Photo by Greg Bessette

2016 Oakland A's Year in Review: A's Draft Class, part two

How did the Oakland A's 2016 draft class fare during their pro debuts? We take a look at the class, 10 rounds at a time. Second up, picks from rounds 11-20.

Click here to read all of our coverage of the A's 2016 draft class

Pick 12: Eli White, SS, Clemson: A polished shortstop from a strong ACC program, White had a down year offensively as a junior, which allowed the As to wait until round 11 to take him. White signed quickly and had a strong debut season, mostly with the Vermont Lake Monsters. Batting in the top three spots in the order for much of the year, White hit .279/.348/.361 with 12 stolen bases and 26 walks in 64 games. He faded during the final few weeks of the season, but hit better than .300 for much of the year. White earned mid-season All-Star honors and was named the Lake Monsters MVP at the end of the season. He was solid both offensively and defensively, showing a good approach at the plate, above-average speed and agility and arm strength from the shortstop spot. Pick 13: Luke Persico, UT, UCLA: A three-year starter at UCLA, Persico put together his best season at the plate for the Bruins as a junior. The As had scouted the Southern California native dating back to his high school days and signed him quickly after the draft. Persico moved around a lot defensively in college and that continued during his pro debut season, as he logged time at first, third, center, right and left. After six games in the Arizona Rookie League, Persico was assigned to Vermont. He never really got going offensively with the Lake Monsters, hitting just .201/.266/.287 with three homers. He struck-out 40 times in 164 official at-bats. Persico is a good athlete and he has some speed, but he will need to tighten up his approach to find success next season. 

Pick 14: Nate Mondou, 2B, Wake Forest: Mondou opened eyes as a sophomore with the Demon Deacons when he hit .338 with a 972 OPS. This season, Mondou hit .302 but his power numbers dipped and he finished with a 799 OPS. The As still liked the offensive potential with Mondou and he gave them validation for their assessment with a strong professional debut. Among the league leaders in hitting for most of the season, Mondou finished his New York-Penn League campaign with a .298/.375/.364 line. He had a 24:27 BB:K. Mondous bat is ahead of his glove and hell need to continue to work on his defense, but he drew praise for his work ethic from the Vermont coaching staff. Mondou may not develop a lot of power, but he has the approach and the speed to be an intriguing top-of-the-order hitter down-the-road.

Pick 15: Nolan Blackwood, RHP, Memphis: Blackwood earned the distinction as the first member of his As draft class to reach a full-season league when he joined the Beloit Snappers from Vermont on July 20. The sidearmer allowed two earned runs in 6.1 innings and saved four of five opportunities with Vermont before making 13 appearances for Beloit. Blackwood struggled initially for the Snappers, but he finished the year with seven straight scoreless appearances (10 innings). Overall, Blackwood had a 4.05 ERA and a 20:5 K:BB in 20.1 Midwest League innings. Blackwood throws hard for a sidearmer, touching 93, and put up a 2.64 GO/AO in his pro debut season. He was hurt by poor infield defense at times and his numbers should benefit as he moves up the ladder and pitches in front of more experienced infielders.

Pick 16: Ty Damron, LHP, Texas Tech: Damron was one of the last members of the As draft class to sign thanks to the success of his Red Raiders team that advanced to the College World Series. Damron was an important part of that Texas Tech staff. Although his ERA was 6.52, he threw several high-leverage innings for Texas Tech. Despite the high ERA, Damrons fastball-breaking ball combination intrigued the As enough to make him a top-20 round selection. He spent his pro debut with Vermont and made 10 appearances in the NY-Penn League. Damron posted a 5.06 ERA in 16 innings. He struck-out 15, but he walked nine and allowed 15 hits. Location can be an issue for Damron. If he can tighten up his command, he could be very intriguing with his stuff from the left-side.

Pick 17: Anthony Churlin, OF, Island Coast HS (Fla.): Churlin was one of only three high school draft picks to sign with the As this season. The Florida native spent his pro debut in Arizona. He got off to a slow start but finished on an up-note, hitting .268 with a .362 OBP in August and collecting six hits over his final 15 at-bats of the season. He finished the year with a .236/.313/.281 line. The outfielder is a good athlete with a lean frame that has room to add strength as he matures.

Pick 18: Seth Martinez, RHP, Arizona State: Martinez was one of the top starters in the Pac-12 this season, posting a 2.75 ERA in 111.1 innings or Arizona State. Not overpowering, Martinez uses good command and changing speeds to pitch better than his stuff would suggest. Unfortunately, the As didnt get to see much of Martinez during his pro debut. He made three appearances for the AZL As before he was shut down for the season with a tired arm. The As expect him to be ready for spring training.

Pick 19: Skyler Weber, C/OF, Georgia: Weber was the second catcher selected by the As in a draft that netted Oakland five backstops. Weber had his best season at Georgia as a junior, hitting .314 with a .355 OBP. A rare catcher who runs well, Weber can also play in the outfield. He appeared in only one game as an outfielder during his pro debut, but could see time at both spots next season. In 22 games for the AZL As, Weber hit .173/.235/.200 with a 14:6 K:BB and five stolen bases in five chances.

Pick 20: Sam Gilbert, RHP, Kansas: Gilbert agreed to terms with the As soon after the draft, but a medical issue voided his contract and he is not currently part of the organization. A senior pick with big stuff and mediocre college numbers, Gilbert could join the A's at a later date if his medical issue is resolved.

Pick 21: Brigham Hill, RHP, Texas A&M: Did not sign

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