10 Athletics Prospects To Watch Beyond The Top 30

The Athletics Top 30 prospects rankings are up now for Baseball America subscribers, with full scouting reports, BA grades and tools grade projections for all 30 players.

Through the process of narrowing the list down to a Top 30, there are other intriguing names who didn’t make the cut but are worth monitoring, with the potential to jump into the Top 30 in the future. Some of those are players who might be in the upper levels and could see big league time this year, though likely in a limited role, while others are lower-level players still in the complex leagues with more upside but plenty of risk.

Beyond the Top 30, these are 10 prospects to watch in Oakland’s farm system.

Carlos Pacheco, OF. Pacheco was Oakland’s top 2022 international signing, inking a $1.2 million bonus, but he struggled to impact the baseball in the Dominican Summer League. He’s a quick-twitch athlete with bat-to-ball skills and enough speed to stick in center.

Colby Thomas, OF. Oakland’s third-rounder in 2022 out of Mercer, Thomas is a toolsy power-speed outfielder with concerns about his hit tool. He’ll make his pro debut in 2023 after right shoulder surgery ended his season in May.

Max Schuemann, 2B/OF. The speedy Schuemann pairs solid plate discipline and contact ability, although he has limited power potential. He can play both infield and outfield and should reach the majors at some point as a versatile bench piece.

Kyle McCann, C. McCann moved up on the plate in 2022, which helped unlock his monstrous power more consistently after a disastrous 2021 season with Double-A Midland. He hit 20 homers while repeating the level in 2022, and has a shot to make it to the big leagues as a bench power bat who can fill in at catcher if he manages his swing-and-miss.

Jacob Watters, RHP. Watters’ arm talent dazzles. His fastball touches 98-99 mph in short bursts and he pairs it with a hammer of an upper-80s slider. Oakland’s 2022 fourth-rounder struggled to throw strikes in college at West Virginia and likely profiles as a future multi-inning battering ram out of the bullpen.

Blake Beers, RHP. Beers primarily worked in relief at Michigan, but Oakland converted him to a starter after taking him in the 19th round in 2021 and he’s throwing more strikes as a pro. His low-80s breaking ball is one of the better sliders in Oakland’s system.

Jack Perkins, RHP. Perkins’ combination of a mid-90s fastball and a hard, sweeping mid-80s slider is loud. Oakland’s fifth-round pick in 2022 will need to enhance his command—he walked six batters per nine innings in college—but he’s worth watching because of his stuff and arm strength.

Bjay Cooke, SS/RHP. The A’s signed the 19-year-old Cooke out of Perth, Australia in May 2022. He’s a dynamic athlete up to 94 mph on the mound with a tight slider that flashes plus. Cooke also surprised the A’s with how well he played shortstop at instructs while also showing solid bat-to-ball skills and pitch recognition at the plate. He’s one of the more fascinating players at the lower levels for Oakland entering 2023. 

JJ Schwarz, 1B/C. Injuries have slowed the development of Schwarz, who turns 27 in late March but was well-known as an amateur. He’s a fringe-average catcher at best, but he has an appealing combination of bat-to-ball skills, strike-zone management and power.

Dheygler Gimenez, RHP. The 20-year-old righty was up to 97 mph with Low-A Stockton and his upper-70s curveball with 11-5 shape flashed plus as well. Gimenez has room on his frame to add more strength and perhaps throw even harder. He’ll need to tighten his command (5.7 walks per nine) and his mid-80s changeup, but he has interesting ingredients.

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