So far this season, the A’s Triple-A affiliate Sacramento River Cats look to be the strongest team in the system. The team currently has a record of 13-5 and its pitching staff has the best ERA in the Pacific Coast League at 2.77. Of course, the team will be losing top prospect Jarrod Parker when he joins the A’s rotation this week. But sports the best ERA in the River Cats rotation at 1.42. And the team’s hitters have been doing the job as well, led by hot-hitting outfielder Michael Taylor, who looks like he might finally be ready to fulfill his potential, along with top catching prospect Derek Norris. You can get daily updates on all the A’s minor league teams on my Athletics Farm blog and lots more details right here on Nation after the jump…
SACRAMENTO RIVER CATS
(Triple-A Pacific Coast League)
Record This Week: 5-2
Record This Season: 13-5
Right fielder Michael Taylor continued his hot-hitting ways last week and currently leads all River Cats regulars in hits, runs, RBIs, doubles, total bases, stolen bases and batting average. Outfielder/designated hitter Brandon Moss leads all regulars in on-base percentage and slugging percentage, catcher Derek Norris is second on the team in both hits and doubles, and first baseman Chris Carter slugged 3 homers in Sunday’s game and is currently tied for the team lead in home runs and RBIs. The River Cats’ pitching staff continued its dominance last week, allowing just 13 runs over 7 games. Starters Brad Peacock, Jarrod Parker and Fabio Castro contributed particularly strong outings. A nearly unhittable bullpen has been led by right-handers Jim Miller, Evan Scribner and Merkin Valdez and left-hander Pedro Figueroa, who was recalled by the big club this weekend. Right-hander Andrew Carignan was returned to the River Cats by the A’s after Monday night’s poor performance. And outfielder Collin Cowgill joined the River Cats this week when Tyson Ross was added to the A’s rotation. Jarrod Parker will also be joining the A’s this week, as Graham Godfrey returns to Sacramento.
Outfielder Brandon Moss (10 R / 4 HR / 9 RBI / .358 AVG / .444 OBP / .698 SLG / 1.143 OPS)
Outfielder Michael Taylor (13 R / 2 HR / 14 RBI / .389 AVG / .423 OBP / .625 SLG / 1.048 OPS)
Catcher Derek Norris (10 R / 2 HR / 13 RBI / .333 AVG / .348 OBP / .583 SLG / .932 OPS)
Pitcher Brad Peacock (19 IP / 11 H / 3 ER / 6 BB / 17 K / 1.42 ERA / 0.89 WHIP)
Pitcher Jarrod Parker (20 2/3 IP / 22 H / 5 ER / 6 BB / 21 K / 2.18 ERA / 1.35 WHIP)
(Double-A Texas League)
Record This Week: 3-3
Record This Season: 9-7
Outfielder Shane Peterson has been the RockHounds’ most productive hitter so far this season and currently leads all regulars in runs, hits, triples, walks, total bases, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. But the real strength of the team has been the RockHounds rotation, which has been led by right-handers A.J. Griffin and Daniel Straily - who both have ERAs below 2.00 and have contributed quality starts every time out. Last year’s first-round draft pick Sonny Gray had his best outing of the season last week, allowing just 1 run over 7 innings of work.
Outfielder Shane Peterson (15 R / 1 HR / 11 RBI / .333 AVG / .493 OBP / .556 SLG / 1.049 OPS)
First Baseman Anthony Aliotti (7 R / 1 HR / 8 RBI / .359 AVG / .419 OBP / .513 SLG / .931 OPS)
Second Baseman Tyler Ladendorf (8 R / 1 HR / 2 RBI / .333 AVG / .405 OBP / .455 SLG / .860 OPS)
Pitcher A.J. Griffin (23 2/3 IP / 16 H / 4 ER / 4 BB / 30 K / 1.52 ERA / 0.85 WHIP)
Pitcher Daniel Straily (16 1/3 IP / 9 H / 3 ER / 4 BB / 23 K / 1.65 ERA / 0.80 WHIP)
(Advanced-A California League)
Record This Week: 3-4
Record This Season: 10-7
Infielder Miles Head so far has been living up to the hype we heard when he was acquired from Boston in the Andrew Bailey deal this off-season. Head currently leads the Ports in hits, RBIs, total bases and slugging percentage and is tied for the team lead in homers with first baseman A.J. Kirby-Jones, who also sports the team’s best batting average and on-base percentage. With top pitching prospects A.J. Cole, Ian Krol and Blake Hassebrock on the staff, Stockton’s starting rotation has been led by right-handers T.J. Walz and , who between them have all but 1 of the wins posted by the Ports starting rotation this year. Converted reliever Sean Doolittle has been dominant out of the bullpen, allowing just 1 earned run and striking out 17 in 8 1/3 innings of relief.
First Baseman A.J. Kirby-Jones (11 R / 4 HR / 12 RBI / .377 AVG / .484 OBP / .679 SLG / 1.164 OPS)
Infielder Miles Head (13 R / 4 HR / 16 RBI / .371 AVG / .405 OBP / .686 SLG / 1.091 OPS)
Outfielder Josh Whitaker (15 R / 2 HR / 7 RBI / .286 AVG / .375 OBP / .429 SLG / .804 OPS)
Pitcher T.J. Walz (19 1/3 IP / 14 H / 3 ER / 3 BB / 21 K / 1.40 ERA / 0.88 WHIP)
Pitcher Sean Doolittle (8 1/3 IP / 3 H / 1 ER / 2 BB / 17 K / 1.08 ERA / 0.60 WHIP)
(Class-A Midwest League)
Record This Week: 3-4
Record This Season: 8-9
Outfielder Dusty Robinson has been the big force in the Bees lineup, leading the team in hits, runs, RBIs, triples, home runs and total bases. Catcher John Nester has come on strong of late and is currently second on the team in batting average, third in on-base percentage and fourth in slugging percentage. But Burlington’s pitching staff has been the team’s real strength. Right-hander Drew Granier has been dominant in 4 quality starts, allowing just 3 earned runs and striking out 17 over 22 innings. And fellow right-hander Sean Murphy has a 1.69 ERA in 3 starts. But the Bees bullpen has been strong as well. Right-hander Ryan Doolittle and left-hander Jeff Urlaub have walked none and allowed no earned runs in 12 2/3 innings of relief.
Outfielder Dusty Robinson (13 R / 5 HR / 12 RBI / .254 AVG / .347 OBP / .603 SLG / .950 OPS)
Outfielder Chad Oberacker (8 R / 2 HR / 2 RBI / .389 AVG / .450 OBP / .667 SLG / 1.117 OPS)
Catcher John Nester (8 R / 2 HR / 6 RBI / .297 AVG / .395 OBP / .541 SLG / .936 OPS)
Pitcher Drew Granier (22 IP / 16 H / 3 ER / 4 BB / 17 K / 1.23 ERA / 0.91 WHIP)
Pitcher Jeff Urlaub (7 IP / 2 H / 0 ER / 0 BB / 7 K / 0.00 ERA / 0.29 WHIP)
You can check out my blog - Athletics Farm - for daily updates on the A’s minor league teams and all the top prospects down on the farm.