Following the blockbuster trade that sent the Oakland Athletics top 2 prospects, Addison Russell and Billy McKinney (along with Dan Straily) to the Chicago Cubs for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel the Top 20 Prospect list needed to be updated. Here is the updated list as compiled by MLB.com.
New to the list is Tucker Healy at No. 18 who is having a breakout year pitching at three levels with the Stockton Ports (High A), Midland RockHounds (AA) and currently with the Sacramento River Cats (AAA). Arnold Leon returns to the list at No. 19 as he is hiving a strong year posting a 9-2 record with a 4.47 ERA in 17 games for the River Cats.
This list will be changing over the next few months as Draft Pick from the 2014 June Draft are evaluated and other prospects have their seasons re-evalutaed.
1. Daniel Robertson
2. Raul Alcantara
3. Matthew Olson
4. Renato Nunez
5. Bobby Wahl
6. Dillon Overton
7. Billy Burns
8. Nolan Sanburn
9. Michael Ynoa
10. B.J. Boyd
11. Dylan Covey
12. Chris Kohler
13. Max Muncy
14. Bruce Maxwell
15. Chad Pinder
16. Seth Streich
17. Miles Head
18. Tucker Healy
19. Arnold Leon
20. Dustin Driver
To be eligible for the list the player must have rookie eligibility. Players cannot exceed 130 at bats or 50 innings pitches with a Major League club. Also the player cannot be on the active roster for more than 45 days during the 25 player limit period.
On Wednesday MLB announced that Oakland Athletics prospect Herschel “Boog” Powell was suspended for 50 games for violating MLB’s policy on banned substances.
Powell was recently promoted to the High A Stockton Ports after an amazing first half where he batted .335 with 7 doubles and 17 RBIs in 69 games for the Beloit Snappers. He was selected to the 2014 Midwest League All-Star game where he earned MVP honors.
In just 11 games with the Ports, Powell was tearing up the California League batting .396 and 10 RBIs. He was slated to take over the full-time center field role with the Ports after the recent blockbuster trade that sent Billy McKinney along with Addison Russell and Dan Straily to the Chicago Cubs for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel.
“Boog” Powell is not related to former Baltimore Oriole outfielder Boog Powell. However, the former Oriole was a favorite of the young Powell’s father.
On Sunday afternoon, one of the newest Oakland Athletic pitchers showed fans why they traded for him. Jeff Samardzija held the Toronto Blue Jays to 1 run on just 4 hits over 7 innings in his Oakland Athletics debut.
Samardzija gave up 2 hits in the first inning and had runners on 1st and 3rd with only 1 out. He then got Jose Bautista on a one strike pitch to ground into an inning ending double play. Jeff would go on to retire 13 of the next 14 batters giving up a lone walk in the 3rd inning. Samardzija would only allow two more hits, both coming the 6th inning.
The home crowd of 22,897 saw the Athletics secure their first 4 game sweep of the Blue Jays since 1981. Eric O’Flaherty pitched a perfect 8th inning. Sean Doolittle earned his 13th saves after surrendering a lead off home run to Steve Tolleson in the top of the 9th.
In the wake of the blockbuster trade sending Addison Russel, Billy McKinney and Dan Straily to the Chicago Cubs for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel there will be a new Top 20 Prospects list on MLB.com. As soon as this list is posted, I will publish it here. There are may changes forthcoming on the list as Addison and Billy were the Nos. 1 & 2 (respectively) Prospects in the Athletics organization.
On the 4th of July the Oakland Athletics set off not one, but two sets of fireworks. The first came in the bottom of the 12th inning when Nick Punto drove a ball to left field that ultimately allowed Derek Norris to score all the way from first base for a 1-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays.
The second set of fireworks came around 7:50 p.m. when the Athletics traded No. 1 and No. 2 prospects Addison Russell and Billy McKinney with Dan Straily and a player-to-be-named later to the Chicago Cubs in exchange for starting pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel. This is a bold move that highlights the front office’s commitment to the major league team to win.
This season Samardzija is 2-7 with a 2.83 ERA and 103 strikeouts in 108 innings. Don’t let the win/loss record fool you, Samardzija is coming from the Cubs who own a record of 38-46 and have a team batting average of .236.
Jason Hammel is currently 8-5 with a 2.98 ERA. He has thrown 108.2 innings and has struck out 104 batters. Both pitchers help to bolster one of the best starting rotations in the Majors.
The Chicago Cubs get 3 players who will be a big part of their future. Addison Russell is one of the top prospects in the MLB. Eventhough he has spent most of the season on the disabled list due to a hamstring injury he is on track to be Major League ready by late-2015. With the Midland RockHounds Addison is batting .333 with 3 doubles and a home run in 13 games.
Billy McKinney was the Athletics first round draft choice in the 2013 June draft. He has spent all season with the Stockton Ports where he was batting .241 with 10 home runs and 33 RBIs in 75 games. Over his past 10 games Billy was starting to put it together as he was batting .314 with 3 doubles and a home run.
Dan Straily struggled with the Athletics early this season going 1-2 with a 4.93 ERA and 34 strikeouts in 7 starts. Since joining the AAA Sacramento River Cats, Straily has turned his season around posting a record of 4-3 with a 4.71 ERA and striking out 67 in 63 innings pitched. Straily earned PCL Pitcher of the Week honors on May 26, 2014.
Good luck to all the players on their new teams!