The A's young squad is filled with promise.
The team's two top prospects, left-handed pitchers A.J. Puk and Jesús Luzardo, look to be a part of the starting rotation this season. But beyond that, it looks rather meek -- at least according to The Athletic's Keith Law.
He has the A's at No. 26 in his farm system rankings.
What he wrote:
"Oakland has found value in a lot of unexpected places, from later draft picks or selections of unconventional players to buy-low opportunities in trades, but they’ve had worse luck when the opportunity costs were higher: drafting Kyler Murray only to see him choose football, drafting Austin Beck and Richie Martin in the first round, handing Lazarito $3 million to strike out 221 times last year. That means the system has a lot of guys who’ll play in the big leagues but not a lot of guys who will be impact big leaguers."
The A's have been sandwiched in between the Red Sox, who are heading into an interesting season, and the Astros who head into an even more interesting season. Both teams, along with the A's, didn't have a busy offseason. Well, at least when it came to actual baseball things.
For Oakland, yes -- the Kyler Murray draft pick was risky. And perhaps I've been living in a bit of a tunnel, but I see promise in some of the prospects who could make an impact in the bigs.
Law mentioned Puk, Luzardo and catcher Sean Murphy in his prospect rankings, so these guys were on his mind.
Perhaps some of these guys aren't getting noticed and the attention they deserve.
The second base situation has a few top prospects vying for the starting job. It could go to Franklin Barreto, but he needs another option to platoon with him.
Many of the prospects have an ETA for this season including Jonah Heim who, despite injuries, put up some stellar numbers in Triple-A.
Sure, Heim took advantage of the PCL, but the .358/.412/.557 line with 38 hits in 35 games, stood out enough to get manager Bob Melvin's attention. He would more than likely be behind catcher Austin Allen, but when Heim gets his chance, damage could be done.
Don't count out Daulton Jefferies or Skye Bolt to make some noise when they're in an A's uniform this season as well.