September was already important for Daulton Jefferies. As he was brought up to the Oakland A’s when rosters expanded, he essentially had a month to prove himself to the front office. Although he was getting a look in the bullpen, it would not have been a surprise to see Jefferies enter the rotation at some point before the end of the year.
That time is now. The A’s are putting Jefferies into their rotation, with James Kaprielian heading to the bullpen.
Daulton Jefferies getting his chance with Oakland A’s
This will not be the first time Jefferies has started at the major league level. His first two appearances were as a spot starter, although they did not go as well as either he or the A’s would have wanted. In those two outings, he allowed eight runs on eight hits, including three homers, and five walks over his seven innings, striking out four.
However, Jefferies has been better in a relief role. Since being recalled and staying with the A’s, he has allowed three runs on eight hits and a walk over his ten innings, striking out five batters. He may not exactly be dominant, but he has certainly done the job.
That performance in relief essentially fits his profile. His less than overpowering stuff is enhanced by his excellent control, allowing him to be more effective than one would expect. It is the type of profile that could play up as a starter, especially as he continues to develop.
Saturday’s outing may well end up as a piggyback situation. Jefferies has not thrown more than 54 pitches since being promoted to the majors, so it would not be a surprise to see Kaprielian work in tandem over the middle innings. Nonetheless, this is the opportunity that Jefferies has been waiting for.
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The Oakland A’s are inserting Daulton Jefferies into their starting rotation. He has a chance to prove he can be part of the 2022 rotation.