Athletics Might Have Struck Gold With Brennan Milone
After two years at South Carolina—one lost to the pandemic—Brennan Milone transferred to Oregon and put together a masterful season.
That roll continued into his professional career after the Athletics drafted him in the sixth round. Milone spent most of his pro debut playing second base for Low-A Stockton, where he hit .310/.400/.380 with one home run in 27 games.
Milone truly emerged as a standout during instructional league.
“It was our first extended look at him, and he was impressive,” A’s farm director Ed Sprague said.
“His swing is a little unconventional,” Sprague said. “He’s definitely more of a launch-angle guy. He has a unique approach that works uphill. He just hit, so you leave him.”
Milone was a big-time prep prospect at Woodstock (Ga.) High but chose the Gamecocks over the Dodgers, who drafted him in the 28th round in 2019. He endured the Covid season of 2020, then batted just .216 in 2021.
Then came the decision to head to Eugene. Milone hit .337 with 12 home runs in 60 games for Oregon in 2022.
A shortstop in high school, Milone played third base at South Carolina, then first base and DH for Oregon. He has focused on second base in pro ball.
“He worked hard with (infield instructor) Juan Navarrete,” Sprague said. “You could see the improvement just getting out there and playing defense again.”
The A’s plan to give Milone time at both second and third base.
In addition to his hitting ability, Milone shows average speed. The 21-year-old showed power in college, but it is difficult to assess how it will transfer to the pro game.
At 6-foot-1, 189 pounds, Milone will have the opportunity to add muscle as he develops.
— Former A’s farm director Keith Lieppman had been serving as a special advisor to the organization. He decided to retired at 73 after instructional league to spend more time with his family. Lieppman has amassed a massive résumé of success with the A’s and was selected to the organization’s Hall of Fame this year.
Lieppman won Baseball America's Tony Gwynn Award in 2019 for his lifetime contributions to the game.
— The A’s named Cooper Goldby as manager for their Dominican Summer League affiliate. The 27-year-old was Oakland's 36th-round pick in 2017 out of Lewis-Clark State. He reached Double-A in his playing days before being tapped for leadership.