2012 Draft Report Cards: Oakland Athletics

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For the first time since 1978, the Athletics used their first three picks on high school players. Early returns are positive, and Russell, Robertson and Olson all have star potential
Bonus Spending: $8.3 million
Best Pure Hitter: SS Addison Russell's (1) swing doesn't look pure, but he has a knack for centering balls and explosiveness in his hands. SS/3B Daniel Robertson (1s) has a sweet stroke and reminds the Athletics of David Wright. 1B Max Muncy (5) has a short swing and controls the strike zone well. Best Power Hitter: Russell's bat speed and barrel awareness give him the edge here as well. 1B Matt Olson (1s) has a prototypical power hitter's frame and a smooth lefthanded swing. C Bruce Maxwell (2) has big lefty power and led NCAA Division III with 15 homers and a .918 slugging percentage in the spring. Fastest Runner: After shedding nearly 30 pounds heading into his senior season, Russell showed above-average speed. OF B.J. Boyd (4) is also a plus runner and covers a lot of ground in center field. Best Defensive Player: Russell's improved athleticism also helped him at shortstop. Just like at the plate, his actions aren't always fluid, but he covers ground, makes plays and has a strong arm.


Best Fastball: RHP Nolan Sanburn (2) reached 99 mph in the spring at Arkansas and settled into the mid-90s as a pro. RHP Seth Streich (6) peaks at 95 and may add velocity after being a two-way player at Ohio. Best Secondary Pitch:Sanburn's power curveball shows flashes of being an out pitch with downer movement. Streich and RHP Kris Hall (8) own hard sliders.


Best Pro Debut: Russell
scorched the Rookie-level Arizona League, hitting .415/.488/.717 in 106 at-bats before continuing to rake in brief stops in short-season Vermont and low Class A Burlington. RHP Dakota Bacus (9) joined him on the AZL all-star team by going 3-0, 1.20 with seven saves, a 35-5 K-BB ratio and .121 opponent average in 30 innings. Best Athlete:Russell has quick-twitch athleticism and can do backflips on command. Boyd drew college football interest as a running back/wide receiver. Most Intriguing Background: At No. 62 overall, Maxwell was the highest-drafted Division III player since the Astros took Jason Hirsch with the 59th pick in 2003. Oakland drafted Streich's brother Tobias in 26th round in 2007, and he signed as a Twins fifth-rounder two years later. Closest To The Majors:Sanburn is an obvious choice if the A's develop him as a reliever. But don't count out Russell, who handled everything thrown at him in his pro debut. Best Late-Round Pick: RHP Austin House (14) was a bit of an enigma for scouts at New Mexico, but he pitched well out of Vermont's bullpen featuring a 93-95 mph four-seam fastball and an 89-90 mph sinker. The One Who Hot Away: LHP Kyle Twomey (3) has a great feel for pitching, along with plenty of projection remaining in his slender frame, but Oakland couldn't buy him away from his commitment to Southern California.