A's prospect Matt Chapmandisplayed some of the pop that has made his Spring Training batting practice rounds must-see action, belting an opposite-field two-run homer Tuesday in Cactus League action. Chapman, Oakland's No. 6 prospect, also showed why he's a two-way threat with a great play at third base in the
A's prospect Matt Chapmandisplayed some of the pop that has made his Spring Training batting practice rounds must-see action, belting an opposite-field two-run homer Tuesday in Cactus League action. Chapman, Oakland's No. 6 prospect, also showed why he's a two-way threat with a great play at third base in the bottom half of the first inning against the Rockies.
"It's great to be able to contribute and help the team," Chapman told reporters after the game. "Getting an experience like this is definitely a confidence-booster. When you play against guys that have played in the big leagues for this long, it's nice to have a little bit of success to take some momentum into the season wherever I go. That's out of my control. All I can control is showing up every day, working hard and trying to get better."
Chapman is likely to open the season with Double-A Midland, but he's making a name for himself in big league camp this year. The infielder has five hits in 19 at-bats in the Cactus League and his three homers are tied for the team lead with Stephen Vogt. Chapman's two-run shot Tuesday came off veteran Rockies left-hander Jorge De La Rosa.
Meanwhile, A's top pitching prospect Sean Manaea (No. 68 overall) fired two scoreless innings to lower his spring ERA to 1.35. The left-hander allowed two hits and struck out three in his third appearance.
More notable performances by top prospects
• White Sox No. 29 prospectMatt Davidson hit a walk-off homer to beat the Dodgers. It was the second homer of the game for Davidson and his fourth of the spring. No. 28 prospectJason Coats also went deep for his third homer in the Cactus League.
• MLBPipeline.com's No. 8 overall prospectDansby Swanson came off the bench for the Braves and ripped a run-scoring double in his only at-bat. It was the shortstop's second double and second RBI in Grapefruit League action. Braves No. 11 prospectMallex Smith also contributed a pinch-hit single and a run scored against the Tigers.
• For the Rangers, baseball's No. 9 overall prospectJoey Gallo crushed a two-run homer, his third of the spring, and went 2-for-2 against the Indians to raise his Cactus League average to .333.
Gallo's fifth-inning blast off Tom Gorzelanny caught the attention of Rangers slugger Prince Fielder, who also went deep Tuesday.
"I'm glad I hit one hard, but Champ ... Joey, that was amazing," Fielder told reporters after the game. "We gave up cheering while it was flying because that was too far. That was amazing. Joey is the Champ. That's pretty far, and to do it off a side-arming left-hander. ... First pitch, that's why we have him."
• Dodgers No. 12 prospectAustin Barnes hit his fourth homer in the Cactus League, a two-run shot off White Sox left-hander Dan Jennings. For Barnes, it was the catcher's third homer in his last four games.
• Reds No. 17 prospect Blake Trahan went 2-for-2 to raise his Cactus League average to .462. The shortstop also stole his first base of the spring.
• Orioles No. 17 prospectJoey Rickard started in center field and went 2-for-4 with a run scored and a stolen base out of the leadoff spot.
• Astros No. 24 prospectChris Devenski pitched two scoreless innings in relief against the Nationals. The right-hander struck out two and allowed one hit, lowering his Grapefruit League ERA to 1.50 in the process.
• Cubs No. 19 prospectRyan Williams fired three scoreless innings against the Padres, scattering four hits and striking out two. He's yet to allow an earned run in three appearances in the Cactus League. No. 7 prospectJeimer Candelario started at third base and went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI.
**Austin Laymance** is a reporter for MLB.com.