Oakland Athletics Minor League Spotlight: Joey Wendle

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 30: Joey Wendle /

The Oakland Athletics have been stockpiling prospects since their abrupt exit from the AL Wild Card Game in 2014. Billy Beane is focused on rebuilding the franchise with an eye for younger talent.

The Oakland Athletics put everything on the table during the 2014 season.

Billy Beane made two blockbuster deals that summer in an effort to win a championship. Those blockbuster deals, however, cost Beane and the A’s plenty of young talent.

The A’s gambled their future for a chance at winning it all in 2014. The gamble did not pay off and the A’s were left picking up the pieces of yet another failed playoff run.

After the tough loss to Kansas City, Beane traded away several key veterans, including Brandon Moss.

In the Moss trade, the A’s received infielder Joey Wendle. Now 27, Wendle finds himself stuck in Triple-A Nashville despite solid numbers.

One reason why Wendle is currently sitting in Nashville is because the A’s have Franklin Barreto.

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Barreto, who was acquired in the trade that sent Josh Donaldson to Toronto, happens to be the team’s top-rated prospect.

The A’s acquired Barreto in the same offseason they got Wendle from Cleveland. Both Barreto and Wendle play the same position as well.

Looking at Barreto, he is clearly at the center of Oakland’s bright future. Wendle, meanwhile, could provide quality depth for Oakland.

Productive Numbers This Season

Barreto receives much of the spotlight, but Wendle has put together a solid season.  In 94 games this year with Nashville, Wendle is slashing .289/.328/.449 with 7 HR and 40 RBI.

In comparison, Barreto is slashing .280/.328/.445 with 13 HR and 41 RBI this year in Nashville. Looking at those numbers, it is possible to say that Wendle could provide quality depth at a position that is relatively thin for Oakland.

With rosters expanding next month, could Wendle find his way back to Oakland? In 28 games last season with Oakland, Wendle proved he could hold his own against major league pitching. Wendle hit .260 with a home run and 11 RBIs over 96 at-bats.

The bottom line is that Wendle should receive another look this September despite having Barreto standing in front of him. Wendle has delivered quality numbers in Triple-A since his arrival. He has the ability to provide excellent depth for the A’s moving forward.

He just needs the opportunity to do so.

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