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Oakland A’s 2018 Community Prospect List #12: Greg Deichmann blasts his way into pro ball

The A’s 2nd-round draft pick had a monster pro debut last summer.

Deichmann at LSU
Photo by Stephen Lew/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Oakland A’s brought in a strong draft class last summer, but their trade haul was even better. That means it’s taken until now to place just our second new draftee on the Community Prospect List. Here’s the current list, including their winning margins (the difference between his % of the vote, and the % of the runner-up):

  1. A.J. Puk, LHP (+62%)
  2. Franklin Barreto, SS (+56%)
  3. Jorge Mateo, SS (+22%)
  4. Dustin Fowler, OF (+24%)
  5. Sean Murphy, C (+0%)
  6. Jesus Luzardo, LHP (+37%)
  7. Austin Beck, OF (+14%)
  8. James Kaprielian, RHP (+2%)
  9. Lazaro Armenteros, OF (+41%)
  10. Grant Holmes, RHP (+18%)
  11. Sheldon Neuse, 3B (+68%)
  12. Greg Deichmann, OF (+17%)

The A’s enjoyed three of the top 50 picks in last year’s draft. With the No. 6 overall they gambled on a high-upside high schooler, but with Nos. 33 and 43 they took college bats who each possessed one particular standout skill. For the latter of those picks, outfielder Greg Deichmann at No. 43, that skill was power.

We didn’t have to wait long to see that thump in action. Deichmann debuted at Low-A Vermont after the draft, and he was by far the best hitter on the club. He hit twice as many homers (8) as the runner-up on the team, and tied for third overall in the 14-team NY-Penn League — then he hit another one in the playoffs. He also showed plenty of plate discipline, with a high walk rate and manageable strikeout rate, all adding up to a wRC+ more than 20 points higher than the next-best Lake Monster.

As encouraging as that initial impression was, though, the first real test is still yet to come. We already knew he was a polished college bat, so seeing him dominate fellow 2017 draftees in Low-A is a noteworthy but fleeting accomplishment. The same might be said if he begins racking up dingers at High-A Stockton, which we already know is a utopia for lefty sluggers.

But if he can keep mashing when he reaches Double-A, especially in Midland’s unfriendly park, then we can start really getting excited. Bonus points if he fast-tracks his way to that jump to the upper minors in 2018, as several members of the ‘16 class did last summer.

Here is the process:

  • Five candidates will be listed on the ballot. The voting will take place in the comments section. I will start with a comment listing all five players, and then I will respond to that with five new comments in the style of “Vote: Player Name” for each candidate. Please do not reply directly to the official “Vote” comments, so that the ballot can stay together in one group.
  • Choose your ONE favorite by Rec’ing the comment with his name. Please only vote for one. The player who receives the most Rec’s earns the next spot on the CPL, while the remaining four players move on to the next ballot where they are joined by a new nominee.
  • In the comments, below the official voting, the community will nominate players to be put onto the ballot for the next round. Similar to the ballot, I will start with a comment calling for nominations, which can then be made as a response to my comment. The format for your comment should be “Nomination: Player Name”.
  • After the first nomination for a player has been put in, all other votes for that player will come from Rec’ing his comment. The player with the most Rec’s earns the nomination.
  • If a prospect is traded, his name will be crossed out, and all other players will be moved up a space. If a prospect is acquired, a special vote will be put up to determine where that player should rank.

* * *

The new nominee is Daulton Jefferies. He was a high draft pick in 2016 but lost almost all of ‘17 to Tommy John surgery. Before the injury his ceiling looked something like Sonny Gray, but we’ll have to wait and see how he responds upon his return this summer. He gets extra credit for being a local guy and UC Berkeley alum.

Scouting grades: MLB Pipeline
Scouting reports: John Sickels
Hitter average rates: 100 wRC+, 8.0% BB, 20.0% Ks

Daulton Jefferies, RHP

Expected level: High-A | Age 22

2017 stats (A+): Only pitched 2 games due to Tommy John surgery

MLB Pipeline grades and Sickels scouting report:

Scouting Grades: Fastball: 60 | Slider: 50 | Changeup: 50 | Control: 55 | Overall: 45

Compensation round pick in 2016 from University of California, pitched seven innings in High-A then blew out elbow and had Tommy John surgery; when healthy, features 90-95 MPH fastball with a slider and change-up both flashing plus; obviously we need to see how he comes back from the surgery. ETA 2020.

* * *

Logan Shore, RHP

Expected level: Double-A | Age 23

2017 stats (A+): 4.09 ERA, 72⅔ ip, 74 Ks, 16 BB, 5 HR, 3.43 FIP
2017 stats (AFL): 6.00 ERA, 24 ip, 18 Ks, 2 BB, 5 HR

MLB Pipeline grades and Sickels scouting report:

Scouting Grades: Fastball: 55 | Slider: 45 | Changeup: 60 | Control: 55 | Overall: 50

Missed a month with a lat strain; fastball around 90 and a bit higher can play up due to contrast with excellent change-up; slider needs more consistency as it varies between mediocre and plus, probably more of a number four starter than an ace unless his velocity picks up further, or unless the breaking ball becomes more consistent, which could happen. ETA 2019.

* * *

Kevin Merrell, SS

Expected level: High-A | Age 22

2017 stats (A-): 140 PAs, 135 wRC+, 2 HR, 10 SB, 6.4% BB, 15.7% Ks

MLB Pipeline grades and Sickels scouting report:

Scouting grades: Hit: 50 | Power: 30 | Run: 70 | Arm: 50 | Field: 50 | Overall: 50

70-grade speed and he knows how to use it, should be significant stolen base threat at all levels; line drive hitter with doubles/triples power; arm strength is questioned at shortstop, could end up as speed-oriented super-utility guy in the long run. ETA 2020.

* * *

Nick Allen, SS

Expected level: Low-A | Age 19

2017 stats (A-): 154 PAs, 84 wRC+, 1 HR, 7 SB, 8.4% BB, 18.2% Ks

MLB Pipeline grades and Sickels scouting report:

Scouting grades: Hit: 55 | Power: 30 | Run: 60 | Arm: 60 | Field: 65 | Overall: 50

Draws praise for defensive ability, running speed, overall hustle and intensity; makes contact and packs some strength into a 5-9, 160 pound frame, but game power is questionable and we need to see how his bat will hold up at higher levels; grade may be a notch too low but I want to see him higher than rookie ball. ETA 2022.

* * *

Renato Nunez, DH

Expected level: MLB | Age 24

2017 stats (AAA): 533 PAs, 109 wRC+, 32 HR, 8.8% BB, 26.5% Ks
2017 stats (MLB): 3-for-15, 1 HR, 1 BB, 8 Ks

MLB Pipeline grades and Sickels scouting report:

Scouting grades: Hit: 45 | Power: 55 | Run: 30 | Arm: 55 | Field: 40 | Overall: 45

The power is legitimate and he’s still young but stock has dropped due to contact concerns and defensive questions; he’s just barely adequate at third base, which won’t be enough to play there for Oakland, and marginal as a corner outfielder; I remain intrigued with his bat but I think he’s trade bait. ETA 2018.

* * *

Vote in the comments below for your favorite of the five by Rec’ing his “Vote: (Player Name)” comment, and post your nomination(s) as well!