The A's aren't messing around.
After taking three of four games from the Astros in a critical home series, Oakland is calling up one of the top pitching prospects in baseball. MLB.com's Martin Gallegos reported Monday morning that the A's are promoting A.J. Puk to the big leagues in time for their series in Oakland against the Yankees.
Source: A’s are calling up No. 2 prospect A.J. Puk. The left-hander will join the club in time for Tuesday’s series opener against the Yankees in Oakland.— Martín Gallegos (@MartinJGallegos) August 19, 2019
Puk, the A's No. 2 prospect behind fellow left-handed pitcher Jesus Luzardo, is expected to pitch out of the bullpen. The former first-round draft pick went 4-1 with a 4.91 ERA in nine appearances out of the bullpen for Triple-A Las Vegas.
His high ERA can be tricky, though.
The ball flies in Las Vegas and home runs are being hit at an unprecedented rate in the Pacific Coast League this season. Opposing batters hit just .175 off Puk in Triple-A and he struck out 16 batters in 11 innings while only issuing three walks.
Adding the 6-foot-7 lefty should be a big boost to Oakland's bullpen. The A's, who are 1 1/2 games back of an AL wild-card spot, enter Monday with the sixth-best bullpen ERA in the majors at 4.01. The former Florida Gator is yet another weapon to close the door at the end of games.
Puk, 24, underwent Tommy John surgery in April 2018. He figures to be a starter at the front of the rotation down the line, but for now, he'll look to come out of the 'pen and help push the A's to the playoffs once again.