Good morning, Athletics Nation!
The Oakland A’s are officially AL West division champions and they’ll go into the 2020 postseason with a high seed in the tournament, so there’s plenty to enjoy at the MLB level right now. But one of the biggest bummers about baseball this summer was the complete cancellation of the minor league season, leaving us no future prospects to track.
That absence will continue into the autumn months, as the Arizona Fall League has also been canceled. However, prospects will still get a chance to put in some work at Fall Instructional League, which will do its best to make up for some of the lost game action, reports Melissa Lockard of The Athletic.
Players will report to instructional camp on Sunday and it will last through the end of October, including some games against other teams’ camps. That will give the youngsters at least a small chance to recoup some live-game playing time.
There are 46 players on the A’s Instructional League roster, and to see the whole list you can click on the Lockard link above. I’m not going to share the whole thing yet because it’s behind a paywall, but below are the members of the Community Prospect List who will be present. The rankings are from the preseason, and some will have changed by now; for example everyone below Jorge Mateo has moved up a spot since he got traded, and everyone also moves up two more spots now that No. 1 Luzardo and No. 3 Murphy have graduated to MLB. (Also two top 2020 draft picks are included where we retcon ranked them.)
- 5. Nick Allen, SS
- (7.) Tyler Soderstrom, C
- 7. Robert Puason, SS
- 11. Austin Beck, OF
- 12. Logan Davidson, SS
- 15. Greg Deichmann, OF
- 18. Brayan Buelvas, OF
- 19. Tyler Baum, RHP
- (20.) Jeff Criswell, RHP
- 20. Jordan Diaz, 3B
- 25. Jeremy Eierman, SS
- 27. Wandisson Charles, RHP
- 28. Richard Guasch, RHP
- 29. Parker Dunshee, RHP
- 30. Brian Howard, RHP
In addition to this list, there are some other notable non-CPL names that you might recognize if you follow the farm, plus some other 2020 draftees and undrafted signings, plus a notable pitcher returning from injury. One name completely absent is outfielder Lazaro Armenteros, even though Austin Beck is on board this time.
A few other names aren’t listed because they’re factors in the MLB picture, either on the active team or the taxi squad. That includes Luzardo, Murphy, Jefferies, Kaprlielian, and some other more advanced prospects.
Speaking of Luzardo and Murphy, they received high praise from Jim Callis of MLB Pipeline on Monday. He made a list of this season’s rookie graduates, ranking them by their future value, and Luzardo placed third behind only Luis Robert and Gavin Lux — that makes him the top pitcher on the list, one spot ahead of Dustin May. Murphy came in eighth, as the only catcher in the Top 30, two spots behind Mariners outfielder Kyle Lewis.
A’s fans didn’t get to watch the minor leagues this year, but at least the bright side is two of the team’s best prospects just went ahead and played well in the majors instead.
- News: A’s clinch 2020 AL West division crown
- Gallegos: What comes next? A’s postseason FAQ
- Slusser: A’s Liam Hendriks for MVP? Cy Young? Rollie Fingers and Dennis Eckersley weigh in ($)
- Hickey: This Could Be the Week That Makes Khris Davis’ 2020 Season for Athletics
- Hickey: Entering the Bubble Won’t Make for Many Changes as Athletics Prep for Postseason
- Seamheads podcast: Previewing final week and postseason
- AN: Bridge Trophy back in Oakland where it belongs
MLB News & Interest
- Norris: Arizona Fall League Cancels 2020 Season ($$$)
- Adams (roundup): Twins Activate Homer Bailey From 45-Day IL
- Dierkes: 2020-21 MLB Free Agents
- Matheson: He’s 5-foot-8, 265 lbs. And yes, he mashes
- Injury updates: KB, Phils, Hamels, Giles
- Today in Baseball History
Yesterday’s Game Highlights
Nope! Off-day. But this other game turned out to be kinda important to Oakland.
Takin' care of business. pic.twitter.com/PKK7hKgJg3— Seattle Mariners (@Mariners) September 22, 2020
Best of Twitter
I think my favorite part is at the end when he goes to drink it but he’s already poured it all out
Poor Frankie :-(
#Angels infielder Franklin Barreto is having shoulder surgery on Tuesday. The Angels will have more info on the recovery timeline after the procedure.— Jeff Fletcher (@JeffFletcherOCR) September 20, 2020
Oh no! All the best to the Brooks family.
#KBO note: Please keep Kia Tigers' pitcher Aaron Brooks and his family in your thoughts. Aaron's wife and their two children back home in the U.S. were injured in a car crash when someone ran a red light. The Tigers said Tuesday Aaron will return to the U.S. to be with them.— Jeeho Yoo (@Jeeho_1) September 22, 2020
More about Brooks, and also another former A’s hurler in Dan Straily
Dan Straily will pitch for the Lotte Giants on Tuesday— Sports Info Solutions (@SportsInfo_SIS) September 21, 2020
He has the 3rd-lowest hard-hit rate in the league, trailing Aaron Brooks and Drew Gagnon.
Straily's miss rate on his changeup and slider are nearly identical, at around 30% https://t.co/NR2fbCkwyE
Yesterday in A’s history
Do you rememba— Oakland A's (@Athletics) September 21, 2020
On this 21st night of September in 1970, Vida Blue no-hit the Minnesota Twins in the A’s 5-0 win at the Coliseum. He’d go on to win the AL Cy Young and MVP awards the following year. #CheersToHistory | @coppolawine pic.twitter.com/du7JBlVses
More recent A’s history: Highlight reel!