Oakland A's MLN: Weekend Warriors

It was a busy weekend around the Oakland A's system. We take a look at some of the top performers over the weekend...

Danny Putnam: There is probably no hotter hitter in the A's system at the moment than Putnam. He is currently riding a seven-game hitting streak, during which he has had at least two hits in every one of those games except for one. He has homered in each of the past two games and has driven-in seven runs. Putnam is now batting .341 with seven homers and 19 RBIs on the season. On Friday-Sunday, he went six-for-10 with four extra-base hits.

Matt Spencer: If Putnam is the system's hottest hitter, Spencer is hot on his heels. Spencer extended his hitting streak to 11 games on Sunday. He is hitting .350 with three homers and 12 RBIs over the last 10 games. On the season, Spencer has struck-out only 11 times in 93 at-bats and he has seven homers and 22 RBIs.

Chris Carter: Carter had a big weekend, as well. In 14 at-bats, Carter had seven hits, including two doubles, a triple and a homerun. Carter has only two homeruns so far this season, but he has 24 RBIs, 11 doubles and is batting .326 with a 928 OPS.

Yung-Chi Chen: Chen received a promotion to Triple-A Sacramento on April 30th after batting .324 in 17 games with Double-A Midland. He made an immediate impact with Sacramento. Over the weekend, he had four hits in eight at-bats, including a homerun and two RBIs.

Mike Affronti: Affronti took Chen's place on the Midland roster and he continued where Chen had left off. He went five-for-10 with a walk in his first weekend with the Rockhounds. The change of scenery was beneficial for Affronti. He was batting only .220 in 14 games with High-A Stockton before the promotion.

Travis Banwart: Banwart continued his hot start to the season with another strong outing on Sunday. He allowed two runs in six innings. In five starts this season, he has allowed earned runs in only two of them and he hasn't allowed more than three earned runs in any start. His ERA is 1.69 in 26.2 innings.

Michael Benacka: Benacka has been a workhorse in the Rockhounds' bullpen. He tossed three innings over two appearances this weekend. He allowed only a hit and a walk and he struck-out six in those three innings. Benacka has a 1.17 ERA and 19 strike-outs in 15.1 innings this season.

David Thomas: Thomas joined the Stockton Ports late last week and he brought with him a hot bat from Kane County. The outfielder had a productive weekend, collecting two hits on both Saturday and Sunday. He three doubles and a homer over the weekend. Between Stockton and Kane County, Thomas has a .284 average with five homers, 13 RBIs and an 875 OPS.

Ben Copeland: Copeland, the A's Rule 5 pick, has been out all season with a shoulder injury that he sustained during spring training. He began his rehab assignment with the Stockton Ports over the weekend. In two games, Copeland had four hits in nine at-bats with a double. He can rehab for 30 days before the A's have to make a decision about whether or not to add him to the major league roster or offer him back to the San Francisco Giants.

Craig Italiano: Italiano has been steadily improving with each start for the Stockton Ports. After struggling last season and being hit around in his first start of 2009, Italiano has gone at least five innings in each of his last four starts. He went six innings on April 26th and then threw a season-best 6.1 innings on Saturday. He has won each of his last two starts. On the season, he has struck-out 22 in 24.2 innings.

Sam Demel: Demel had two scoreless appearances over the weekend. The right-hander is off to a good start this season. In nine appearances, he has a 1.04 ERA with four saves. He has struck-out nine in 8.2 innings.

Grant Desme: Desme got off to a very slow start this season, but he has been hitting much better of late. Over his last 10 games, Desme is batting .290 with three doubles, two homers and six RBIs. He has also stolen four bases. Over the weekend, he had three hits in seven at-bats, including two doubles. He scored two runs and stole three bases.

Anthony Capra: Capra put together one of the best outings of any starting pitcher in the A's system this season on Saturday. He tossed seven scoreless innings against South Bend. Capra allowed only four hits and two walks and he struck-out eight. The left-hander has a 2.14 ERA in 21 innings. He has 28 strike-outs against eight walks.

Corey Brown: Brown's return from the disabled list got off with a bang on Sunday when he launched his first homerun of the season for Double-A Midland and he drove-in three runs. Brown had been on the DL since April 20 with shoulder and knee soreness.

Raul Padron: Padron has been productive since joining the Ports from the Sacramento River Cats on April 22nd. He had four hits in eight at-bats over the weekend and is batting .281 with two homers and six RBIs in 32 at-bats since joining Stockton.

Ryan Webb: Webb earned his fourth win of the season for Triple-A Sacramento on Sunday by pitching 1.2 scoreless innings in relief. He has now made three consecutive relief appearances without allowing a run, a span of 3.2 innings.

Kenneth Smalley: Smalley has been solid out of the Kane County bullpen this season. He was outstanding on Sunday for the Cougars, tossing 3.1 scoreless innings. He struck-out five and walked none. Smalley has 18 strike-outs in 14 innings this season.


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