Grandson of Walter "Bancy" Thomas, who played in the Negro Leagues and was teammates with Jackie Robinson and Satchel Paige in 1945 with the Kansas City Monarchs...Graduated from Bloomingdale (NC) HS…Played collegiately at the University of Florida where he studied civil engineering…Originally drafted in the 38th round of the 2012 First Year Player Draft by the Seattle Mariners (did not sign)...Drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the first round (No. 20 overall) of the 2015 First-Year Player Draft...Signed by Trevor Schaffer.
Spent the entire season on the Major League roster after being selected first overall in the Rule 5 Draft...Made his Major League debut on Opening Day 3/28 at NYY; starting at SS and hitting 9th...His 89 starts at shortstop were the third-most by a rookie in Orioles history (Cal Ripken, Jr. - 91 in 1982 and Ron Hansen - 149 in 1960)..Hit a season-high .379/.400/.655 (11-for-29) in 17 games in September; eight of his 23 RBI during the season came in September...Batted .284 (29-for-102) in 51 games in the second half, compared to hitting .166 (30-for- 181) in 69 games in the first half...Recorded a career-high three hits on 4/8 vs. OAK; also scored a career-high three runs • Collected his first Major League hit on 3/30 at NYY with a single in the sixth inning; also stole his first career base (third base in the sixth inning)...Recorded his first career RBI on 4/18 at TB; recorded his first multi-RBI game on 6/8 at HOU...Hit his first career home run on 5/22 vs. NYY off of CC Sabathia...Hit a game-tying home run in the ninth inning on 6/5 at TEX; his first career home run against right-handed pitching (Shawn Kelley).
Named a MiLB.com Organization All-Star...Named a Texas League Mid-Season All-Star while with Double-A Midland...Named the Texas League Player of the Week on 8/26: .400 (8-for-20), 1-2B, 1-3B, 2 HR, 6 R, 5 RBI, 6 G...Ranked third in the Texas League in hitting (.300)...His eight triples were tied with teammate Eli White for the most in the Texas League...Set career-highs in games (118), runs (68), hits (136), total bases (199), doubles (29), triples (8), walks (44), and steals (25)...Hit .379 (39-for-103) with 12 doubles, two triples, a home run, and 10 RBI in 27 games in May...Hit a combined .343 (36-for-105) with five doubles, three triples, three home runs, and 13 RBI in 28 games in August and September...Had a season-high 11-game hitting streak from 5/22-6/2...Recorded his first career multi-home run game on 8/23 at Corpus Christi...Stole three bases in a game twice (5/30 vs. Arkansas and 7/16 at San Antonio)...Hit safely in 11 consecutive home games from 7/20-8/14, batting .283 (13-for-46) with a double, 10 runs, and two RBI...Hit safely in nine-straight road games from 5/11-27, batting .472 (17-for-36), with five doubles, a triple, home run, and three RBI... Reached base safely in 13 consecutive road games from 5/6-27, hitting .400 (20-for-50), with eight doubles, a triple, home run, seven runs, and three RBI.
Spent most of his second professional season at Single-A Stockton where he batted .230 with three home runs and 31 RBI in 86 games…was promoted to Double-A Midland in September and went 5-for-15 (.333) with seven RBI in five regular season games with the RockHounds…combined to hit .235 in 91 games overall…was hit by a pitch 10 times and drew 39 walks for a .327 on-base percentage…stole 14 bases, which tied for eighth in the A's farm system…his .230 batting average at Stockton was fourth lowest in the California League…missed the first six weeks of the season after undergoing surgery for a torn meniscus on his left knee…hit .251 (63-for-251) with all three of his home runs against right-handed pitching compared to .192 (30-for-156) against left-handers…batted just .196 in 40 games at home with Stockton and went 0-for-3 in his lone home game with Midland…all three of his home runs came on the road…two came with runners on base…hit .211 with runners in scoring position at Stockton but went 5-for-6 (.833) in that situation with Midland for a .256 average with RISP overall…appeared exclusively at shortstop on defense where he played in 87 games and made 86 starts…committed 19 errors for a .948 fielding percentage…also went 2-for-12 (.167) in four games at designated hitter, all with Stockton… hit in every spot in the order except third through fifth and saw his most action with 31 games batting second…also hit .279 with a .362 on-base percentage in 27 games batting leadoff…was rated as the A's No. 9 prospect by Baseball America following the season.