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Rivercats: Someone Can Hit Somewhere!

Even without a bat, Hosmer would be the A's best hitter.
Even without a bat, Hosmer would be the A's best hitter.

In light of the A's "Katrina and the Waves" act last night -- each being one-hit wonders -- I thought you might need a little good news, mayhap some hope, on the A's offensive front.

I don't know how many days, in recorded history, a team's AAA team has had 22 times as many hits as the big league team, but that's what happened yesterday. The Rivercats banged out 22 hits and 18 runs in walloping Tucson (pronounced "TUCK-sin," I believe) 18-6.

Here's a quickie update on some of the Rivercats whose early performances are worth noting...

Jermaine Mitchell

Remember, though now old for his league at age 27 Mitchell nonetheless pulverized AA and AAA pitching in 2011, putting up a downright gawdy .355/.453/.589 line at AA Midland and finishing strong in Sacramento at .302/.401/.453. This year, fully recovered from off-season microfracture knee surgery, Mitchell is off to a 9 for 19 start with 3 BBs.

Derek Norris

Just 23, Norris is at AAA for the first time and so far does not appear to be overmatched in the slightest. After his 3 for 6 day yesterday, Norris sits at 9 for 24 (.375) with 2 HRs. Interestingly, though, Norris has yet to draw a walk -- notable because if Norris has been known for anything in his professional career it's his incredible plate discipline that has translated woefully low batting averages into excellent on base percentages.

Michael Taylor

Perhaps Taylor's confidence was boosted by making AN's list of Top 20 prospects. Voted #18 by the AN faithful -- matching about the number of OFers he'll need to pass on Oakland's depth chart these days -- Taylor is off to a .407 start in 27 ABs, with one HR, 2 BBs, and only 3 Ks. Hey, it's better than hitting badly.

Grant Green

I don't know if Green can catch a baseball better than he did the one day I saw him in person (the Rivercats' exhibition game against Oakland, in which Green dropped a fly ball that allowed 3 runs to score and lunged awkwardly to catch the only other chance), but he did hit a grand slam and drive in 6 runs last night. That being said, Green's start is not auspicious as he is batting just .250 in 25 plate appearances and has walked only once against 9 Ks.

Anyway, even if they're not hitting in Oakland there's some hitting going on somewhere in the A's organization. I have to say the one guy I'm excited about is Mitchell, because regardless of his age there's hitting well and there's absolutely pulverizing the competition and what Mitchell has done, consistently, since the start of last season is just hit, hit, hit at an elite level. I hope to see him in Oakland soon to see what he can do against big league pitching. Heck, maybe he can even do what neither Grant Green nor Yoenis Cespedes seems able to do: Catch a fly ball hit to CF!