Los Angeles Angels

A's vs. Angels lineups: Josh Phegley replaces Sean Murphy at catcher


A's vs. Angels lineups: Josh Phegley replaces Sean Murphy at catcher

The A's go for an AL West home sweep over the Angels on Thursday in Oakland. 

And manager Bob Melvin is making just one change to his lineup. After an impressive debut, rookie catcher Sean Murphy is taking a seat. 

Veteran Josh Phegley is back behind the dish to catch left-hander Brett Anderson. Phegley, 31, is batting .246 this season with a career-high 10 homers. 

Here are the full lineups for the A's-Angels game, which will be broadcast on NBC Sports California and the MyTeams app. Coverage begins at noon PT, with first pitch at 12:37.

Los Angeles Angels (65-75)
3B David Fletcher
CF Mike Trout
1B Albert Pujols
RF Brian Goodwin
DH Justin Upton
LF Kole Calhoun
SS Andrelton Simmons
2B Luis Rengifo
C Kevan Smith

RHP Luke Bard (1-2, 5.09 ERA)

Oakland A's (80-58)
SS Marcus Semien
3B Matt Chapman
1B Matt Olson
CF Mark Canha
LF Jurickson Profar
DH Khris Davis
RF Chad Pinder
2B Sheldon Neuse
C Josh Phegley

LHP Brett Anderson (11-9, 4.04 ERA)

A's top prospect Sean Murphy puts on show in MLB debut, win vs. Angels

A's top prospect Sean Murphy puts on show in MLB debut, win vs. Angels

OAKLAND -- Sean Murphy's first major league at-bat didn't go quite as he had hoped Wednesday. The No. 3 A's prospect struck out swinging on an 84 mph changeup.

Murphy sure didn't let that bother him in his second big-league at-bat, blasting a 409-foot home run to right-center field to help the A's beat the Los Angeles Angels 4-0 at the Oakland Coliseum.

"I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous or that I didn't have anxiety out there," Murphy said after the game. "But once I settled into the game -- and of course the home run helps -- I felt much better, much more comfortable out there. It's the same game I've been playing, so it's nothing new."

If Murphy was nervous, it certainly didn't show. The 24-year-old catcher turned around a 95 mph fastball with an exit velocity of 106, the second hardest-hit ball of the night.

"I knew I hit it right on the barrel, so I just hoped it kept carrying and at least got down for a hit, and it just went over the wall," Murphy said.

"That's not the last time you'll see him hit a home run to right field like that," A's manager Bob Melvin. "He's got power all the way around the field. ... He's a big kid. He's got great leverage. You look at some of the exit (velocities) and so forth and their times are off the charts."

In addition to homering, Murphy caught a shutout in his first big-league start. He and A's starter Tanner Roark teamed up for 6 2/3 scoreless innings, followed by impressive outings from relievers Yusmeiro Petit, Joakim Soria, and Liam Hendriks to shut it down.

"Tanner was great," Murphy said. "He's a vet and he's got a guy making his first start back there. Of course, I'm nervous. But he worked with me every step of the way. He let me know what I was doing and what he needed me to do. I'm glad he was there, helping me along, and I appreciate him being so patient out there."

Melvin, a former catcher himself, liked the poise Murphy showed behind the plate, despite a couple of early miscommunications.

"It just looked like he got more and more comfortable as the game went along," Melvin said. "I think he'll probably tell you he's just as proud of the shutout as he is the homer."

Murphy was most happy to be able to share the night with his parents, who were in the crowd, along with his girlfriend, sister, and brother-in-law.

"It was awesome," he said. "It's just as much their night as it is my night. They've put a lot of time into my baseball (career), a lot of effort, a lot of trips, a lot of driving me around. I can't thank them enough for all they've done because I wouldn't be here without them."

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It remains to be seen how much playing time Murphy will see down the stretch, with veteran catchers Josh Phegley and Chris Herrmann also in the mix. Regardless, this was quite a performance to begin his career.

Melvin probably summed it up best: "Hit a homer, catch a shutout -- not a bad start."

Watch top A's prospect Sean Murphy smash huge first homer in MLB debut

Watch top A's prospect Sean Murphy smash huge first homer in MLB debut

September is a month of firsts in Major League Baseball.

With rosters expanding Sept. 1, players around MLB make their big league debuts, record their first hits and even hit their first home runs during the month. 

A's catcher Sean Murphy, Oakland's No. 3 prospect in MLB Pipeline's estimation, did all three Wednesday night against the Los Angeles Angels at the Oakland Coliseum.

Murphy struck out swinging on four pitches in his first big league at-bat in the second inning. He stepped up to the plate for his second at-bat of the game in the fifth and crushed Angels reliever Jake Jewell's 95.3-mph fastball 409 feet to right-center field. 

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The 24-year-old clubbed 10 home runs in 31 Triple-A games this season, but Wednesday's dinger could be the one he remembers most from 2019 when he looks back on his career. It helps to have your family in attendance, after all.

That's hard to beat.