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Oakland Athletics notes: Yonder Alonso an All-Star

Yonder Alonso is an All-Star, Zach Neal is back in the big leagues, the A’s were active on July 2nd, A.J. Puk recovered from a shaky start and more…

Yonder Alonso
Yonder Alonso is heading to the All-Star game. / Oakland Athletics

Oakland Athletics first baseman Yonder Alonso will be making his first All-Star appearance and it will come in front of friends and family in his hometown of Miami. The A’s slugger was named as a reserve for the 2017 American League squad. He is the A’s only All-Star representative.

Alonso is having a career-year with Oakland. In 232 at-bats, the left-handed hitter is batting .280/.377/.556 for an OPS+ of 156. He has a career-high 17 homeruns, third-most on the A’s behind Khris Davis (22) and Ryon Healy (19).

Alonso figures to be a popular name on the trade market in July. He is set to be a free agent at the end of the season.

Other Notes

— Despite being in the penalty for going over their allotted bonus pool last season, the Oakland A’s were active on July 2nd, according to BaseballAmerica‘s Ben Badler. Badler reports that the A’s agreed to terms with three players yesterday: SS Daniel Bautista, SS Johan Paulino and OF Jose Bonilla. Bautista is the son of former major leaguer Danny Bautista. Under the terms of the penalty, the A’s can only sign players to bonuses worth $300,000 or less. The A’s do have a large bonus pool available ($5.25 million), so Badler speculates they could trade some slots to teams looking for extra pool money.

— The A’s recalled right-hander Zach Neal from Triple-A Nashville on Sunday, optioning starter Jesse Hahn back to Triple-A. Hahn had been pitching well before he ran into the Houston Astros in his last two starts. Those two outings upped his ERA to 5.30. Hahn’s demotion is an indication that Paul Blackburn will get another turn through the A’s rotation after a strong big league debut on Saturday.

— Chris Bassitt (Tommy John) and Matt Chapman (infected knee) both rehabbed with the High-A Stockton Ports on Sunday. Bassitt started the game and went 1.2 scoreless innings. He walked two, struck-out two and didn’t allow a hit. It is his second rehab appearance since being shut down with elbow soreness on May 20. Chapman played third base and went 0-3 with a walk at the plate. All three official at-bats ended in strike-out. Brandon Bailey made his High-A debut and earned the win for the Ports. Pitching in relief of Bassitt, he allowed four runs on four hits and three walks in 4.1 innings. He struck-out eight. Bailey pitched better than that line-score looks. He had allowed just two runs through 4.1 innings before allowing the first four runners to reach in the seventh inning, which hurt his final line score. Brett Siddall hit his 12th homer of the season. He has five homers over his last 10 games.

— Kyle Twomey earned his first win as a member of the A’s organization in a 4-2 Beloit Snappers’ victory over the Wisconsin TimberRattlers. Twomey allowed two runs on four hits and two walks in five innings. He struck-out three. Jesus Zambrano threw the final four innings and earned the save. He didn’t allow a run and he gave up just two hits and two walks, striking out five. Kyle Nowlin hit his sixth homer of the season.

— Jack Meggs hit a three-run homer and drove-in four in the Vermont Lake Monsters’ 8-4 win over Lowell. Meggs had three hits and is batting .533 through five games. He already has two homeruns. Abdiel Mendoza threw five innings to earn the win. He allowed a run on six hits and two walks. He struck-out one.

— An error helped the Nashville Sounds walk-off against the Oklahoma City Dodgers on Sunday. Jaff Decker scored with two outs in the bottom of the ninth when former A’s utilityman Max Muncy threw away a Joey Wendle groundball. Decker had two hits and two walks in the game. Wendle had three hits — all doubles — before that game-winning groundout. Chris Smith had another strong start, allowing two runs in six innings. He struck-out six.

— The Midland RockHounds blew a one-run lead in the ninth in a 5-3 loss to the Tulsa Drillers. Tyler Ramirez had a hit and a walk in his Double-A debut. He was also hit by a pitch. A.J. Puk had a solid outing after not escaping the first inning in his last start. Puk gave up two runs on four hits and four walks in six innings. He struck-out four. All four walks came in Puk’s first three innings, three of them coming in the first inning.

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