GOODYEAR, Ariz. -– Highly touted first base prospect Matt Olson and bullpen candidate Fernando Rodriguez were among seven players the A’s reassigned to minor league camp Sunday.
Also sent down were second baseman Joey Wendle, catcher Carson Blair and pitchers Brad Mills, Ryan Verdugo and Kevin Whelan.
Olson, who turns 21 next week, is the A’s No. 1 prospect according to mlb.com and No. 2 prospect by Baseball America. He hit .195 with one homer and four RBI in 17 games. He’s slated to begin the season with Double-A Midland.
Rodriguez gave up his first runs of the spring Sunday in his sixth appearance. The Reds’ Josh Satin delivered a walkoff single off him in the bottom of the ninth to beat the A’s 4-3.
Wendle, 24, acquired from Cleveland over the winter for Brandon Moss, made a major impression with the coaching staff in his first spring with Oakland. He’s likely to begin the season with Triple-A Nashville, but manager Bob Melvin raved about Wendle when asked about him Sunday morning.
“He comes better than advertised,” Melvin said. “We heard early on that his bat was ahead of his glove. He’s got a nice bat but his glove comes with him. If you watch him, he hangs in on double plays, gets rid of it quickly. Side to side he moves really well. He gets to balls up the middle in a hurry. He’s an all-around player. He’s going to be a really good player.”