Oakland A's MLN: Russell Shines In VT Debut

Addison Russell knows how to make a good first impression. After dominating the first stop of his professional career, the Oakland A's 2012 top pick got off to a great start with his new team. Find out about Russell's debut and other news and notes from around the A's system inside...

Russell Continues To Make It Look Easy

A's 2012 top pick Addison Russell dominated the Arizona Rookie League to a point that the A's decided he needed another challenge. After posting a .415/.488/.717 slash line in 26 games with the AZL A's, Russell was promoted to Oakland's short-season affiliate in Vermont. He quickly erased any doubts that his numbers were solely a product of the offensive friendly nature of the Arizona League with a huge debut in the New York-Penn League.

Russell finished only a triple short of the cycle in the Vermont Lake Monsters' 7-5 win on Thursday. He also added a walk. On the season, Russell now has seven homers in 27 games between Vermont and Arizona.

Chad Lewis (three hits), Brett Vertigan (two hits) and John Wooten (two hits) all had big games, as well. Vertigan added his eighth stolen base of the year.

Brent Powers got the start and struck-out eight in three innings while allowing four runs (three earned). Nate Eppley earned the win with three scoreless innings and Ryan Dull added two hitless innings of relief. He struck-out three and didn't walk a batter. Austin House earned his third save by allowing a run in one inning of work. The run was only the fourth run House has allowed in 12 appearances. He has a 24:7 K:BB ratio in 17.1 innings.

Other News And Notes

- A's 2012 second-round pick Nolan Sanburn was added to the Vermont roster on Thursday and he is scheduled to make a start tomorrow. Shortstop Jensi Peralta was sent back to the Arizona Rookie League.

- Another game, another offensive onslaught for the Arizona Rookie League A's. Despite losing Russell to Vermont, the AZL A's continued to roll on Thursday, defeating the AZL Brewers by a score of 11-2. Boog Powell reached three times with two hits and a walk and scored three runs while driving in two and stealing two bases. Daniel Robertson had two doubles (three hits total) and three RBIs. Renato Nunez, Matt Hillsinger and Shawn Duinkerk each had two hits, while Matt Olson drove-in two. Jose Torres had another strong start, tossing five shutout innings. He didn't walk a batter and he struck-out two. Torres has a 3.79 ERA on the year.

- A.J. Cole struck-out five and walked only one, but was hung with the loss when he allowed three runs in five innings for the Low-A Burlington Bees. Two of those runs came on back-to-back homers in the fifth inning. Drew Tyson and Chas Mye combined to toss three scoreless innings in relief of Cole, but the Bees were unable to mount a comeback, losing 3-1. The lone run came on Rashun Dixon's ninth homerun with Burlington. Max Muncy had two hits, including a triple.

- Max Stassi hit his fourth homerun in the past 10 games and his 14th of the season in leading the Stockton Ports to a 6-3 win. Stassi had two hits to raise his average to .274. Dusty Robinson hit his 13th homerun with Stockton (22nd overall) and B.A. Vollmuth had two RBIs in the win. Nathan Long moved to 4-1 with five strong innings. He struck-out seven and allowed three runs. Ian Krol struck-out four in 1.2 scoreless innings of relief and Jeff Urlaub and Zach Thornton combined to shut-out Lancaster for the final 2.1 innings to secure the win. Thornton picked up his 12th save of the season.

- Sonny Gray had a strong start for the Midland Rockhounds, but a quartet of Frisco RoughRiders pitchers combined to shutout the 'Hounds in a 2-0 loss. Gray allowed two runs on four hits and two walks in six innings. He struck-out four. In his last six starts, Gray has allowed two runs or less in five of them (three runs in the other). He has also walked only two over his last 18.2 innings. Brett Hunter also had a strong outing. He tossed two perfect innings in relief of Gray, striking out three. Hunter has 43 strike-outs in 40.2 innings this season.

- Rockhounds' infielder Miles Head was placed on the seven-day disabled list on Thursday. He was hit in the head by a pitch over the weekend and hasn't played since the beaning. The Rockounds' training staff is hopeful that Head will be able to return to the active roster at the end of his seven-day DL stint.

- The River Cats used a four-run rally in the seventh inning to defeat the Memphis Redbirds, 4-3, at Raley Field. James Simmons earned the win in his first appearance with the River Cats since 2009. He tossed 1.2 scoreless innings, striking out three. Simmons came on in relief of Tyson Ross, who allowed three runs (two earned) on eight hits and three walks in six innings. Collin Cowgill had two hits and two RBIs to pace the River Cats. A seventh-inning ejection of shortstop Grant Green set off a series of substitutions that resulted in Josh Donaldson making his first appearance at shortstop.

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