Oakland A's Minor League Player of the Month – June
Stats: .298/.459/.726, 10 HR, 21 RBI, 24:20 BB:K
Olson got off to a slow start this season, batting just .214/.342/.408 in April. Since then, Olson has been a monster for Stockton. He posted a 919 OPS in May and then made that number look paltry in June, putting up a 1185 mark. He homered 10 times, his most in any month thus far despite playing in the fewest number of games in any month thus far (24) because of the All-Star break.
In every month thus far, Olson has improved in every offensive category. He has started hitting for average, his strike-outs have dipped considerably and he has continued to walk at an impressive rate. Olson leads the Cal League in homers with 23 and in walks with 68 and both leads are by a considerable margin.Olson's year-to-date conjures up the season that another tall, lanky first baseman had for Stockton: Chris Carter in 2008. Carter really got going in June and July and finished with a Stockton-record 39 homers. He would help lead the Ports to a Cal League championship that season and he would earn the league's Rookie of the Year award. Can Olson put up a similar finish?
Renato Nunez, Stockton Ports: (.368/.455/.736, 7 HR, 16 RBI, 9 2B) In any other month, Nunez would have run away with the award, as he dominated Cal League pitching in June. Olson's plate discipline was the only thing that separated the two 20-year-old corner infielders. Nunez hit everything he could reach in June to the tune of seven homers and nine doubles. He was named to the Future's Game roster and earned Cal League Player of the Week honors. Nunez is tied for third in the Cal League in homers, behind Olson and the since-promoted D.J. Peterson.
Daniel Robertson, Stockton Ports: (.277/.410/.489, 5 HR, 16:16 BB:K) Robertson has been in consideration for this list every month this season, as he has been a steady force at the top of the Ports' line-up since Opening Day. June was arguably Robertson's best month to date, even though he hit for the lowest average of any month thus far. He got his power stroke going in June and evened his walk-to-strike-out rate while continuing to play above-average defense at short. Robertson, who has an 844 OPS on the season, finished the month with a six-game hitting streak and three homers during that stretch. In 24 fewer games, Robertson has already surpassed his 2013 totals for homers and walks.
Jaycob Brugman, Beloit Snappers: (.293/.396/.537, 9 2B, 13 BB) The Snappers, as a team, have struggled to hit this season, but Brugman has quietly been a force at the plate for Beloit. Injured early in the season, Brugman posted a 797 OPS in 17 games in April, improved that number to 830 in May and then posted a 932 mark in June. The left-hander has destroyed same-side pitching this season, posting a .325/.460/.550 mark versus southpaws. If the A's decide to move up any of the Ports' outfielders to Midland, Brugman figures to get the next crack at a promotion.
Boog Powell, Beloit Snappers/Stockton Ports: (.333/.429/.478, 14:10 BB:K, ASG MVP) Powell began the season red-hot and he hasn't slowed down all season. The at-time over-looked outfielder was leading the Midwest League in batting when he was promoted to High-A Stockton on June 23. Since then, all Powell has done is hit safely in all six Cal League games and throw out three runners from the outfield. Before earning his promotion, Powell won the Midwest League's All-Star Game MVP award. He leads the A's organization with a .337 average and a .450 OBP through 75 games. He also sports a 54:51 BB:K for the year.
Justin Higley, Vermont Lake Monsters: (.275/.311/.594, 12 XBH, 21 RBI) Higley's plate discipline still needs work (23:4 K:BB in June), but his raw tools were on display for the Lake Monsters last month. Higley hit for power and flashed his plus speed, hitting an inside-the-park grandslam. He also tripled twice and stolen four bases in four chances in 18 games. He finished the month tied for the league-lead in RBI with 21.
Ryon Healy, Stockton Ports: .353/.355/.539, 4 HR, 20 RBI; Shane Peterson, Sacramento River Cats: .313/.352/.478, 11 2B, 24 RBI; Bruce Maxwell, Stockton Ports: .284/.407/.448, 13:13 K:BB; Joe Bennie, Vermont Lake Monsters: .326/.408/.391 10:15 BB:K