Shea Langeliers was an intriguing prospect when he was acquired by the Oakland A’s. He had been part of the top 100 prospect lists, someone whose glove and pop seemingly indicated that he would be a solid major league catcher. His breakout 2021 season led to the hope that he could be more than a reserve at the position, but he still needed to prove that was more than a one year spike in production.
Mission accomplished thus far. Langeliers has emerged as one of the top prospects in the game with his torrid start to the 2022 campaign, potentially putting the A’s in a great spot with their abundance of riches at the position.
Oakland A’s might need to make room for Shea Langeliers soon
Langeliers does not seem to have much left to prove at Triple-A. He had produced a .285/.384/.577 batting line in his 151 plate appearances entering Thursday, belting 11 homers and five doubles. Additionally, Langeliers is drawing more walks and making more consistent contact at the plate, helping fuel this offensive explosion.
At the same time, Langeliers does not have a clear path to playing time at the major league level. Sean Murphy may not be lighting the universe on fire in terms of batting average, but he is hitting for power and is a Gold Glove caliber backstop.
In theory, either Langeliers or Murphy could transition to another position. The problem is that neither player has appeared anywhere aside from catcher as a professional. Langeliers has two games of experience in left and eight at first in college, while Murphy spent a total of nine games at first during his own collegiate career. Considering that the A’s have need of a first baseman, it would not be a surprise to see one of that duo transition to a new position.
This could also work itself out without a change in position. Murphy had been rumored to be on the trade block during the offseason as the A’s were not overly sold on his bat. He would still be valuable now given his pop and stellar defense even if the batting average is lagging behind. Langeliers may force the A’s to explore that option as well.
Shea Langeliers is pounding on the door to the majors. There will come a point when the Oakland A’s have no choice but to answer.