6th inning to bring home the RockHounds’ first run, then slugged his 2nd home run of the season with the game tied in the top of the 9th to provide the margin of victory for Midland. Designated hitter B.J. Boyd doubled and walked, while second baseman Max Schrock went 0 for 4 in his return from the disabled list on Sunday. Starter Heath Fillmyer allowed 1 run over 5 2/3 frames, while RHP Lou Trivino tossed 2 1/3 scoreless innings in relief to earn his 7th win, and RHP Carlos Navas got the final three outs to register his 2nd save for the RockHounds. In other news, RHP Tyler Sturdevant was reassigned from the Sounds to the RockHounds on Sunday. And top pitching prospect A.J. Puk is set to make his first start for Midland on Monday.

Click here for more on Nashville, Stockton & Beloit…

Sunday, June 4th: Blackburn Leads Sounds to Shutout Victory while Murphy’s 2 HRs Help Stockton Win & Armenteros Makes Pro Debut

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Pitcher Paul Blackburn (7 IP / 2 H / 0 ER / 1 BB / 4 K / Win)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Nashville Sounds Pitcher Paul Blackburn (7 IP / 2 H / 0 ER / 1 BB / 4 K / Win)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE  (Triple-A)

Nashville Sounds  6

Iowa Cubs               0

WP – Blackburn 4-5 / 3.26

HR – Chapman (13), McBride (2)

Prospect Of The Game:

Pitcher Paul Blackburn

(7 IP / 2 H / 0 ER / 1 BB / 4 K / Win)

RHP Paul Blackburn turned in an impressive start for the Sounds on Sunday, allowing just 2 hits over 7 shutout innings to notch his 4th win for Nashville. And the former 1st-round supplemental pick for the Cubs now has an ERA of 1.44 over his last 4 starts for the Sounds. RHPs Tyler Sturdevant and Tucker Healy each contributed a scoreless inning in relief to complete the 4-hit shutout on Sunday. Third baseman Matt Chapman homered for the second straight day and doubled in the Sounds’ first run, while designated hitter Matt McBride also homered, doubled and drove in a pair, and catcher Ryan Lavarnway singled, doubled, walked and drove in a run to help the Sounds win for the fifth time in their last six games. Meanwhile, first baseman Matt Olson was recalled by the A’s, and RHP Daniel Mengden was optioned back to Nashville on Sunday.

Click here for more on Midland, Stockton, Beloit & the Dominican Summer League A’s…

Wednesday, May 31st: Sportman’s Big Bat Helps Hounds Win while Hahn Makes Rehab Start for Stockton

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Midland RockHounds Second Baseman J.P. Sportman (3 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs)

A’s Prospect Of The Day: Midland RockHounds Second Baseman J.P. Sportman (3 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs)

 

TEXAS LEAGUE  (Double-A)

Arkansas Travelers        5

Midland RockHounds  7

WP – Manarino 1-0 / 3.00

HR – Sportman (6), Munoz (3)

Prospect Of The Game:

Second Baseman J.P. Sportman

(3 for 4 / Home Run / 2 RBIs)

The RockHounds scored 7 runs on 16 hits to snap their four-game losing streak on Wednesday. J.P. Sportman, playing second base with Max Schrock on the disabled list, led the attack, collecting 3 hits, including his 6th home run, and driving in a pair of runs for Midland. Shortstop Yairo Munoz smacked his 3rd home run, and a number of players making their season debuts for the Hounds made key contributions as well. Catcher Beau Taylor, returning from a 50-game suspension, had 3 hits, including a triple, and drove in a run, while center fielder Kenny Wilson, who spent most of the season with the Sounds, singled, tripled and scored, and third baseman Jermaine Curtis, a minor league free agent signee who was sidelined with a hamstring injury in the spring, had a pair of doubles and drove in a run for Midland. The trio replaced three RockHounds who landed on the disabled list on Wednesday. Shortstop Richie Martin, who was hit in the head with a fastball in Tuesday’s game, is headed to Arizona for treatment after suffering a broken nose in the incident according to Hounds’ play-by-play man Bob Hards, while second baseman Max Schrock has been dealing with leg and foot injuries that caused him to miss four games last week, and RHP James Naile hasn’t pitched in over two weeks due to an abdominal strain. Meanwhile, back on the field, LHP Evan Manarino made his Double-A debut for Midland on Wednesday and allowed 2 runs on 9 hits over 6 innings of work to earn the win, while RHP Kyle Finnegan tossed 1 2/3 scoreless innings in relief to post his 7th save for the RockHounds.

Click here for more on Stockton & Beloit…

Meet Your 2017 Nashville Sounds

0nsIMG_2587We recently took a look at the likely A’s opening day roster for 2017, which appears to be reasonably well set, with the exception of a couple of minor question marks. This year’s Triple-A Nashville Sounds roster is a far more complicated puzzle to try to piece together at this point though. The main reason for this is that the A’s have invited a whopping 70 players to their major league spring training camp this year, and all but a handful of them already have major league or Triple-A experience and are expected to battle for 50 roster spots with Oakland and Nashville.

Some players, like LHP Felix Doubront and RHPs Chris Bassitt and Daniel Mengden, are likely to open the season on the disabled list. But if most of the others remain healthy, then that will leave plenty of players on the outside looking in. And with the A’s major league roster seeming to be fairly well set at this point, most of that roster crunch will be occurring at Nashville, and we may be looking at a fairly significant roster purge towards the end of spring training before rosters can be finalized.

While recent draftees, like LHP A.J. Puk and catcher Sean Murphy, certainly won’t be in contention to open the season anywhere near as high as Triple-A, and others players, like infielders Yairo Munoz and Max Schrock, appear set to start the season with Double-A Midland, there are certain players who will be guaranteed plenty of regular playing time at Nashville this season no matter what happens – top prospects like Matt Chapman, Franklin Barreto and Matt Olson, as well as others.

The A’s usually like to start the season with 13 pitchers and 12 position players at the Triple-A level. And while some recent trades and injuries have helped to relieve the pitching logjam at Nashville a bit, there currently appear to be about 18 position players jockeying for 12 Triple-A roster spots at this point, so something’s definitely going to have to give there. So, with all that in mind, let’s take a look at how things are shaping up for your 2017 Nashville Sounds…

 

CATCHERS

Bruce Maxwell

Bruce Maxwell

The catching corps appears to be one of the clearer areas when it comes to the Nashville roster. If Stephen Vogt and Josh Phegley are both healthy to start the season, then it looks looks likely that Bruce Maxwell will start the year back at Nashville, getting most of the starts behind the plate for the Sounds. Matt McBride, who shared time with Maxwell at Nashville last season, appears set to do the same again this year. The A’s signed catcher Ryan Lavarnway as a minor league free agent in the offseason. But just as there doesn’t appear to be room for three catchers on Oakland’s roster, there doesn’t seem to be room for three catchers on Nashville’s roster either. And since Lavarnway spent most of last season at Double-A and Midland catcher Beau Taylor is set to spend the first 50 games of the season on the suspended list, Lavarnway may need to start the year on the Double-A RockHounds roster until an opening develops in the catching corps.

 

MIDDLE INFIELDERS

Franklin Barreto

Franklin Barreto

There’s no doubt that top prospect Franklin Barreto will have the chance to get plenty of at-bats as Nashville’s starting shortstop this season. And since it appears unlikely that either Joey Wendle or Chad Pinder will be able to crack Oakland’s opening day roster at this point, then Wendle should end up seeing the majority of the starts at second base for the Sounds, just as he has for the past two seasons, with Pinder splitting time between both second and short while possibly increasing his versatility by spending some time at other spots around the diamond as well. The A’s re-signed minor league free agent Josh Rodriguez, who’s spent most of his time at second and short of late, and also signed minor league free agent Jermaine Curtis, who’s spent most of his time at second and third. But if all the top prospects are healthy, it’s awfully hard to see where the at-bats are to be found for these two veteran minor leaguers. Meanwhile, infielders Yairo Munoz, Max Schrock and Richie Martin are likely to find themselves starting the season on the Double-A RockHounds roster.

 

CORNER INFIELDERS

Matt Chapman

Matt Chapman

Top power prospect Matt Chapman should find himself firmly entrenched at the hot corner for the Sounds in 2017. Renato Nunez clearly will get his share of at-bats too but, with Chapman viewed as the A’s third baseman of the future, most of them aren’t likely to be coming at third this year. Matt Olson has split time the past couple seasons between first base and right field, while minor league free agent signee Chris Parmelee, a former 1st-round pick with plenty of major league service time under his belt, is also experienced at first and in right, and he and Olson should end up sharing most of the at-bats at first and in right for the Sounds. But let’s not forget that first baseman Rangel Ravelo is still in the picture as well, though he was optioned off the 40-man roster in the offseason. The same is true of utility man Max Muncy, who has spent most of his time at first and third. The A’s signed minor league free agent infielder Jermaine Curtis, who’s spent the bulk of his time at the hot corner, but it seems highly unlikely that he’ll steal many at-bats from Matt Chapman so, if he can crack the Triple-A roster, most of his at-bats would be more likely to come from his secondary position at second base. The A’s also re-signed minor free agent Josh Rodriguez, who’s also far more likely to find at-bats at second than at third, if he can find a way to make it onto the Sounds roster.

 

OUTFIELDERS

Jaycob Brugman

Jaycob Brugman

The Sounds outfield picture is another complicated one to try to piece together at this point, with far more players than spots on the roster. Starting at the top, Mark Canha and Jake Smolinski seem to have the inside track for the final two major league roster spots with Oakland. And if things play out just that way, then major league veteran Alejandro De Aza, who signed a minor league contract in the offseason, would find himself back in Triple-A. However, if De Aza should manage to beat out either Canha or Smolinski, then the odd man out in that competition could be headed back to Nashville. Of course, Smolinksi and De Aza both have plenty of experience in center field, as does Jaycob Brugman, who is ikely to get plenty of at-bats for the Sounds this season, whether he’s starting in center or in either one of the corner spots. The A’s re-signed outfielder Andrew Lambo to a minor league contract, and added minor league free agent outfielder Jaff Decker, as well as Chris Parmelee who, like returning prospect Matt Olson, has spent plenty of time both in right field and at first base. Max Muncy, who will also be in the roster mix, saw significant time in the outfield last year as well. And it’s worth noting that, De Aza, Brugman, Lambo, Decker, Parmelee, Olson and Muncy give the organization a total of 7 left-handed hitters in the Triple-A outfield mix, and that’s on a team that’s only expected to carry 12 position players – of course, catcher Matt McBride spent plenty of time in the outfield last year as well – so something’s definitely going to have to give here one way or another!

 

STARTING PITCHERS

Jesse Hahn

Jesse Hahn

Until recently, the shape of the Sounds starting rotation was looking fairly clear. But the trade of Dillon Overton and Daniel Mengden’s recent foot injury have left things a little less clear. What is clear is that if RHP Jesse Hahn can’t beat out RHPs Andrew Triggs or Jharel Cotton, the favorites to fill the final two spots in the A’s rotation, then Hahn will wind up heading up the Sounds starting five. Two other apparent certainties to join him there are flame-throwing RHP Frankie Montas and former 2nd-round draft pick Daniel Gossett, who finished out the season strong for the Sounds. Beyond those three, the pitching picture starts to get a little murkier, though that’s certainly not for a dearth of viable candidates. LHP Ross Detwiler signed a minor league contract to remain with the organization, but since he has an opt-out clause, he could depart if not guaranteed a spot on the major league roster. But should he decide to stay, then he would likely garner a spot in the Sounds rotation. RHP Raul Alcantara could also be in the mix, but he’s out of options, and it seems unlikely that the A’s would try to sneak him through waivers to get him back on the Nashville roster. RHPs Zach Neal and Chris Smith were two of Nashville’s top starters last season, so they would represent a couple of experienced options, but both primarily shifted to working out of the bullpen during the latter part of last season. Meanwhile, a pair of RHPs the A’s signed as minor league free agents could represent two of the team’s top options – Cesar Valdez, who posted an impressive 1-to-9 walk-to-strikeout ratio for Triple-A Fresno last year, and Michael Brady, who put up a solid 2.89 ERA between Triple-A and Double-A last season. RHP Paul Blackburn, who spent all of last season at Double-A, could fight his way into the competition, as could RHP Heath Fillmyer, but both may be more likely to kick off the year at Midland. RHP Daniel Mengden, who recently underwent foot surgery, and RHP Chris Bassitt and LHP Felix Doubront, both of whom are returning from Tommy John surgery, will all prominently factor into the Sounds pitching picture as soon as they’re ready to return to action as well.

 

RELIEF PITCHERS

Bobby Wahl

Bobby Wahl

There should be no shortage of candidates to fill out the 8 spots in the Sounds bullpen this season. If the A’s should decide to keep RHP Raul Alcantara on the major league roster, since he’s out of options, and there are no further pitching injuries or trades at the major league level, then LHP Daniel Coulombe is likely to find himself starting the year back at Nashville. RHP Bobby Wahl, who posted a 2.65 ERA and 14 saves across three levels last year, RHP Tucker Healy, who struck out 76 in 52 1/3 innings for Nashville in 2016, and RHP Aaron Kurcz all seem likely to return to Music City as well. The A’s also signed minor league free agent RHPs Josh Smith, Tyler Sturdevant and Simon Castro, all of whom have some degree of major league experience under their belts and seem destined to be a part of Nashville’s relief corps this year. The final spots in the Sounds bullpen are likely to be filled by whoever among Zach Neal, Chris Smith, Michael Brady and Cesar Valdez don’t end up finding spots in the Sounds starting rotation. And unless injuries strike, it doesn’t appear that there will be any room for RHPs Trey Cochran-Gill or Sam Bragg, both of whom had solid seasons for Midland last year, to make the move up to Triple-A to start the season.

*          *          *

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 Prospects Final Winter League Stats

Dom = Dominican Winter League

Mex = Mexican Pacific Winter League

PR = Puerto Rican Winter League

VZ = Venezuelan Winter League

–Final Regular Season Statistics–

BATTING (min. 20 ABs)

Renato Nunez

Renato Nunez

Beau Taylor (C)

(Dom) 30 AB / 0 HR / 3 BB / 11 K / .400 AVG / .455 OBP / .500 SLG / .955 OPS

Renato Nunez (3B)

(VZ) 168 AB / 11 HR / 21 BB / 38 K / .304 AVG / .389 OBP / .542 SLG / .930 OPS

Rangel Ravelo (1B)

(VZ) 180 AB / 6 HR / 32 BB / 20 K / .300 AVG / .414 OBP / .444 SLG / .859 OPS

Joey Wendle (2B)

(Mex) 137 AB / 3 HR / 8 BB / 16 K / .307 AVG / .345 OBP / .511 SLG / .856 OPS

Melvin Mercedes (IF-OF)

(Dom) 73 AB / 0 HR / 17 BB / 19 K / .260 AVG / .402 OBP / .288 SLG / .690 OPS

Tyler Marincov (OF)

(Dom) 54 AB / 0 HR / 6 BB / 20 K / .167 AVG / .258 OBP / .167 SLG / .425 OPS

Edwin Diaz (3B-SS)

(PR) 26 AB / 0 HR / 4 BB / 6 K / .115 AVG / .233 OBP / .115 SLG / .349 OPS

 

PITCHING (min. 10 IPs)

js644425

Jake Sanchez

Jake Sanchez (RHP)

(Mex) 31 2/3 IP / 27 H / 1 ER / 5 BB / 27 K / 0.28 ERA / 1.01 WHIP

Giovanni Soto (LHP)

(PR) 48 1/3 IP / 42 H / 11 ER / 9 BB / 31 K / 2.05 ERA / 1.06 WHIP

Carlos Navas (RHP)

(VZ) 27 2/3 IP / 19 H / 7 ER / 8 BB / 30 K / 2.28 ERA / 0.98 WHIP

Cesar Valdez (RHP)

(Dom) 41 2/3 IP / 43 H / 17 ER / 7 BB / 27 K / 3.67 ERA / 1.20 WHIP

Aaron Kurcz (RHP)

(Mex) 20 1/3 IP / 22 H / 10 ER / 8 BB / 14 K / 4.43 ERA / 1.48 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.

%d bloggers like this: