|© MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.|
Cats' Green gets established at second06/09/2013 2:16 AM ET
By Jonathan Raymond / Special to MLB.com
For the past year or so that Grant Green has been with Triple-A Sacramento, he's been a pretty consistent presence in the lineup, if not out on the field.
Now Green, who played all three outfield spots, shortstop, third and second base at various points for the River Cats, is the everyday second baseman. And he's looking like a pretty nice asset at the position.
The A's No. 3 prospect extended his recent hot streak on Saturday night, going 4-for-5 with a double, a walk, two RBIs and three runs scored as Sacramento beat Tucson, 10-5.
The 25-year-old is 11-for-21 in his last four games, a quick swing that brought his average up 19 points to .306.
"Me and Sparky [hitting coach Greg Sparks] worked on being a bit more strong in the base, in the setup, which has really translated into hitting the barrel more consistently in the last couple games." Green said. "Just mentally, you feel more confident, which definitely translates into not really worrying about what the pitcher's throwing. You're just seeing the ball, going straight at it."
The 2009 first-round Draft pick is hitting .306/.367/.469 on the season with seven home runs and 39 RBIs in 56 games. Those are the kind of numbers that, now that he appears to have a settled position, would seem to play at second base.
Last year, Green batted .296/.338/.458 with 15 homers and 75 RBIs in 125 games with the River Cats. Given the consistency of his results over the last two years, it looks like the Southern California product is pretty comfortable at the Triple-A level.
"I definitely felt comfortable at the end of last season and being back this year again, it is what it is. I'm just playing here, having a good time with it," he noted. "It's kind of hard to complain with the numbers I put up so far. You just try to keep a level head and keep on going all the way through."
Putting in the work at second base every day and learning the position, he added, has been a relief in comparison to the moving around he did last season as he tried to find a spot that will hasten his trip to the Majors.
"It's coming along real well the last 10, 15, 20 games, feeling more and more comfortable," Green said. "As the games go on, I definitely feel like it's becoming a lot more natural. Definitely, from the beginning of the season, I feel a lot more comfortable, feel like I'm getting the hang of it to where it's like second nature."
On Saturday, Jemile Weeks went 3-for-5 with a pair of triples and two runs scored for Sacramento. In the first three games of the four-game series with Tucson, he and Green have combined for 16 hits, with Weeks sitting out the opener.
Another A's first-rounder, Michael Choice, was 3-for-6 with two runs scored and an RBI. Ranked second among Oakland prospects, he's batting .290/.394/.466 with 10 homers and 46 RBIs in 58 games.