Olson, Puk named A's Prospects of the Year

Olson, Puk named A's Prospects of the Year

OAKLAND -- Matt Olson finished with 24 home runs in his rookie season for the A's, making it easy to forget he spent the bulk of the 2017 campaign in the Minors.

"It's a number a lot of guys would take over 162," A's manager Bob Melvin said.

The 25-year-old first baseman, who added 23 homers at the Triple-A level, teamed up with left-hander A.J. Puk to earn A's Prospects of the Year honors.

Olson, anointed Player of the Year, played 79 of his games with Nashville, compared to 59 with Oakland, before his season was abruptly halted last week because of a hamstring injury -- putting an end to a remarkable run.

Athletics Prospects of the Year
2017 Matt Olson A.J. Puk
2016 Ryon Healy Daniel Gossett
2015 Chad Pinder Dillon Overton
Year Hitter Pitcher

The young slugger homered nine times over his final 14 games and 16 times since Aug. 27, including a stretch of five consecutive games with a homer for an Oakland rookie record. He joined Giancarlo Stanton (2010) as only players in past 30 years to hit 20 or more homers in the Minors and Majors in same season.

"It's pretty remarkable," Melvin said. "It's exciting to think about what he could potentially do over a full season."

MLB Tonight on Matt Olson

Each team's Hitting and Pitching Prospects of the Year were chosen by the MLBPipeline.com staff. To receive consideration, players must have spent at least half the year in the Minors, appeared on the team's Top 30 Prospects list and played the entire year in the organization.

Puk, the A's first-round pick of the 2016 Draft, split his time between Class-A Advanced Stockton and Double-A Midland during his first full professional season, combining to go 6-10 with a 4.03 ERA en route to being named Pitcher of the Year. He posted a 3.69 ERA in 14 games (11 starts) for Stockton before earning a midseason promotion and pitching to a 4.36 ERA with Midland.

The 6-foot-7 southpaw, ranked by MLB Pipeline as the organization's No. 2 prospect, collected 184 strikeouts in 125 innings. Puk, 22, is on pace to make his Major League debut in 2019, if not sooner.

Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.