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Oakland A’s 2023 Community Prospect List No. 7

Moving on to round 7.

Atlanta Braves v Washington Nationals Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images

Kyle Muller is the latest addition to the Athletics Nation Community Prospect List for the 2023 season. Muller won round six of the voting in a landslide over Jordan Diaz. Right-hander Gunnar Hoglund joins the list of holdover nominees.

  1. Tyler Soderstrom, C/1B
  2. Ken Waldichuk, LHP
  3. Zack Gelof, 2B/3B
  4. Esteury Ruiz, OF
  5. Mason Miller, RHP
  6. Kyle Muller, LHP

Here is the process:

  • Five nominees will appear on the ballot. The one who receives the most votes earns the top spot in the CPL while the remaining four players move on to the next ballot where they are joined by the next nominee.
  • In the comments, commenters will nominate a player to be put onto the ballot for the next round. After the first nomination for a player has been put in, all other votes for that player will come from Rec’ing that comment. The player with the most Rec’s earns the nomination.
  • The format for the comment should be “Nomination: Player Name”.
  • 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 players should rank.

Lawrence Butler, OF

From MLB Pipeline

Scouting report: Hit: 50 | Power: 55 | Run: 55 | Arm: 50 | Field: 45 | Overall: 45

Perhaps no player in the organization took a bigger step in raising his prospect stock over the past year than Butler. A sixth-round pick out of Westlake High School in Atlanta by the A’s in 2018, he bounced back from early struggles in Rookie ball and a tough 2019 in the New York-Penn League with major strides through the pandemic and returned looking like a completely different player in 2021 as he combined to hit .273 with 19 home runs and 75 RBIs while also adding 29 stolen bases in 102 games combined at Low-A and High-A.

Jordan Diaz, 1B

From MLB PIpeline

Scouting grades: Hit: 50 | Power: 45 | Run: 45 | Arm: 50 | Field: 45 | Overall: 50

Signing out of Colombia during the 2016-17 international signing period for $275,000, Diaz’s success throughout Short-Season ball transferred over to what was his first season at High-A, where he hit .288 with 13 home runs and 24 doubles in 90 games. The A’s felt he made enough progress to add him to the 40-man roster this offseason.

Diaz has shown above average bat speed through the zone, which helps offset his high leg kick during the setup of his swing. He uses the whole field, and now the power the A’s were hoping to see is also starting to show up as he matures and evolves from being more of a gap-to-gap hitter. He already possesses some of the best bat-to-ball skills in the organization. Also showing good plate discipline, Diaz brings quite an advanced approach to the plate, especially for his age.

Max Muncy, SS

From MLB Pipeline

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

Groomed by his head coach at Thousands Oaks High School, former Major League shortstop Jack Wilson, Muncy was selected 25th overall by the A’s in 2021 and signed for $2.85 million to become just the second first-round pick ever drafted in the school’s history. He made his brief pro debut in the Arizona Complex League last summer.

Though he shares no relation with his namesake who stars for the Dodgers, this Muncy can also do some impressive things with the bat. The power was on display during a pre-Draft workout in which the A’s witnessed him effortlessly drive the ball out of the Oakland Coliseum to all fields. His overall approach at the plate still requires some fine-tuning to bring down the swing-and-misses, though that should come with time.

Daniel Susac, C

From MLB Pipeline

Susac has the chance to be an impact player on both sides of the ball. A switch-hitter when he joined the Wildcats, he’s hit almost exclusively right-handed, which scouts thought was his better side as a prepster anyway. Big and physical, he’s shown the ability to drive the ball to all fields, using the gap very well during his freshman season. There’s legitimate power to tap into as well. A former high school quarterback, he’s a better athlete and moves better than you’d think given his size.

Behind the plate, Susac’s plus arm plays well, and he’s improved his overall receiving, though there’s still work to do, enough to provide confidence that he’ll stay behind the plate long-term. The overall skillset is the reason why he was one of two catchers taken in the first round.

Gunnar Hoglund, RHP

From MLB Pipeline

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

Hoglund’s stuff plateaued in his first two college seasons, as he showed the same 89- to 93-mph riding fastball and average breaking ball that he had in high school. His stuff ticked up last fall, however, and he now works at 92-95 for five innings at a time and displays a tighter, harder slider at 84-86. His low-80s changeup serves as a solid third pitch and he can give batters a different look by dusting off a curveball he relied on more as a prepster.

With a durable 6-foot-4 frame, an easy delivery and a history of quality strikes, Hoglund already had a high floor as a back-of-the-rotation starter. Multiple scouts have likened him to a bigger version of Tanner Burns, another SEC right-hander whom the Guardians drafted 36th overall last June. Now the A’s will have to be patient to see how his stuff and control returns from the surgery, but if it does, it’s possible they got a top-10 talent from last year’s Draft.