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A’s call up Luis Barrera, place Mitch Moreland on injured list

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Top outfield prospect is headed to the majors!

Oakland Athletics v Kansas City Royals Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images

Another top prospect is on the way!

The Oakland A’s called up outfielder Luis Barrera from Triple-A on Tuesday, the team announced. He will borrow the roster spot of DH Mitch Moreland, who went on the 10-day injured list.

For Moreland, the diagnosis is “an inflamed costochondral junction of his left rib,” retroactive to May 15. He last played Friday but was lifted mid-game for a pinch-hitter, and then missed the next two contests.

In the meantime, Moreland’s injury makes room for Barrera to get his first experience in the majors. The lefty signed with the A’s as a teenager in 2012 and has worked his way up the farm system since then, and as of this past winter he ranks No. 8 on our Community Prospect List, making him the top outfield prospect in the A’s farm system.

The 25-year-old Barrera boasts excellent speed, which helps him on both sides of the ball. At the plate he’s an aggressive hitter who makes a lot of contact to all fields, though without much HR power. In the field he’s a plus defender with a great arm. MLB insider Martin Gallegos mentions Arizona D’Backs outfielder David Peralta as a potential comp in terms of skill set.

Perhaps most lacking for Barrera is experience. Injuries in 2019 limited him to just 54 games in Double-A, and then there were no minors at all in 2020, forcing him to wait until this month to make his Triple-A debut.

  • Barrera, 2019 AA: .321/.357/.513, 139 wRC+, 4 HR, 5.0% BB, 20.0% Ks

Still, he got off to a hot start for the Las Vegas Aviators in 49 plate appearances.

  • Barrera, 2021 AAA: .349/.429/.558, 151 wRC+, 2 HR, 12.2% BB, 20.4% Ks

He was already on the 40-man roster, so no more corresponding moves were needed to get him up to the majors.

With the addition of Barrera, the following members of our Community Prospect List have reached the majors for Oakland this season:

  • LHP A.J. Puk (1)
  • RHP James Kaprielian (7)
  • OF Luis Barrera (8)
  • OF Ka’ai Tom (15) (traded)
  • OF Seth Brown (18)

Tom is gone to the Pirates, and Puk pitched one game before going on the injured list. Kaprielian is in the current rotation, and Brown is getting regular playing time in the lineup though not quite every day. Brown is among the hitters who could perhaps see extra at-bats while fellow lefty Moreland is out.

Here’s the updated roster, with the injury report below.

Oakland A's 26-man roster
Pitchers Hitters
Starters

Chris Bassitt (R)
Sean Manaea (L)
Frankie Montas (R)
Cole Irvin (L)
James Kaprielian (R)

IL: Jesús Luzardo (L)
IL: Mike Fiers (R)

Relievers

Lou Trivino (R)
Jake Diekman (L)
Yusmeiro Petit (R)
Sergio Romo (R)
Burch Smith (R)
Deolis Guerra (R)
Reymin Guduan (L)
Adam Kolarek (L)

IL: A.J. Puk (L)
IL: J.B. Wendelken (R)
60-IL: Trevor Rosenthal (R)
Catchers

Sean Murphy (R)
Aramis Garcia (R)

Infielders

1B: Matt Olson (L)
2B: Jed Lowrie (S)
SS: Elvis Andrus (R)
3B: Matt Chapman (R)
UT: Tony Kemp (L)

IL: Mitch Moreland (L)

Outfielders

Mark Canha (R)
Ramon Laureano (R)
Chad Pinder (R)
Stephen Piscotty (R)
Seth Brown (L)
Luis Barrera (L)

Injury report:

  • RHP Trevor Rosenthal, 60-day IL, thoracic outlet surgery (July at least)
  • RHP Mike Fiers, 10-day IL, elbow (shut down 5/8, for a couple weeks)
  • RHP J.B. Wendelken, 10-day IL, oblique (no timetable yet)
  • LHP Jesús Luzardo, 10-day IL, finger (week-to-week; end of May?)
  • DH Mitch Moreland, 10-day IL, rib (no timetable yet)
  • LHP A.J. Puk, 10-day IL, biceps (on rehab in Triple-A)