The Oakland Athletics draft class finished up with a mix of college seniors and high school prospects with strong commitments to collegiate programs. Learn more about the A’s 2017 31-40 round picks below.
Round 31: Brandon Withers, RHP, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Va.
Bio details: 6’1’’, 205, R/R, Birthdate: 07/04/1994
Analysis: A fifth-year senior, Withers pitched four years at JMU and posted a 7.10 ERA in 166 innings. He struck-out 154 but walked 115 over that stretch. Withers walked on to the JMU squad and became an important part of their pitching staff as his career progressed.
Withers will be a project to clean up his command, but he can get his fastball into the mid-90s and he has a curveball that is a promising pitch. He also features a slider. Withers has a starter’s build and was the Dukes’ Friday night starter this season.
Round 32: Caleb Evans, RHP, Liberty University, Lynchburg, Va.
Bio details: 6’8’’, 220, R/R, Birthdate: 03/04/1995
Analysis: With 6’9’’ Brian Howard in the A’s draft class, Evans won’t be the tallest person in the A’s organization, but he will be close after signing. After pitching only sparingly his first two seasons, Evans made 11 relief appearances as a junior and threw a career-high 68 innings over 13 starts and two relief appearances as a senior. He posted a 4.10 ERA with a 57:33 K:BB this year for the Flames.
Evans added a split-fingered fastball this season and he used it to compliment his 88-91 MPH fastball. He also features a slider and a change-up, although he mostly dropped the change-up this season in favor of the split-finger. Evans gets plenty of extension on his pitches because of his height and he has a relatively fresh arm after not throwing a lot early in his college career.
Round 33: Jake Lumley, 2B, Canisius College, Lynchburg, Ny.
Bio details: 6’0’’, 185, L/R, Birthdate: 02/13/1995
Analysis: Two years after taking Canadian Brett Siddall out of Canisius, the A’s went back to upstate New York to select Siddall’s former teammate in both high school and college, Lumley. A four-year player for the Golden Griffins, the Windsor, Ontario, native hit .336 with a .426 OBP during his collegiate career. Lumley also stole 40 bases, including 17 as a senior. He was the MAAC Player of the Year this season.
Lumley is a left-handed hitting second baseman with good speed and a solid idea of the strike-zone. He has also played some shortstop and could get a look in centerfield, as well.
Round 34: Justin Jones, 2B, UNLV, Las Vegas, Nev.
Bio details: 5’9’’, 185, L/R, Birthdate: 03/07/1994
Analysis: Jones had a career year for the Runnin’ Rebels as a senior, batting .360/.424/.591 with nine homers in 54 games. He actually played five seasons for UNLV, but he was granted a medical redshirt for the 2015 season after suffering a season-ending left shoulder injury early in the year. Jones joins Payton Squier as UNLV players taken by the A’s this draft.
Jones attended baseball powerhouse Bishop Gorman in high school and was a standout performer there. He shortened his swing this season and found good results with the change. Jones has some power potential and he has always had a good eye at the plate.
Round 35: Cooper Goldby, C, Lewis-Clark State College, Lewiston, Ida.
Bio details: 5’9’’, 190, R/R, Birthdate: 01/18/1995
Analysis: Goldby joins the A’s after being selected by the organization originally as a 39th round pick coming out of high school. Goldby hails from Yuba City, Calif., where the A’s also found a catcher in the 2008 draft, Max Stassi. Goldby played two seasons at Yavapai before joining Lewis-Clark State, where he hit .308 as a junior.
An excellent catch-and-throw backstop, Goldby is a good athlete who moves well behind the plate. He has a strong throwing arm and could play some corner infield, as well as catch.
Round 36: Logan Farrar, OF, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Va.
Bio details: 5’11’’, 200, L/R, Birthdate: 04/16/1995
Analysis: Farrar was a solid four-year performer for VCU, hitting above .300 every year except his junior season. He had his best season as a senior, hitting .365/.450/.543 with eight homers and a 27:23 BB:K.
Farrar is a versatile defender who has played infield and outfield for the Rams. Farrar isn’t tall, but he is well-built and has good speed. He was a wide receiver in high school. He has a mature approach at the plate and a solid line-drive swing. Farrar has always hit well with wood in the summer leagues.
Round 37: Raymond Gil, 3B, Gulliver Prep School, Miami, Fla.
Bio details: 6’0’’, 200, R/R, Birthdate: 01/13/1999
Analysis: Gil is an athletic corner infielder with a power-hitter’s build who has a strong commitment to the University of Miami. Gil played his summer ball with the prestigious Orlando Scorpions squad that counts Brendan Rodgers among its alumni.
Gil profiles as a prototypical corner infielder who can hit for power and average. He has below average foot speed but moves well laterally and has a chance to stick at third. Gil is likely to attend Miami.
Round 38: Wil Hoyle, 2B, Charles E. Gordon HS, Durham, NC.
Bio details: 5’9’’, 160, S/R, Birthdate: 04/01/1999
Analysis: Hoyle hit .360 with a .520 OBP during his senior season at Jordan HS. Hoyle is a Duke commit who was a Rawlings-Perfect Game honorable mention All-American this season.
Hoyle has above-average speed and a line-drive swing from both sides of the plate. He can play second base, shortstop and third base, although he projects as a second baseman long-term. He is a good student who has a strong commitment to play at Duke.
Round 39: Haydn King, LHP, Archbishop Mitty HS, San Jose, Calif.
Bio details: 6’2’’, 195, L/L, Birthdate: 11/14/1998
Analysis: King, a local product from the South Bay, posted a 1.54 ERA in 140 innings for Archbishop Mitty during his high school career. The southpaw is a University of San Francisco commit.
King isn’t yet a hard-thrower (he averages 84-87 MPH with his fastball), but he has a build that projects to add velocity as he matures. He was on the Oakland A’s Area Code team in 2016. King has a good feel for his off-speed pitches. He is expected to honor his commitment to USF.
Round 40: Jacob Hoffman, SS, Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif.
Bio details: 6’0’’, 185, R/R, Birthdate: 01/28/1995
Analysis: Hoffman never actually appeared in a game for Stanford, but he already has some big league experience. The Engineering major was a data analytics intern for the A’s in 2015. Hoffman also interned for Microsoft during his Stanford career. He is a future front office candidate.
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