Approaching the completion of our pre-season prospect list review series, we finish up the American League with a look at the Oakland Athletics.
Remember, this is the PRE-SEASON list.
This is not a new list.
These are pre-season grades.
Discuss 2016 Athletics prospect news in the comments section.
1) Franklin Barreto, SS, Grade A-: Age 20, hitting .280/.339/.411 with 10 homers, 29 steals, 36/90 BB/K in 497 at-bats in Double-A; range likely fits best at second base but I think there's every reason to be confident in his hitting long-term. Retains elite status.
2) Sean Manaea, LHP, Grade A-/B+: 19 starts in the majors, 4.53 ERA with 100/30 K/BB in 117 innings; assuming no health complications he should continue to improve from this performance level; could be a true ace in two years.
3) Matt Olson, 1B-OF, Grade B+: Hitting .230/.331/.419 with 34 doubles, 16 homers, 69 walks in 444 at-bats with 127 strikeouts; he's never going to hit for average and didn't get to his power as often against Triple-A pitching but remains promising at age 22.
4) Renato Nunez, 3B-1B, Grade B+/B: Also age 22, hitting .231/.282/.423 with 23 homers, 30 walks, 113 strikeouts in 485 at-bats in Triple-A; less patience than Olson but gets to his power a tad more often; defense at third remains shaky and he may wind up in outfield. Like Olson, I still like him but he's not quite ready yet.
5) Jacob Nottingham, C, Grade B+/B: Traded to Milwaukee Brewers for Khris Davis a month after this list was originally published; disappointing year in Double-A with .237/.301/.346 slash line, 10 homers, rough defense, still just 21 but transition has been difficult.
6) Chad Pinder, INF, Grade B: Hitting .258/.310/.425 in Triple-A with 14 homers, 25 walks, 108 strikeouts in 426 at-bats; promoted to majors last week and 4-for-22 so far; power and defensive versatility should give him some value despite contact concerns.
7) Matt Chapman, 3B, Grade B: 129 games between Double-A and Triple-A hitting .236/.329/.502 with 31 homers, 67 walks, 163 strikeouts in 488 at-bats; outstanding defense, plus power, only concern is contact/batting average.
8) Yairo Munoz, SS, Grade B-: Hitting .231/.273/.342 in Double-A; 19 walks and 68 strikeouts in 360 at-bats; lack of power a significant concern as a hitter though may improve at age 21; has played very well with the glove at short, second, and third.
9) Richie Martin, SS, Grade B-: First round pick from University of Florida in 2015, hitting .233/.326/.317 in High-A; solid on glove but hitting has been disappointing due to lack of strength; age 21.
10) Casey Meisner, RHP, Grade B-/C+: Age 21, erratic season in California League, 4.59 ERA in 114 innings in nine relief outings, 18 starts, 98/55 K/BB, 122 hits; hasn't shown the same type of command he demonstrated last season in Mets system before coming over for Tyler Clippard; potential remains intriguing.
11) Daniel Mengden, RHP, Grade C+/B-: 17 starts in Double-A/Triple-A with 1.46 ERA, 95/29 K/BB in 98 innings, 69 hits, that's excellent obviously; made nine starts in the majors with 5.73 ERA, 49/26 K/BB in 49 innings, 52 hits; note maintenance of strong K rate despite major league troubles, with more adjustment time he can be mid-rotation arm.
12) Raul Alcantara, RHP, Grade C+/B-: 24 starts between Double-A and Triple-A with 3.58 ERA, 103/30 K/BB in 131 innings but 30/3 K/BB in last 40 innings; has always thrown hard but secondary pitches have steadily improved, as has his command. Don't overlook him.
13) Dillon Overton, LHP, Grade C+: 126 innings in Triple-A with 3.29 ERA, 105/31 K/BB; hit hard with 10.97 ERA in five major league starts but more chances should come; fourth starter projection.
14) Sean Nolin, LHP, Grade C+: Traded to Brewers after this list was published, out all year with elbow injury.
15) Ryon Healy, 3B-1B, Grade C+: Very impressive campaign, .326/.382/.558 in Double-A/Triple-A and has kept hitting in the majors at .289/.318/.486; tapping his power more often this year without loss of general hitting skills, past rookie eligibility for 2017 but I'd give him a Grade B right now.
16) Zack Erwin, LHP, Grade C+: Age 21, fourth round pick in 2015 out of Clemson by the White Sox, acquired in Brett Lawrie trade, difficult season with 6.53 ERA, 58/32 K/BB in 80 innings, 109 hits between Low-A and High-A, just went on disabled list. He was excellent in 2015 so there's something wrong here.
17) Dakota Chalmers, RHP, Grade C+: Age 19, third round pick in 2015 from high school in Georgia, ultra projectable but raw, 4.50 ERA in 58 innings in New York-Penn League with 54/33 K/BB, 45 hits; spotty command major issue at this point but given his age he could go any number of directions.
18) Mikey White, SS, Grade C+: Age 22, second round pick in 2015 from University of Alabama, hitting .244/.315/.352 with 39 walks, 124 strikeouts in 438 at-bats in High-A; like Martin, not much of a hitting sensation at this point; defense well ahead of the bat.
19) Rangel Ravelo, 1B, Grade C+: Hitting .260/.330/.387 with seven homers, 31 walks, 60 strikeouts in 346 at-bats in Triple-A; that won't get it done as a corner player in this system.
20) Joe Wendle, 2B, Grade C+: Hitting .276/.321/.449 with 30 doubles, 12 homers, 26 walks, 112 strikeouts in 486 at-bats in Triple-A; steady glove and has some pop but lack of range limits defense and at age 26 his room to improve is minimal. Could be good role player.
OTHERS OF NOTE: Skye Bolt, OF; Seth Brown, OF-1B; Jaycob Brugman, OF; Dylan Covey, RHP; Bubba Derby, RHP; Kevin Duchene, LHP; Ryan Dull, RHP; Daniel Gossett, RHP; Chris Kohler, LHP; Tyler Ladendorf, INF; Sandber Pimentel, 1B; Joel Seddon, RHP; Bobby Wahl, RHP; J.B. Wendelken, RHP
Discuss 2016 Athletics breakthroughs and disappointments in the comments section.