Results tagged ‘ Midland RockHounds ’
Prospect Flashback: Athletics’ Opening Day Starter Brett Anderson in Silver Hawks, Ports, RockHounds and River Cats Unis
Here is a gallery of Anderson in every uni he wore aside from Class A Advanced Visalia’s. Click on any picture to begin the slideshow. For all past editions of Prospect Flashback, head here.
PHOENIX — A’s manager Bob Melvin came with news Thursday morning, and he didn’t waste any time delivering it.
“Let’s go ahead and say Brett Anderson is our Opening Day starter,” Melvin said, smiling.
The news isn’t so much surprising as it is rewarding for the 25-year-old Anderson, who is entering his fifth season with the A’s. He’ll face the visiting Mariners at the Oakland Coliseum come April 1.
Thrust into a playoff run upon his August return from Tommy John rehab last year, the southpaw responded beautifully, winning his first four starts while posting a miniscule 0.69 ERA while walking just three in 26 innings.
Anderson lost his next two starts and suffered an ill-timed oblique strain, before making a seemingly miraculous comeback in short time to pitch Game 3 of the American League Division Series. He allowed two hits in six scoreless innings in Oakland’s 2-0 win over the Tigers, saving the team from elimination.
“Based on the guys that we have and how successfully he came back for us last year, we really feel like he’s the man to lead the staff,” Melvin said. “He worked hard to get back and put himself in a position to compete with us at a time of the season where there’s no easing into things. You got to be good right away, and he was. Then he gets hurt and we think he’s done, and he works just as hard to get back and pitch in a playoff game.”
To continue reading MLB.com’s story, head here.
It has been a long, strange trip through the Minor Leagues for A’s fourth-ranked — and baseball’s 98th-ranked — prospect Grant Green. In the four years since Oakland made him the 13th overall pick in the 2009 Draft, Green has moved from shortstop to center field to left field to third base and landed, finally, at second base. Oh, and he’s played in the Arizona Fall League three times. (The AFL, mind you, is supposed to be a finishing school for the game’s top prospects.) Now 25, the now-versatile infielder may have played his last game in the Minors, having acquitted himself well with the bat at the Class A Advanced, Double-A and Triple-A levels. This spring, he will battle for a utility man spot on the defending American League West champion squad. If he is in fact moving onto the Majors for the first time and for good, here’s a gallery to remember him by. Click on any photo to begin the slideshow.
A’s 2011 first-round draftee and seventh-ranked prospect Sonny Gray is pitching in Arizona, but not in the Fall League for elite-level prospects of his ilk — rather, the Instructional League for prospects who, you know, need some instruction.
When Oakland selected Gray, a three-year vet at baseball powerhouse Vanderbilt, two Junes ago, it was thought that he would need to change little on his quick path to the Major Leagues.
One and a half seasons in the Minors later, that path seems to be windier than scouts first imagined. Here is how the 22-year-old righty fared in 2012 after his spectacular six-start, post-Draft showing in ’11:
6-9 W-L, 4.26 ERA, 99 K, 58 BB, .271 OPP AVG in 152 IP spanning 27 G at Double-A Midland (26) and Triple-A Sacramento (1)
So what has the already-pitching-rich Athletics pumped about Gray’s future despite those sub-par stats: 1) His 3.54 ERA after the All-Star break; 2) His six strong innings in Game 1 of the Pacific Coast League semifinal series; 3) And, lately, his commitment to getting better.
My source on all this: Longtime A’s player development director Keith Lieppman, who flew into Phoenix on Friday and took my call this morning, champing at the bit to talk about Gray: ”He didn’t have a great year, but he’s made some real, big strides in Instructional League. He is on the rise right now. There were a couple mechanical things to work out and, in so doing, put him in better position… A lot of times, competitors don’t want to make too many adjustments during the season, but this gives him an opportunity. The new delivery will benefit him next year… He’s on target with his direction [and] his foot-strike [to] keep him on line better. He tends to over-rotate, and that wasn’t good position for him to stay consistent.”