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Elephant Rumblings: Future infield picture coming into focus

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MLB: Oakland Athletics at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Tuesday, all!

He did it again last night. In the win over the Kansas City Royals, rookie second baseman Zack Gelof took the first pitch he saw in the third and launched his ninth home run of the year:

That ball was absolutely crushed. The torrid start has now put him in some really rare company in A’s history, regardless of Philly/KC/Oakland:

And now he stands alone on top of that list. He is now slashing .304/.370/.624 along with the home runs while providing a steady presence at second base. The club needs some stability around the infield and Gelof is making second base an easy call for manager Mark Kotsay.

With Ryan Noda back from the IL, the club could have a regular infield of Gelof (2B), Noda (1B), Jordan Diaz (3B), and Nick Allen (SS). Allen is the weak link in that group but the club has someone who could be the answer there. Shortstop prospect Darell Hernaiz, acquired in the late offseason trade sending Cole Irvin to Baltimore, has been on a tear this entire year. Hernaiz dominated Double-A pitchers before getting a promotion to Vegas last month. He hasn’t slowed down there as he’s hit .341/.406/.508 in 33 games for the Aviators. Hernaiz isn’t the defender at shortstop that Allen is but he is superior at just about everything else. The club is clearly serious about letting its young prospects get their feet wet in the majors. At this point I think we know what Nick Allen is and isn’t. Hernaiz might be next up, and he just might solidify the middle infield with Gelof for years to come.

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Hidden in there is Joe Boyle (Sam Moll trade) moving up to Vegas…