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Kirkland wears whole lotta gloves in field

A's prospect plays all nine positions in 'Hounds' regular-season finale
September 5, 2016

Wade Kirkland got to add a title to his resume Monday -- ultimate utilityman.

The Oakland infield prospect took the field at every position as Double-A Midland fell to host Frisco, 5-1, in the regular-season finale for the RockHounds.

Kirkland started the game behind the plate, playing catcher for the first time since high school. He moved to third base in the second inning, getting to participate in a double play. Kellin Deglan struck out and Eduard Pinto was thrown out at third by catcher Beau Taylor with Kirkland applying the tag.

"Only spot I was nervous about was catcher, because it had been a long time since I'd put on the gear," the 27-year-old said. "I've played quite a few games at third, so that one was cut and dry. Taylor put the ball right on the money."

Kirkland enjoyed a quiet game in the field until he took the mound to open the eighth. Facing Joe Jackson, the only batter he was scheduled to pitch to, the Florida Southern product fell behind before giving up a double to left field on a 3-1 count. The extra-base hit came with an extra bit of consequence for Kirkland.

"I threw one curveball, I threw some fastballs," he said. "The guy who hit the double off me, we know each other fairly well, so it was all in good fun. We golf a little bit, so I know he didn't want me to strike him out."

Kirkland became the second Minor League player to play every position in one game in less than a week. Fellow A's prospect Melvin Mercedes accomplished the same feat Saturday for the Class A Advanced Stockton Ports. The plan for Kirkland to give it a try had been kicked around for a few weeks.

"A few weeks ago, we joked around about it," the Florida native said. "Once we clinched, our manager [Ryan Christenson] talked to our farm directors and the RoughRiders coach [Joe Mikulik] and made sure it was OK. I guess it would have been, two days ago, when it was put into action.

"I'd always joked around about it, trying to play all nine in a game. It was a lot of fun. It was tiring, but a lot of fun. Our teammates, they were good sports about it, because they were going position to position. It was a lot of fun."

Kirkland went 1-for-4 at the plate, lining a single to right field in the third.

Midland's Viosergy Rosa doubled in a run.

Darin Mastroianni reached base three times and scored twice while Pinto plated a pair for the RoughRiders.

Robert Emrich is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @RobertEmrich.