A’s hope there’s more growth left for Jurickson Profar


Jurickson Profar was the No. 1 prospect in baseball at one point, before a shoulder injury robbed him of two years of playing time in the majors, a setback from which he seems to have just recovered completely in 2018. The Rangers, however, have no real spot for him at this point, with established regulars at short and second, and could only play him at third, where his arm would be a weakness, or left field, where his bat likely wouldn’t make him more than an average player. That made him available in trade this offseason, with Texas shipping him to Oakland in a three-team deal that gained them some upper-level pitching depth while sending a draft pick to Tampa Bay.

Profar returned from his layoff in 2016, but didn’t hit well after a hot start, and spent most of 2017 in Triple-A, walking more than he struck out on the way to a .383 OBP at age 24. He finally regained regular playing time in 2018, moving all over the infield, producing a .254/.335/.458 line that was good for a .341 wOBA and 108 wRC+, above league average and enough for 2 rWAR/2.9 fWAR even though he played 24 games at first base (where replacement level is higher).

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