Oakland A’s 2016 first-round pick A.J. Puk continues to reach new heights with each start. On Saturday, Puk established career-highs in innings pitched, strike-outs and pitches thrown with a 6.2 inning outing against the Lancaster JetHawks. He struck-out 12 and threw 98 pitches, 65 for strikes in the Ports’ 9-3 win over the JetHawks.
Puk didn’t walk a batter until his final inning, when he walked two. He was charged with two of his three earned runs in that final inning. Puk allowed only four hits. Over his last three starts, Puk has allowed just five hits in 16.1 innings. During that stretch, he has struck-out 27. For the season, Puk has 77 strike-outs in 51.1 innings.
Armando Ruiz joined the Ports from Extended Spring Training before the game and he was solid in his debut, tossing 2.1 scoreless innings. He struck-out four, didn’t walk a batter and he allowed three hits.
Sean Murphy had a huge game at the plate in support of Puk. He had three hits, including his fifth homer of the season. He also walked and scored three runs. Murphy is now batting .297 with an 868 OPS. Branden Cogswell also had three hits, and Brett Siddall and Skye Bolt each had two-hit games. Bolt also walked. His OPS is up to 826.
Before the game, the A’s released Matthew Sergey, who had been on the 7-day DL. Sergey made eight appearances this season and posted a 3.48 ERA with 11 strike-outs in 10.1 innings.
— A night after scoring seven runs in the first inning and 12 overall, the Nashville Sounds were kept quiet in a 5-1 loss to the Iowa Cubs. Former A’s prospect Seth Frankoff was outstanding in his start for the I-Cubs. He allowed only a solo homerun by Matt Chapman in 5.2 innings. Chapman’s homer was his 12th of the season. Corey Walter went six innings but got the loss, allowing five runs on eight hits. Matt Olson was a late scratch from the line-up after hitting two homeruns on Friday night.
— The Midland RockHounds and the Beloit Snappers both had their games suspended by rain. Both games will be completed on Sunday before they start their regularly scheduled Sunday games.
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An interview with Oakland A's 2019 23rd-round pick Jack Cushing.
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Oakland A's affiliates went 3-1 on Opening Night.
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The Oakland A's released several minor league pitchers this week.