Oakland A's MLN: Star Performances

It was an ugly night in Oakland thanks to the continuation of an unseasonably wet spring in the Bay Area and the Oakland A's early season offensive woes. Down on the farm, however, there were several A's prospects lighting up the boxscores. We take a look at those who shined brightest on Tuesday inside...

A.J. Griffin: Griffin is threatening to make quick work of his second tour of the Texas League. The tall right-hander has been nearly flawless thus far in 2012 for the Double-A Midland Rockhounds. On Tuesday, the only thing that could stop Griffin was pitch count, as he was pulled after six innings to keep his early-season work load low. Griffin allowed only one base-runner (who reached on a walk) in his six innings of work. He struck-out eight. In two starts this season, Griffin has allowed two hits and two walks in 11 innings. He has struck-out 16 and has a 1.33 groundout-to-flyout ratio. Unfortunately for Griffin, the Rockhounds have scored only one run with him on the mound and he has yet to record a win despite his hot start.

Grant Green: In two at-bats, Green drove-in a week's worth of runs. The A's 2009 top pick had two at-bats with the bases loaded in the Sacramento River Cats' 18-6 win over Tucson and he made them count, hitting a grandslam and a two-run single. The homer was Green's second of the season. He had only nine all of last year.

Tony Thompson: The Stockton Ports roared back from an early 7-0 deficit to defeat the Bakersfield Blaze by a score of 10-9 on Tuesday. Thompson was a big reason for the Ports' comeback. He collected four hits and finished just a triple short of the cycle. One of Thompson's hits was a three-run homer and he finished with five RBIs.

Sean Murphy: The rangy right-hander made his 2012 debut for the Burlington Bees on Tuesday and he helped the Bees earn a 5-1 victory. Murphy was a little wild (four walks), but he allowed only one hit and he struck-out seven in five shut-out innings.

Jermaine Mitchell: Mitchell has shown no ill effects from his off-season knee surgery. The centerfielder is off to a hot start. On Tuesday, he filled up the boxscore, going 4-for-5 with three runs scored, three RBIs, one walk and a stolen base. He was also caught stealing. Mitchell is 9-for-19 to start the year with an 1124 OPS.

Sean Doolittle: Stockton starter Ian Krol struggled in his first start of the season, allowing seven runs (six earned) in four innings under windy conditions in Bakersfield. Doolittle came on in relief of Krol in the fifth and gave the Ports the opportunity to make their comeback by stopping the Blaze's offensive momentum. Doolittle threw two perfect innings, striking out three. Thus far, Doolittle has seven strike-outs and has yet to allow a base-runner in 3.2 innings this season.

Brandon Moss: Sacramento had plenty of offense, with 22 hits and seven walks, on Tuesday. Moss was another big bat in the River Cats' line-up. He went 2-for-4 with a homerun, a triple, two runs scored, two walks and three RBIs. Moss has a 1509 OPS on the season.

Petey Paramore: Paramore wasn't in the starting line-up for the Ports, but he entered the game early after starter Max Stassi exited with an apparent ankle injury. Paramore made the most of the opportunity, going 3-for-4 with a walk and two runs scored.

Michael Taylor: Taylor had another big game to extend his early season hot streak, going 3-for-5 with two doubles and three RBIs. He also walked. Taylor already has 11 RBIs this season in only six games.

A.J. Kirby-Jones: Kirby-Jones had a rough start to his 2011 season, but he isn't repeating those April blues thus far in 2012. The first baseman had another two hits, two RBIs and two walks on Tuesday for Stockton. Kirby-Jones is 8-for-15 with four walks in four games this season.

Brandon Hicks: Hicks had been off to a slow start with the River Cats at the plate, but he turned it around on Tuesday with a three-hit effort. He also scored two runs. Two of his three hits were doubles.

Derek Norris: It has been awhile since the A's acquired a position player prospect who immediately hit well after the trade. Norris appears to be bucking that trend. He had three more hits in six at-bats for the River Cats on Tuesday and is batting .375 with a 1179 OPS this season.

Adam Rosales: Rosales hasn't let the disappointment of not making the A's Opening Day roster get him down. He collected two hits in five at-bats with a walk and three runs scored on Tuesday. One of the hits was a triple. Rosales has a 962 OPS on the year.

Zach Thornton: It was a wild affair in Bakersfield on Tuesday, with the Ports and Blaze trading offensive punches throughout the game. Stockton fell behind 9-8 in the bottom of the eighth, but crawled back into the lead with two runs in the top of the ninth. Thornton came on in the ninth and prevented another lead change, working a perfect inning with two strike-outs to collect his first save of the season.


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