The Oakland A’s are starting to give the prospects the reins. Shea Langeliers has been called up to the majors while Stephen Piscotty has been let go. As more players get injured or are otherwise removed from the roster, more of those prospects will get that look.
Now that Langeliers has been brought to the majors, it is time for a pitcher. Paul Blackburn has not only been placed on the Injured List, but is also out for the season after seeing a specialist regarding the inflammation in his right middle finger.
Oakland A’s can take advantage of Paul Blackburn injury
Blackburn’s injury does have some silver linings. He had proven to be a solid option in their rotation before his finger started bothering him over his last five outings, causing his overall numbers to suffer in the process. Now he can be shut down and ready for 2023 when the A’s will hope to show some progress with their younger players.
This injury also allows a chance for the A’s to look at another prospect. As is the case with Langeliers, they would have approximately six weeks to evaluate a younger arm at the major league level, getting a sense as to how close that prospect is to being able to be a part of the future.
In this case, it makes sense for the A’s to give Ken Waldichuk the call. The A’s top pitching prospect is on the cusp of the majors as it is, having performed well in Triple-A with the Yankees prior to his trade. Giving him these final six weeks, and approximately eight or nine starts, would provide some insight into how ready he is. Likewise, he would gain valuable experience that could help lead to a better showing in 2023 and beyond.
Such a move also would not matter in terms of service time, something that the A’s are keenly focused on. Enough time has passed where he would not be a Super Two for arbitration purposes, letting the A’s still have that third year at a minimal salary. That experience, while keeping all those years of team control, has to be tempting.
The Oakland A’s have an opening in the starting rotation with Paul Blackburn’s injury. It is time to bring up a top pitching prospect in his place.