The Athletics assigned right-hander Zach Neal outright to Triple-A Las Vegas after he cleared waivers, per the team’s transaction log. Neal, who was designated for assignment on Friday, does have the ability to reject the assignment and opt for free agency if he chooses.
The 34-year-old Neal appeared in a pair of games for the A’s and allowed three runs on four hits and no walks with three strikeouts through 3 1/3 innings. It’s his second stint with the A’s, with whom he also spent the 2016-17 seasons. Since departing the first time around, Neal pitched one big league inning with the Dodgers and spent three years in the rotation for the Seibu Lions of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball.
Through 89 Major League innings, Neal carries a 5.06 ERA with one of the lowest strikeout rates in MLB (11%) but also one of the best walk rates (1.9%). He’s a ground-ball pitcher who’s struggled recently in Triple-A both with the A’s and with the Rockies (in 2022). The Athletics’ rotation and bullpen have been a mess in 2023, with both groups ranking dead-last in the Majors in terms of ERA (7.26 for the starters, 6.49 for the relievers).
Oakland also currently has eight pitchers on the injured list: Paul Blackburn, Mason Miller, Drew Rucinski, Freddy Tarnok, Zach Jackson, Dany Jimenez, Trevor May and Kirby Snead. Given that huge slate of injuries and, more generally, the complete lack of definition on the pitching staff, Neal could work his way back to the big league roster if he pitches even decently in the upper minors.
i like al conin
What a visual with all those empty seats.
Neil, hang on! Plenty of opportunities with a A’s young team that is in total state of flux due to that endless stadium saga… Joke…
This is old news. Neal accepted assignment last week and has been pitching for Las Vegas.
A’s top 5 pitching prospects (overall rank listed first) by MLB.com
#2 Mason Miller (injured after hitting MLB and looking like an ace-tier SP)
#5 Freddy Tarnok (injured, has no innings in 2023 so far)
#8 Luis Morales (injured, has no innings in 2023 so far)
#11 Gunnar Hoglund (injured, has no innings in 2023 so far)
#13 JT Ginn (has the yips, cant throw strikes at all in 2023)
And Scott Emerson still has a job.
They targeted pitching in all their trades and so far only JP Sears has been decent, but not more than a back rotation guy. Once this team leaves for Vegas I won’t care about them or baseball anyways.
At this point I’m actively rooting against them, I hope they continue to be an embarrassment to professional sports and their new deal brings greater scrutiny to MLB’s anti-competitive practices exemption.
I’d feel bad for the players but the A’s seem like a pretty good destination for waiver claims and failing prospects looking for one more chance to make it in the bigs.
Did he coach them ?
Well, on the positive side he play a team that is winning more games. Meh. What can I say.
5IP, 4 hits 1 R 5K’s no bb.. started 2 days ago for Vegas.. Will be back soon. throws STRIKES
The MLB outrighted the A’s to Las Vegas. The A’s have enough service time to be claimed by other cities, depending on how many taxpayer dollars form their new contract.