The Oakland A's announced their 2008 Organizational Player and Pitcher of the Year on Thursday. The team honored slugger Chris Carter and right-hander Trevor Cahill with the awards. Cahill earns the honor for the second consecutive season.
Carter, 21, takes home the A's Organizational Player of the Year award in his first season in the A's chain. The infielder/outfielder had spent his entire career in the Chicago White Sox chain before being traded twice this off-season for All-Stars. The first time came in early December when he was sent to the Arizona Diamondbacks for slugger Carlos Quentin, who finished second in the AL in homeruns this season and was an AL All-Star. Carter was then dealt to Oakland as part of the trade that sent Dan Haren and Connor Robertson to the Diamondbacks. Haren was an NL All-Star representative.
The powerful Carter spent the entire season with the Stockton Ports. He broke the team's all-time single season homerun record by hitting 39 during the regular season. He added five more in the post-season, helping to lead the Ports to the California League championship. Carter finished the year with 44 homeruns and 122 RBIs in 149 regular and post-season games.
Cahill, 20, earned the honor of being named the A's best minor league pitcher for the second straight season. He won the 2007 award after posted a 2.73 ERA in 105.1 innings for the Low-A Kane County Cougars as a 19-year-old. Cahill advanced two levels in 2008, starting the year with High-A Stockton and finishing his campaign with the Double-A Midland Rockhounds. In 21 appearances, Cahill went 11-5 with a 2.61 ERA and 136 strike-outs in 124.1 innings.
In addition to pitching for the Ports and the Rockhounds, Cahill represented Team USA in the MLB Futures Game and in the Beijing Olympics. Along with fellow top A's pitching prospect and teammate with Stockton and Midland Brett Anderson, Cahill helped Team USA earn a bronze medal at the Olympics.
Cahill has made a quick rise through the A's system. The San Diego-area native was the A's top choice (second round) in 2006 out of high school. After making a handful of appearances for the A's Rookie League team in 2006, Cahill jumped to full-season baseball in May of 2007 and he hasn't looked back since.
Editor's Note: OaklandClubhouse.com will be announcing our picks for A's minor league player and pitcher of the year next week.