With a .307/.426/.543 line in 127 at-bats through Wednesday, Oakland Athletics 2017 second-round pick Greg Deichmann is putting together the best pro debut for an A’s college outfielder draft pick since Travis Buck, way back in 2005 with short-season Vancouver and Low-A Kane County. Like Buck, Deichmann came to pro ball after a successful career at a top collegiate program.
Deichmann spent three seasons at LSU, starting regularly for the Tigers the past two years. In 2017, Deichmann hit .308/.417/.579 and helped to lead LSU to the College World Series finals. The A’s tabbed him with their second-round pick. Once he completed his college post-season run, Deichmann was assigned to short-season Vermont. Deichmann had two hits and a walk in his second game with the Lake Monsters, and he hasn’t slowed down since. He’s hit for power (five homers, three triples and nine doubles), shown patience at the plate (25 walks against 26 strike-outs), played the role of run producer (25 RBI and 27 runs scored in 35 games) and flashed a strong arm in the outfield (four outfield assists).
Deichmann is a decent bet to land on the New York-Penn League post-season All-Star team, and he already earned a spot in their mid-season classic, starting at DH. Deichmann doesn’t yet have enough at-bats to qualify for the batting title, but he’s tied for 8th in the league in homers and 15th in the league in RBI despite not having as many games played as most of the league leaders. Deichmann is also 10th in the league in walks.
Donald Moore spoke with Deichmann about his transition from the SEC to pro ball.
Donald Moore: Hi Greg, how is everything going for you so far this season?
Greg Deichmann: It’s good. It’s been an adjustment from LSU to here, as far as playing everyday and not on the weekends, but I’m having blast so far.
DM: What are your goals for this year?
GD: Just become the best possible player I can be in this short season we have, and improving my skills and taking in information from the coaches.
DM: What do you feel is your greatest strength as a ball player?
GD: Probably my power. My power bat is the thing that has always carried me throughout my career up until this point. Like I said, it’s whats got me here, so I have to say that is my biggest strength.
DM: What would you’d like to improve on?
GD: Everything. I think that is what the minor leagues is for improving your overall game, take in as much information and knowledge that you can, and learn from the guys here you’re around — kind of what does and doesn’t work for you — and improve your overall game and continue to advance.
DM: How are you adjusting to professional baseball?
GD: I played some summer leagues that are pretty much like this 70-game season and playing everyday, so it’s long. I’m coming off a 70-game college season, but it’s fun and it’s why we do it for the love of the game and you get to come out here and play baseball everyday, and it is your job.
DM: What do you like best about being a pro athlete?
GD: Like I just said, playing a game you love every single day. Coming out here is a blessing doing it as a job.
DM: Any pre game routine?
GD: No, not really. Just get loose and kind of get focused in on the game and have fun.
DM: Any hobbies?
GD: I like to hunt and fish in the off-season, but it’s kind of hard to do that during the season, so pretty much play video games when you’re home and get some down time.
DM: Favorite baseball team growing up?
GD: I really don’t have one, honestly. Being from New Orleans, the only thing we had was a Triple-A team, so I really didn’t have a favorite Major League team. Just kind of watched all around the league.
DM: Where are you originally from?
GD: New Orleans, Louisiana. Actually outside of New Orleans in a suburb called Metairie.
DM: If there is one person that taught you the most about baseball, who would that be?
GD: It probably be a toss up between my dad and my hitting coach, Jeff Motes, who is basically a big brother to me now. I’ve known him probably since I was eight years old and he has kind of helped me get to this point, but my dad has been there every step of the way, too. Like I said, it’s a toss up between the two but I’d have to lean more towards my dad.
DM: Craziest thing you have ever seen on a baseball diamond?
GD: Oh wow, can’t think of anything off the top of my head.I have seen my share of triple plays, though.
DM: Any off-season plans?
GD: No, just kind of get away from the game for a little bit, relax, just get some down time. Coming off a 70 game college season and coming into a another 70 game schedule, so like I said, get some down time and for a little bit and crank it back up.
DM: I want to thank you for your time and the best of luck to you and your baseball career.
GD: Thank you.
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