OAKLANDCLUBHOUSE PItcher OF THE MONTH: MAY
Daniel Mengden, Nashville Sounds
40.1 IP, 1.12 ERA, 32 K, 7 BB, 0.82 WHIP
Mengden made the jump to Triple-A at the start of May, and he didn’t miss a beat against the more advanced competition. In fact, Mengden lowered his walk rate significantly while also holding batters to a lower average against. Mengden was so good for Nashville in May that he didn’t even allow as many as two runs in a start until his final outing of the month. In that start, he allowed two runs in 6.1 innings at Salt Lake City.
The A’s have been hesitant to rush Mengden to the big leagues after so little time above A-ball, but the temptation to bring him to the big leagues must be growing with every dominant start.
Evan Manarino, Beloit Snappers: 27.2 IP, 1.30 ERA, 0.90 WHIP, 23:3 K:BB
Manarino continued to roll along after his strong April. He held opposing batters to a .222 average and didn’t allow a homerun. He also allowed fewer runs in more innings in May than he did in April. He could be looking at a promotion to High-A in the coming weeks.
Chris Smith, Nashville Sounds: 38 IP, 2.84 ERA, 33:13 K:BB
Smith isn’t one of the bigger names on the prospect-filled Nashville roster, but he has quietly gotten off to a strong start for the Sounds. He currently leads the PCL in strike-outs with 64. In May, Smith was more than just a strike-out machine. He held opposing batters to a .232 average and didn’t allow more than three runs in any start.
Boomer Biegalski, Beloit Snappers: 37 IP, 2.43 ERA, 0.89 WHIP, 25:6 K:BB
Biegalski was named to the Midwest League All-Star team on Tuesday, and his outstanding May was a big part of his All-Star resume. He averaged more than six innings a start and held opposing batters to a .209 average.
Heath Fillmyer, Stockton Ports: 33 IP, 2.18 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 38:9 K:BB
Fillmyer posted an ERA under 2.00 for the last two months of the 2015 season, and he is on a similar roll in 2016. He had a standout May, striking out more than a batter an inning and holding opposing batters to a .225 average. He had his good groundball pitches working, as well, posting a 1.41 GO/AO in May.
Corey Walter, Midland RockHounds: 26.1 IP, 2.05 ERA, 12:4 K:BB, 1.07 WHIP
Walter had spent his entire professional career in the bullpen before he moved to the rotation at the start of May. Despite the new role, he has remained as steady as ever. Walter didn’t strike-out a ton of batters in May, but he continued to get hitters to pound the ball into the ground to work quickly through his starts. His GO/AO was 2.14 in May.
Raul Alcantara, Midland RockHounds (30.2 IP, 2.35 ERA, 17:6 K:BB); Cody Stull, Stockton Ports (16.2 IP, 1.62 ERA, 21:2 K:BB); Kyle Friedrichs, Beloit Snappers/Stockton Ports (30.1 IP, 3.26 ERA, 21:4 K:BB); Eduard Santos, Nashville Sounds (13 IP, 0.69 ERA, 18:6 K:BB, 1.00 WHIP); Tucker Healy, Nashville Sounds (12.2 IP, 2.13 ERA, 16:3 K:BB, 0.98 WHIP)