Prospect Profile: Jared Lansford, P

Jared Lansford has gone from "bashing" with the Bash Bros. in the Oakland A's clubhouse as a child to being drafted by the green and gold. Lansford, son of former A's third baseman Carney Lansford, was drafted in the second round last year by the A's and was one of five high-school pitchers taken overall by the club. Paul Rathert profiles the young right-hander.

Jared Lansford, 6'2'', 195

Year

Team

Lg

Age

W/L

ERA

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

H/9

BB/9

K/9

2005

AZ

RK

18

0-1

1.27

21.1

16

4

3

5

20

0

0

2.11

8.44



Because his father played for the A's for 10 years, Lansford was raised around the big league club. He would often shag fly balls in the outfield with the other players' children during batting practice. His uncles, Joe and Phil Lansford, both played in the majors, as well. To say he's used to a major league atmosphere would be an understatement.

The A's seem to have a theme developing over recent years as they currently have several players in their organization that grew up "baseball brats" including Bobby Crosby, Jason Kendall, Nick Swisher, Ryan Webb, and now Lansford.

Lansford was primarily an infielder while attending high school at St. Francis is Santa Clara, CA. He even got a chance to play on the same team as his idol, his older brother Josh. The only reason he got an opportunity to step on the mound is because as a sophomore, his high school team was short on pitchers during a series in Cuba against the Cuban Junior National Team. Lansford volunteered to take the mound. After his initial wildness, he impressed his coaches enough to be penciled in as the team's closer during his junior season. Lansford would play the infield for the first six innings of the game then take the mound in the seventh to close things out when needed.

He pitched in 13 games as a junior, going 3-1 with eight saves. During his senior season as co-captain, Jared became the ace of the starting rotation and finished the year 8-4 with 1.59 ERA and 96 Ks to only 19 walks. He wasn't a slouch with the bat either. He hit .379 with four homers and 28 RBIs in leading St. Francis to the CCS semifinals.

After being drafted by the A's, Lansford debuted in the Arizona Rookie League and pitched well, giving up only three runs in 21 innings while striking out 20. Lansford knows that there is more to pitching than just striking batters out and has learned how to pitch instead of throw.

On the mound he pulls his cap down low, reminiscent of his agent, former A's ace and his dad's teammate, Dave Stewart. He features a low 90s fastball that he can run up to 94 mph, a nice biting curve and a developing change-up. He threw a decent two-seam fastball in high school, so it's possible that he could bring that back into his repertoire, as well. It runs in on the hands of right-handed hitters nicely. He controls all of his pitches well and because he was raised around the game, has a mature approach on the mound.

2006 Outlook

Lansford will start 2006 as part of a young, talented starting rotation in low-A Kane County. Fellow high-school righties Craig Italiano (drafted in the second round) and Vince Mazzaro (drafted in the third round) will join Lansford as they all begin their first full seasons in the minors. The A's will make sure the focus for the trio is to stay healthy and work on their approach and the team is confident that they have the opportunity to succeed.

The trio combined to strike out 262 hitters in 171 innings as seniors. With the possibility that two other high-school pitchers, Scott Deal and Kevin Bunch, will be part of the Kane County rotation as well, the entire group will be held to strict pitch counts, starting with 75 pitches per outing with the number being stretched out to between 90 and 100 as the season progresses. Eventually, because of Lansford's size and athleticism, he should be a workhorse-type starting pitcher capable of 200+ innings regularly.


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