Franklin Barreto is on his way

Posted by Jason Wojciechowski on March 16, 2017 at 10:08 PM

Susan Slusser quotes Bob Melvin and Stephen Vogt talking up Franklin Barreto. It seems like Barreto's been on his way forever, but that's only because it's been forever since Josh Donaldson wore the green 'n' gold. Sigh. In any event, the A's consensus top prospect gets praise in the article for doing everything well, and Slusser mentions that he can play both short and second. I had sworn that the A's started playing him in center last year, but his Baseball Reference page calls me a liar; he did play outfield in Venezuela in 2015, but it was all shortstop for the A's, and even all infield in the Arizona Fall League.

The A's have a weird glut of second basemen, with Jed Lowrie, Adam Rosales, Chad Pinder, and Joey Wendle all on the roster. Rosales plays everywhere, and Pinder is specifically talked up in this article in terms of his potential to be the next Rosales, but Wendle and Lowrie are pretty much just second basemen. This makes for an interesting dilemma for the A's when Barreto is ready this summer, although I guess it's likely to be one of those problems that works itself out: if Lowrie is hitting at his 2014-15 pace, he can be traded, even if just for salary relief; if he's hitting at his 2016 level, he can be cut and nobody would blink. And if he's hurt and Wendle or Pinder are playing second, they can be optioned. Even to the extent there's something approximating a hard call to make, you don't let players like Lowrie, Pinder, and Wendle stand in the way of Barreto.