Jason Giambi is an A's AFL alum.
Since its founding in 1992, the Arizona Fall League has developed a reputation for being a breeding ground for future major leaguers. But do players participating in the AFL really end up in the majors? Inside, we take a look at the 109 players the Oakland A’s have sent to the AFL to see whether those players have generally wound-up with big league careers or not.
Since 1992, the Oakland A’s have sent 110 players to the Arizona Fall League (note: this includes A’s players who participated in the AFL as members of Team USA while part of the A’s organization). Of those 110 players, 71 have made it to the major leagues, or 65%. It should be noted that some of the players who haven’t made the big leagues are still active minor league players, including all seven of the A’s players currently participating in the AFL. If you take out the seven current A’s AFL participants, the percentage of A’s AFLers to make the big leagues jumps to 69%. More than 1,600 Arizona Fall League players have appeared in the big leagues since the league’s inception.
From the A’s AFL contingent who did make the big leagues, most only made it into a handful of games. However, a number of players have put together long careers and the A’s have had at least three AFL alums win Rookie of the Year awards (Andrew Bailey is a candidate for this year’s award, which has yet to be announced) and one AL Most Valuable Player. The A’s Opening Day roster included nine players who had previously participated in the AFL as members of the Oakland organization. Oakland’s current 40-man roster has 14 such players.
Below are the 109 players who have been sent to the AFL by the A’s since the inception of the league and a brief summary of their careers. Players in bold have made at least one major league appearance.
Kurt Abbott: .256/.305/.423 line in 702 ML games spread over 9 seasons.
Mark Acre: 9-6 with a 5.17 ERA and 2 SV in 127 career ML IP (114 G).
Danny Ardoin: Has played 15 MiLB seasons; .206/.296/.307 line in 423 ML ABs.
Andrew Bailey: Posted a 1.84 ERA and saved 26 games in 2009 ML rookie season.
Jeff Baisley: Appeared in 14 G for A’s in 2008 (.256/.319/.279 in 43 ABs). Played for Triple-A Sacramento in 2009.
John Baker: Marlins’ starting catcher in 2009. .281/.364/.423 line in 570 career ML ABs.
Scott Baker: (Not the pitcher currently with the Twins) Appeared in one ML game for the A’s and gave up four runs in 3.2 IP.
Daric Barton: .249/.348/.394 line in 678 ML ABs. Likely to enter 2010 as A’s starting 1B.
Shane Bazzell: Reached only Double-A with the A’s; appeared in one Triple-A game with Texas.
Todd Belitz: Seven MiLB seasons; made 13 ML appearances and had a 6.39 ERA in 12.2 IP.
Mark Bellhorn: .230/.341/.394 line in 2,107 ML ABs. Won a World Series with Boston in 2004. Played at Triple-A with Colorado in 2009.
Tom Bennett: Never appeared above Double-A in five MiLB seasons.
Jerry Blevins (Team USA): 4.18 ERA in 64.2 ML IP; strong candidate to be in A’s bullpen in 2010.
Dallas Braden: A’s Opening Day starter in 2009; 14-21 with 4.68 ERA in 280 ML IP.
Corey Brown: Currently batting .348/.412/.761 in 46 ABs in the AFL.
Jeremy Brown: Three hits in 10 ML ABs. Retired before 2008 season.
Eric Byrnes: .260/.321/.442 line in 3,170 ML ABs. Has 109 HR and 128 SB.
Travis Buck: .257/.336/.435 line in 545 ML ABs. Will compete for spot as A’s OF in 2010.
Freddie Bynum: .234/.275/.379 line in 351 ML ABs. Was in Washington chain in 2009.
Adrian Cardenas: Career .299 hitter in 407 MiLB games. Will enter 2010 as one of A’s top prospects.
Andrew Carignan: Missed most of 2009 season with arm problems. Saved 28 games in 2008.
Eric Chavez: 229 HR and an 827 OPS in 1,287 ML games. Attempting to recover from three injury-plagued seasons.
Steve Connelly: Allowed one run in 4.2 ML IP. Pitched in seven MiLB seasons.
Steve Cox: An expansion pick of the Devil Rays. .262/.340/.417 line in 1,239 ML ABs.
Bobby Crosby: 2004 AL Rookie of the Year. .238/.305/.378 line in 2,391 ML ABs, all with the A’s. A free agent this off-season.
Carl Dale: Allowed nine runs in four IP for Milwaukee in 1999. Played seven MiLB seasons.
Jeff D’Amico: Allowed 14 runs in 13.2 innings for Kansas City in 2000. Played in seven MiLB seasons.
Sam Demel: Currently has a 13.50 ERA and one save in AFL.
Grant Desme: Currently has a .444/.519/1.044 line with 10 HRs in AFL.
Josh Donaldson: Drove-in 91 runs for Double-A Midland in 2009. Will enter 2010 season as one of the top A’s prospects.
Sean Doolittle: Missed much of 2009 with a knee injury after almost making the A’s out of spring training.
Justin Dowdy: Was released by A’s mid-season 2009 after posting a 5.21 ERA in 19 innings for Midland.
Mark Ellis: One of the top fielding 2B in baseball. A career .265/.333/.407 hitter in 7 ML seasons.
Chris Enochs: Never reached higher than Triple-A. 4.89 ERA in 8 MiLB seasons.
Andre Ethier: Dodgers’ post-season star in 2009. Has a .291/.363/.490 line over first four ML seasons.
Jeremy Fikac (Team USA): 4.56 ERA in 136.1 ML innings, all in relief.
Mike Frick: Tragically passed away in car accident in 2003. Had a 3.04 ERA in three MiLB seasons.
Justin Friend: Currently has a 2-1 record and a 9.00 ERA in the AFL.
Ben Fritz: Reached Triple-A. Went 33-35 with 5.12 ERA in 6 MiLB seasons.
Jason Giambi: 2000 AL MVP. 409 HR and a 932 OPS in 15 ML seasons.
Jeff Gray: 4.35 ERA in 31 ML IP. Will compete for spot in A’s bullpen in 2010.
Kevin Gregg: Cubs’ closer in 2009. 4.10 ERA and 85 SV in 343 ML games.
Ben Grieve: 1998 AL Rookie of the Year. .269/.367/.442 line in 3,215 ML ABs.
John-Ford Griffin: Seven hits in 23 MiLB ABs. Career .265/.345/.454 hitter in 9 MiLB seasons.
Aaron Harang: 75-80 record with 4.24 ERA in 8 ML seasons.
Jason Hart: Four hits in 10 ML ABs. Career hampered by battle with brain tumor.
Chad Harville: 5.22 ERA in 181 ML IP, all in relief.
Eric Helfand: .171 BA in 105 ML ABs.
A.J. Hinch: Current Arizona D-Backs manager. .219/.280/.356 line in 953 ML ABs.
Eric Hinske: AL Rookie of the Year in 2002. Won a World Series ring with Boston in 2007 and is on the World Series roster for Yankees currently. .254/.336/.438 line in 3,096 ML ABs.
Stacy Hollins: Reached only as high as Triple-A. 4.92 ERA in 8 MiLB seasons.
Dan Johnson: .248/.343/.420 line in 1,103 ML ABs. Played in Japan in 2009.
Brad Kilby: Zero runs allowed in 17 ML IP. Will compete for spot in A’s bullpen in 2010.
Bill King: Reached Triple-A. 4.28 ERA in 6 MiLB seasons.
Shawn Kohn: Reached Triple-A. 3.74 ERA in 5 MiLB seasons.
Shane Komine: Nine runs allowed in 16.2 ML IP. Career hampered by arm injuries.
Graham Koonce: One hit in eight ML ABs. Hit 202 MiLB HR in 14 seasons.
Gerald Laird: Starting Detroit catcher in 2009. .247/.306/.367 line in 1,638 ML ABs.
Jared Lansford: Struggled with mechanics in 2009 at Double-A and Triple-A after breakthrough 2008 season.
Brian Lesher: .224/.275/.380 line in 263 ML ABs. Had 144 HR in 12 MiLB seasons.
Ryan Ludwick: Late career resurrection has resulted in 73 HRs over last 3 ML seasons. Hit 140 HR in 9 MiLB seasons.
Scott Lydy: .225/.288/.333 line in 102 ML ABs. Appeared in more than 1,100 MiLB games.
Matt Lynch: Finished his career in Double-A. Retired in 2006 with a 20-11 record and a 4.23 ERA in 3 MiLB seasons.
Chris Mabeus: Appeared in one ML game for Milwaukee in 2006. Posted a 3.98 ERA in 360 MiLB IP.
Jay Marshall: Former Rule 5 pick has a 7.66 ERA in 49.1 ML IP. Sidearmer has a 2.89 ERA in 299.2 IP in the MiLB.
Mike Maurer: Made it up to Double-A. Posted a 3.65 ERA in 6 MiLB seasons.
Marcus McBeth: Switch from CF to pitching saved his career. Has a 5.95 ERA in 19.2 ML IP. Had a 2.69 ERA in 67 IP for Triple-A Pawtucket in 2009.
Cody McKay: .247/.280/.273 line in 77 ML ABs. Hit .273/.353/.388 in 10 MiLB seasons.
Kevin Melillo: Walked in his only ML AB to date. Played in the Milwaukee system in 2009.
Justin Miller: Journeyman has played for 4 ML teams and in Japan. Had a 3.18 ERA in 56.2 IP for the Giants in 2009.
Mike Mitchell: Arm problems have stalled once-promising career. Was released by A’s in 2009. Has a 3.11 ERA in 5 MiLB seasons.
Mike Mohler: 42nd round pick pitched in 9 ML seasons, posting a 4.99 ERA in 417 IP.
Adam Morrissey: Played 10 MiLB seasons without reaching the big leagues. Has a .276 BA in 1,011 MiLB games.
Mark Mulder: One of the game’s top lefties before injuries wrecked his game. Still attempting a comeback and has a career 103-60 record with a 4.18 ERA in 9 ML seasons.
Steve Obenchain: Reached Double-A. Had a 4.23 ERA in 298 IP in 5 MiLB seasons.
Jose Ortiz: Former PCL MVP never reached the expected stardom in the majors, hitting .243/.305/.379 in 449 ML ABs, but he did hit 75 HRs in Japan.
Raul Padron: An MiLB free agent this off-season, Padron has a .252/.307/.370 line in 6 MiLB seasons.
Cliff Pennington: Former A’s top pick has had an inconsistent career, but he hit .279/.342/.418 in 208 ABs with the A’s in 2009 and enters 2010 with a chance to be the A’s starting SS.
Jason Perry: Had two hits in 17 ML ABs. A career .281/.371/.506 MiLB hitter in 8 seasons, he played in 2009 in the Tampa chain.
Adam Piatt: Former Texas League Triple Crown winner hit .248/.323/.422 in 521 ML ABs.
Landon Powell: A’s current back-up catcher hit .229/.297/.429 in his rookie ML season.
Jamey Price: Pitched in 3 MiLB seasons and had a 3.52 ERA in 217.2 IP.
Omar Quintanilla: Bench player for Colorado in 2009. Has a .220/.277/.290 line in 500 ML ABs.
Todd Revenig: Threw 2 scoreless innings for A’s in 1992, posted a 3.57 ERA in 383.2 MiLB IP.
Connor Robertson: Has allowed 8 runs in 9 ML IP. Has struck-out 436 in 365 MiLB IP. Now in the Mets’ chain.
Richie Robnett: Hampered by injuries, former first-round pick has a .253/.329/.420 line in 6 MiLB seasons. Now in the Yankees’ chain.
Mike Rouse (Team USA): Hit .165/.238/.209 in 91 ML ABs. A career .269/.350/.393 hitter in 8 MiLB seasons.
James Simmons: A’s top pick in 2007 is a returning player to the AFL this year, currently has a 3.52 ERA in 7.2 IP.
Bert Snow: Arm problems hampered a promising career. Saved 72 games in 10 MiLB seasons.
Blake Stein: Famously traded for Mark McGwire. Posted a 5.41 ERA in 475.2 ML IP.
Mickey Storey: Currently has a 9.00 ERA in 5 AFL IP.
J.T. Stotts: Reached Triple-A. Had a .256/.336/.311 line in 2,100 MiLB ABs.
Huston Street: 2005 AL Rookie of the Year. Saved 35 games for Rockies in 2009.
Tanyon Sturtze: Veteran has a 5.19 ERA in 797 ML IP over 12 seasons.
Kurt Suzuki: Current A’s starting catcher. Has a .272/.329/.398 line through three ML seasons.
Nick Swisher: Hit 29 HR for Yankees in 2009. Has 133 HR in 6 ML seasons.
Mark Teahen: Has a .269/.331/.419 career line in 676 ML games for the KC Royals. Was traded by the A's in 2004 in the Octavio Dotel trade.
Leo Vasquez: Reached Triple-A. Had a 3.46 ERA in 429.1 MiLB IP.
Bret Wagner: Reached Double-A. Had a 3.26 ERA in 323 MiLB IP.
Denny Wagner: A’s 1997 first-round pick had a 4.79 ERA in 7 MiLB seasons.
John Wasdin: Veteran of 12 ML seasons. Posted a 5.28 ERA in 793.1 IP.
Jemile Weeks: A’s 2008 first-round pick is currently batting .256/.341/.462 in AFL.
Todd Weinberg: Reached Double-A. Had a 3.90 ERA in 281.2 MiLB IP.
Don Wengert: Had a 6.01 ERA in 438.2 ML IP.
Darvin Withers: Reached High-A. Had a 3.85 ERA in 283.1 MiLB IP.
Steve Wojciechowski: Posted a 5.65 ERA in 138.2 ML IP.
Joel Wolfe: Reached Triple-A. Had a .275/.362/.391 line in 2,222 MiLB ABs.
Jason Wood: Hit .245/.296/.375 in 200 ML ABs. Went six seasons between ML appearances.
Ernie Young: Hit .225/.310/.378 in 8 ML seasons. Helped US win Olympic Gold in Sydney. Hit 327 MiLB HR.
David Zancanaro: Reached Triple-A. Had a 4.43 ERA in 1,011.1 MiLB IP.