Results tagged ‘ MIDLAND ’

Preview: Green, Head and Stassi to Lead A’s Arizona Fall League Squad

Fall isn’t just time for post-season play, it can also be an important time for some of the minor leagues’ top prospects. And as the A’s begin Game #3 of their American League playoff series against Detroit at the Coliseum on Tuesday, some of the team’s top prospects will begin play in the Arizona Fall League.

The league has been going strong for 20 years now, and its schedule runs for about 6 weeks from early-October through mid-November. There are 6 teams in the AFL, with each team comprised of prospects from 5 different organizations. A’s prospects play for the Phoenix Desert Dogs, where this year they’ll be joined by prospects from the Rays, Braves, Brewers and Marlins.

The attendance at AFL games typically tops out at around 200 or so, with the crowds comprised of a healthy dose of scouts, agents, and various professional baseball personnel. Most organizations use the AFL as an opportunity to get some of their top prospects a little more live game action to hopefully help advance their development.

This year, it looks like the A’s are definitely doing that with some of their top hitting prospects while giving their top pitching prospects a little time off. Many of you will certainly recognize the names of top minor league position players like Grant Green, Miles Head and Max Stassi, but don’t expect to be seeing the likes of top pitching prospects Brad Peacock, Sonny Gray or A.J. Cole in Arizona this time around…

 

A’s Prospects in the AFL in 2012

 

Grant Green

Infielder/Outfielder

Age: 25

Drafted 2009 – 1st Round

2012: Sacramento

15 HR / .296 AVG / .338 OBP / .458 SLG / .796 OPS

It will be interesting to see where the A’s #1 draft pick from 2009 ends up playing for the Desert Dogs. At Sacramento in 2012, the former USC shortstop made starts in left field, center field, second base, third base and short. After slumping a bit at the plate for Midland in 2011, Green’s offensive numbers rebounded this season at Sacramento. And a strong performance in the AFL could bolster his chances of landing a utility role with the major league club next year.

 

Miles Head

Third Baseman

Age: 21

Drafted 2009 – 26th Round

2012: Stockton/Midland

23 HR / .333 AVG / .391 OBP / .577 SLG / .968 OPS

Acquired along with Josh Reddick and Raul Alcantara from the Red Sox in the Andrew Bailey/Ryan Sweeney deal, Head turned out to be the best hitter in the A’s minor league system in 2012. The majority of his starts came at third base, though he did get a handful of starts at first base as well. The 21-year-old right-handed slugger will continue trying to make his mark with the bat in the AFL while also working on refining his skills in the field.

 

Max Stassi

Catcher

Age: 21

Drafted 2009 – 4th Round

2012: Stockton

15 HR / .268 AVG / .331 OBP / .468 SLG / .799 OPS

The former 4th-round draft pick had his most productive season in the system with Stockton in 2012, and his defensive skills behind the plate are considered solid. Once viewed as the A’s catcher of the near-future, injuries have slowed Stassi’s progress a bit, and the team is eager to see him get some extra at-bats in the AFL before giving him a chance to see what he can do at Double-A Midland next year.

 

Gary Daley

Starting Pitcher

Age: 26

Drafted 2006 – 3rd Round

2012: Midland

118 IP / 130 H / 67 ER / 71 BB / 79 K / 5.11 ERA / 1.70 WHIP

At age 26, Daley has been bouncing around the minor leagues for 7 seasons now. He struggled in 2012 at Midland and has a career ERA of 5.91 in 605 minor league innings. Lack of control has been the main issue with Daley, as he has averaged 5.7 walks per 9 innings over his extensive minor league career.

 

Shawn Haviland

Starting Pitcher

Age: 26

Drafted 2008 – 33rd Round

2012: Midland

120 IP / 124 H / 64 ER / 47 BB / 104 K / 4.80 ERA / 1.43 WHIP

The 33rd-round draft pick was never considered a top prospect but put himself on the map with a strong 2010 season at Stockton. He struggled mightily at Midland in 2011 though, posting an ERA of 7.08 in 27 starts. The right-hander settled down a bit in his second season at Double-A, but Haviland needs to make a strong impression in the AFL if he really wants to put himself back in the mix again.

 

James Simmons

Relief Pitcher

Age: 26

Drafted 2007 – 1st Round

2012: Midland/Sacramento

63 1/3 IP / 53 H / 21 ER / 22 BB / 50 K / 2.98 ERA / 1.18 WHIP

The former 1st-round draft pick has struggled with injuries and ineffectiveness since being drafted in 2007, but he may have re-invented himself this season as a dependable reliever. In 2012 with Midland and Sacramento, the right-hander struck out 7.1 batters per 9 innings, and a strong season in the AFL could help to bolster Simmons’ chances of landing a spot in the A’s bullpen next season.

 

Brett Hunter

Relief Pitcher

Age: 25

Drafted 2008 – 7th Round

2012: Midland

56 IP / 53 H / 28 ER / 31 BB / 60 K / 4.50 ERA / 1.50 WHIP

Hunter has yet to truly impress since being drafted in 2008. The only thing that really stands out about the right-hander is his career strikeout rate of 10.1 batters per 9 innings over 193 minor league innings Unfortunately, he also has a career walk rate of 6.7 per 9 innings and a 4.99 career ERA. But if Hunter can just learn to harness his stuff in the AFL, he could see his stock start to rise.

 

Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm to keep up with all the news down on the farm!

Friday, August 24th: Cole Pitches Bees to Victory while Weeks Has Big Debut for Cats

 

A’s Farmhand Of The Day

Burlington Bees pitcher A.J. Cole   (5 IP / 0 ER / 5 K / Win)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE (TRIPLE-A)

Salt Lake Bees                4

Sacramento River Cats  3

(LP – Billings 7-6 / 4.03)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Second Baseman Jemile Weeks

(3 for 4 / Double / 2 RBIs / 2 Walks / Stolen Base)

 

 

Worth Noting: Second baseman Jemile Weeks started off strong in his first game back at Sacramento, collecting 3 hits, including a double, walking twice, driving in 2 runs and stealing a base. Third baseman Brandon Inge went 0 for 2 with a walk in his second rehab game with the River Cats, while starter Bruce Billings allowed 4 runs over 6 innings to take his 6th loss for Sacramento.

 

TEXAS LEAGUE (DOUBLE-A)

 

GAME #1

Midland RockHounds  4

Corpus Christi Hooks   2

(WP – Krol 1-1 / 5.40)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Infielder Leonardo Gil

(2 for 4 / RBI / Run)

 

 

Worth Noting: In the completion of Thursday’s suspended game, infielder Leonardo Gil had 2 hits and drove in the tying run for the RockHounds. First baseman Anthony Aliotti, designated hitter Matt Rizzotti and shortstop Dusty Coleman drove in a run apiece in the win. Starter Shawn Haviland allowed 2 runs on 6 hits in 4 innings of work, while left-hander Ian Krol followed up with 3 scoreless innings to earn his 1st win for Midland.

 

GAME #2

Midland RockHounds  6

Corpus Christi Hooks   7

(LP – Ortiz 4-6 / 4.09)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Pitcher Sonny Gray

(6 IP / 2 ER / 9 K)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Sonny Gray had a solid outing on Friday, allowing 3 runs, just 2 earned, on 4 hits while striking out 9 in 6 innings of work. But Midland’s bullpen gave up 4 runs in the 8th and 9th innings, with right-hander Jonathan Ortiz taking the loss for the RockHounds. Third baseman Miles Head had 3 hits, including a double, and drove in a pair of runs in the loss.

 

CALIFORNIA LEAGUE (HIGH-A)

Stockton Ports   4

Visalia Rawhide   6

(LP – Long 4-3 / 4.88)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

First Baseman Tony Thompson

(Home Run / 2 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Nate Long had a rocky outing, allowing 4 runs, 3 earned, on 9 hits over 4 innings to take his 3rd loss. First baseman Tony Thompson and second baseman Ryan Pineda each homered, and third baseman B.A. Vollmuth collected 3 hits, including a double, in the loss.

 

MIDWEST LEAGUE (CLASS-A)

Clinton LumberKings  1

Burlington Bees        4

(WP – Cole 6-3 / 1.99)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Pitcher A.J. Cole

(5 IP / 0 ER / 5 K / Win)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter A.J. Cole delivered another impressive outing for Burlington on Friday, allowing just 4 hits while walking none and striking out 5 over 5 scoreless innings to lower his ERA to 1.99 and post his 6th win for Burlington. Outfielder Aaron Shipman tripled in 2 runs and stole his 9th base, while shortstop Addison Russell also tripled and stole a base for the Bees.

 

NEW YORK-PENN LEAGUE (CLASS-A SHORT-SEASON)

Vermont Lake Monsters  4

Tri-City ValleyCats            7

(LP – Powers 0-6 / 6.10)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Brett Vertigan

(2 Doubles / Triple / 2 Runs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Outfielder Brett Vertigan had a big night on Friday, collecting 2 doubles and a triple and scoring twice for Vermont. But starter Brent Powers had another rough outing, allowing 6 runs over 4 innings to take his 6th loss.

 

ARIZONA LEAGUE (ROOKIE SHORT-SEASON)

AZL Athletics  4

AZL Giants       6

(LP – Hollstegge 5-1 / 4.83)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Third Baseman Chad Lewis

(Home Run)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Jose Torres allowed 3 runs over 5 innings of work, and Tyler Hollstegge gave up another 3 runs in just 1 2/3 innings to take the loss. Right-hander Dakota Bacus wrapped things up by striking out all 4 of the batters he faced, while third baseman Chad Lewis hit his 2nd home run for the AZL A’s.

 

Saturday’s Games:

Salt Lake @ Sacramento – 7:05pm PT

Frisco @ Midland – 7:00pm CT

Stockton @ Visalia – 7:00pm PT

Burlington @ Kane County – 6:30pm CT

Vermont @ Tri-City – 7:00pm ET

AZL Athletics @ AZL Angels – 7:00pm PT

 

 

Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm to keep up with all the news down on the farm!

Thursday, August 2nd: Cats & Ports Win while Hounds & Bees Fall and Russell & Robertson Come Up Big

 

A’s Farmhands Of The Day

Vermont Lake Monsters shortstop Addison Russell (3 for 4 / Home Run / Double / 1 RBI / 2 Runs)

Arizona League A’s shortstop Daniel Robertson (3 for 5 / Triple / 2 Doubles / 3 RBIs / 3 Runs)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE (TRIPLE-A)

Memphis Redbirds           3

Sacramento River Cats  4

(WP – Simmons 1-0 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Collin Cowgill

(Double / 3 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: With the bases loaded and 2 outs in the bottom of the 7th inning, outfielder Collin Cowgill doubled to clear the bases and drive in the tying run for Sacramento, and he then scored the go-ahead run on designated hitter Kila Ka’aihue’s single. Starter Tyson Ross allowed 3 runs, 2 earned, over 6 innings of work, while 2007 1st-round draft pick James Simmons, in his first appearance since his promotion from Midland, struck out 3 in 1 2/3 scoreless innings of relief to pick up the win.

 

TEXAS LEAGUE (DOUBLE-A)

Midland RockHounds  0

Frisco RoughRiders      2

(LP – Gray 5-8 / 4.21)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Pitcher Sonny Gray

(6 IP / 2 K / 4 K)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Sonny Gray had his 6th straight solid start, allowing 2 runs on just 4 hits while striking out 4 over 6 innings of work. But Midland could only manage 3 hits, 2 off the bat of outfielder Eliezer Mesa, while designated hitter Matt Rizzotti doubled for the RockHounds’ only extra base hit of the night.

 

CALIFORNIA LEAGUE (HIGH-A)

Lancaster JetHawks  3

Stockton Ports         6

(WP – Long 4-1 / 3.48)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Dusty Robinson

(Home Run / 2 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Outfielder Dusty Robinson hit a 2-run homer, his 13th, catcher Max Stassi hit a solo shot, his 14th, and third baseman B.A. Vollmuth doubled and drove in 2 runs for the Ports on Thursday. Starter Nate Long allowed 3 runs and struck out 7 over 5 innings to earn his 4th win.

 

MIDWEST LEAGUE (CLASS-A)

Burlington Bees                1

Wisconsin Timber Rattlers  3

(LP – Cole 5-3 / 2.29)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Rashun Dixon

(Home Run)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter A.J. Cole allowed 3 runs and struck out 5 in 5 innings of work on Thursday. But Burlington could only manage to put one run on the board thanks to outfielder Rashun Dixon’s 9th home run for the Bees.

 

NEW YORK-PENN LEAGUE (CLASS-A SHORT-SEASON)

Mahoning Valley Scrappers  5

Vermont Lake Monsters     7

(WP – Eppley 3-0 / 1.35)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Shortstop Addison Russell

(3 for 4 / Home Run / Double / 1 RBI / 2 Runs)

 

 

Worth Noting: In his first game since his promotion to Vermont, this year’s 1st-round draft pick Addison Russell made an impressive debut, collecting 3 hits while blasting a home run and a double. Starter Brent Powers allowed 4 runs, 3 earned, while striking out 8 over 3 innings of work, while right-hander Nate Eppley picked up the win with 3 scoreless innings in relief.

 

ARIZONA LEAGUE (ROOKIE SHORT-SEASON)

AZL Brewers     2

AZL Athletics  11

(WP – Torres 3-0 / 3.79)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Shortstop Daniel Robertson

(3 for 5 / Triple / 2 Doubles / 3 RBIs / 3 Runs)

 

 

Worth Noting: The A’s 2nd overall draft pick this year, shortstop Daniel Robertson, had a big game, collecting 3 hits, including 2 doubles and a triple, while driving in 3 runs and scoring 3 times. Starter Jose Torres had another solid outing, tossing 5 scoreless innings to earn his 3rd win.

 

Friday’s Games:

Memphis @ Sacramento – 7:05pm PT

Corpus Christi @ Midland – 7:00pm CT

Stockton @ Visalia – 7:00pm PT

Burlington @ Wisconsin – 7:05pm CT

Mahoning Valley @ Vermont – 7:05pm ET

 

 

Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm to keep up with all the news down on the farm!

Sunday, June 24th: Draft Picks Olson & Muncy Make Their Mark as Banwart Pitches Cats to Victory and Hounds & Ports Fall

A’s Farmhand Of The Day

Arizona League A’s first baseman Matt Olson (4 for 5 / 2 Doubles / Home Run / 4 RBIs)

 

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE (TRIPLE-A)

Sacramento River Cats  6

Las Vegas 51s                 1

(WP – Banwart 5-2 / 4.29)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Pitcher Travis Banwart

(6 IP / 1 ER / 4 K / Win)

 

 

Worth Noting: Right-hander Travis Banwart, getting the start for A.J. Griffin who was promoted to Oakland, delivered a solid outing, allowing just 1 run while walking none and striking out 4 over 6 innings to earn his 5th win. First baseman Chris Carter, designated hitter Daric Barton and third baseman Stephen Parker all homered for the River Cats.

 

TEXAS LEAGUE (DOUBLE-A)

San Antonio Missions   5

Midland RockHounds  1

(LP – Daley 7-5 / 4.64)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Outfielder Conner Crumbliss

(2 for 3 / Double / RBI / Stolen Base)

 

 

Worth Noting: Midland’s offensive struggles continued on Sunday as the team managed just 5 hits, 2 off the bat of outfielder and leadoff hitter Conner Crumbliss, who also drove in the RockHounds’ only run. Starter Gary Daley once again was the victim of bad defense, including 2 passed balls by catcher Ryan Ortiz. The right-hander allowed 4 runs, just 1 earned, in 4 2/3 innings to take his 5th loss.

 

CALIFORNIA LEAGUE (HIGH-A)

Stockton Ports  3

Modesto Nuts    5

(LP – Krol 1-4 / 4.45)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Catcher Max Stassi

(Home Run / 2 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Ian Krol allowed 4 runs and struck out 7 over 6 innings to earn his 4th loss. Catcher Max Stassi hit a 2-run homer, his 6th, and first baseman A.J. Kirby-Jones, infielder Michael Gilmartin and outfielder Josh Whitaker all doubled in the loss.

 

MIDWEST LEAGUE (CLASS-A)

Wisconsin Timber Rattlers  4

Burlington Bees                5

(WP – Mye 2-0 / 2.80)

Farmhand Of The Game:

First Baseman Max Muncy

(Home Run / 3 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: In his first game with Burlington, this year’s 5th-round draft pick, first baseman Max Muncy had a big game, hitting a 2-run homer to put Burlington on the board in the 2nd inning and driving in the game-winning run for the Bees in the 6th inning. Outfielder Rashun Dixon doubled and drove in 2 runs in the game. Starter Drew Granier allowed 4 runs, 2 earned, and struck out 4 over 5 innings of work, and left-hander Chas Mye came on to earn the win with 1 1/3 scoreless innings in relief.

 

NEW YORK-PENN LEAGUE (CLASS-A SHORT-SEASON)

Vermont Lake Monsters  7

Lowell Spinners                2

(WP – Chitwood 2-0 / 3.86)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

Pitcher Chris Lamb

(4 IP / 1 ER / 5 K)

 

 

Worth Noting: Starter Chris Lamb allowed just 1 run and struck out 5 in 4 innings of work, and right-hander Logan Chitwood came on to allow 1 run over 3 innings to earn his 2nd win. Outfielder John Wooten and first baseman Jacob Tanis both doubled and drove in 2 runs in the win.

 

ARIZONA LEAGUE (ROOKIE SHORT-SEASON)

AZL Athletics  12

AZL Indians      9

(WP – Voiro 1-0 / 0.00)

 

Farmhand Of The Game:

First Baseman Matt Olson

(4 for 5 / 2 Doubles / Home Run / 4 RBIs)

 

 

Worth Noting: In his first game in pro ball, the A’s 3rd overall draft pick this season, 18-year-old first baseman Matt Olson put on a show, collecting 4 hits, including a home run and 2 doubles while driving in 4 runs and scoring 4 times. This year’s 2nd-round draft pick, catcher Bruce Maxwell, had 3 hits, including 2 doubles, and drove in 2 runs in the win.

 

Monday’s Games:

Sacramento @ Las Vegas – 7:05pm PT

(TBD vs. Carreno)

San Antonio @ Midland – 6:30pm CT

(Beard vs. Castro)

Stockton @ San Jose – 7:00pm PT

(Bowman vs. Sanford)

Burlington @ Cedar Rapids – 6:35pm CT

(Cole vs. DeJiulio)

Connecticut @ Vermont – 7:05pm ET

(DeLaRosa vs. Avila)

AZL Athletics @ AZL Royals – 7:00pm PT

(TBD vs. TBD)

 

 

Be sure to like A’s Farm’s page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @AthleticsFarm to keep up with all the news down on the farm!

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

 

 

 

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