About half way through the Arizona Fall League schedule, a number of Oakland Athletics minor leaguers are toiling away in the desert as they continue to work hard to fine tune their skills in hopes of one day making it to Oakland. In years past, the A’s have sent their players to be members of the Phoenix Desert Dogs, but the Desert Dogs are now from Glendale, and the A’s are represented as members of the Mesa Solar Sox. Most of the minor leaguers are fringe prospects, but one super prospect stands tall amongst them, by the name of Addison Russell.
First baseman Max Muncy, catcher David Freitas, and pitchers Ryan Dull, Omar Duran, Seth Frankoff, and Jeff Urlaub fill out the A’s representatives. The Solar Sox sit atop the AFL East with a 10-5 record.
The A’s position players have brought cold bats to the desert so far. Addison Russell has posted a .220/.298/.390 line, Max Muncy is hitting .188/.270/.188, and David Freitas is hitting .105/.292/.263. On the mound they have fared somewhat better though. Jeff Urlaub has tossed six scoreless innings of relief, Seth Frankoff has a 1.42 ERA in 6.1 innings, Ryan Dull hasn’t fared as well though, posting a 7.20 ERA in five innings of work, and Omar Duran has a 7.71 ERA in 4.2 innings.
A player’s performance in the AFL cannot be used to predict or dictate the career trajectory of anyone, and the sample sizes are incredibly small, to go along with the small size of the league itself. That said, we would all like to see a little more production from the offensive side, especially from Russell and Muncy who may have higher ceilings in general. There’s still time though to get their AFL season’s pointed in the right direction so they can move into the offseason on a high note.