Oakland A’s hope Hogan Harris can be hidden gem
The Oakland A’s added two players to their 40 man roster before the deadline on Tuesday, protecting them from the Rule V Draft.
One addition was not a surprise. Lawrence Butler had a strong showing during the Arizona Fall League and appears set to break out and move up the prospect ranks. The other addition was a surprise however as the A’s also added left handed pitcher Hogan Harris to the roster.
Hogan Harris knocking on door for Oakland A’s
On the surface, Harris would seem to be an odd choice. He will turn 26 years old on December 26 and has just 16 games of experience above A-ball, all of which came this season. Harris had missed most of the previous two years due to the pandemic and Tommy John surgery, getting roughed up during his time in the Arizona Fall League in 2021. He also struggled in his brief time at Triple-A this season.
But Harris also had a strong enough year to put him on the radar for major league organizations. He rocketed through the A’s system, pitching at three levels as he proved to be completely recovered. Harris posted a 3.42 ERA and a 1.276 WHiP in his 73.2 innings, striking out 105 batters with 43 walks while allowing just six homers. Most of that damage came in the hitter’s paradise known as Las Vegas however, as his numbers in High-A and Double-A were far more impressive.
There is work still to be done. Harris has struggled with his command at times and that was more pronounced in 2022. However, he also struck out 12.8 batters per nine innings, a mark that continued at Triple-A despite his struggles. And, as his command should improve as he moves further away from the procedure, Harris could make significant strides forward next year.
As it is, his profile could have generated interest in the Rule V Draft. A left handed pitcher who posted a 12.8 K/9 rate in the minors is going to get noticed. Even if his command is shaky, it is possible that a team would look to stash him in the bullpen and see if he could turn into a relief weapon. Ultimately, the possibility that the A’s could lose Harris was not a risk they wanted to take.
The Oakland A’s made a surprising decision to add Hogan Harris to the 40 man roster. A deeper look shows that move makes sense after all.