The San Francisco Giants and Oakland A’s are struggling right now.
A combined 0-4 record over the last two days has been a downer for Bay Area baseball fans, as they have been outscored 33-16. However, there are a couple new prospects in their farm systems who are performing quite well.
Kensuke Tanaka – 2B, Fresno Grizzlies
This guy has been a real surprise for the Grizzlies this year. After playing in Japan for the first 13 years of his pro career, his first MLB organization he chose to sign with were the Giants.
In Japan, Tanaka, 31, played in 921 games, hitting 34 home runs and 283 RBIs. His power numbers aren’t impressive, but he did have a .296 average with 156 stolen bases (only being caught 62 times).
Before the season began, nobody could predict how Tanaka would settle in to the higher level of talent in the US. I think he can handle it.
With Fresno, he has piled up 13 RBIs already with a .338 batting average and 12 steals. Keep an eye on this guy.
Stephen Vogt – C/DH, Sacramento River Cats
Vogt is showing why the A’s traded for him from the Tampa Bay Rays on April 6 for cash. In 30 games for the River Cats this year, Vogt leads the team in batting average (.338) and also has hit six home runs and 22 RBIs.
The A’s are blocked at catcher right now with the duo of John Jaso and Derek Norris, but Vogt could be brought up at some point this summer for some help from the bench.
In 155 games in AAA (mostly with the Durham Bulls), Vogt has hit 19 homers, 85 RBIs and has held an average of .289. He has also thrown out 34 percent of base stealers from behind the plate.