A's to promote pitching prospect Sonny Gray

Sonny Gray called up for bullpen duty

A's to promote pitching prospect Sonny Gray
July 9, 2013, 5:30 pm
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Sonny Gray is 8-5 with a 2.81 ERA over 16 Triple-A starts this year. (AP)

Top pitching prospect Sonny Gray is joining the A's, manager Bob Melvin confirmed to reporters in Pittsburgh after an initial report by the San Francisco Chronicle.

The corresponding roster move is to send right-hander Dan Straily back to Triple-A Sacramento, despite Straily winning his last two starts, including Tuesday night's 2-1 A's victory over the Pirates. Straily told reporters he knew he was headed back to the minors even if he threw a perfect game.

The A's do not need a fifth starter until after the All-Star break, on July 23 on Houston, and Gray, 23, has never pitched out of the bullpen in his professional career. Still, there is the possibility of All-Star selection Bartolo Colon, who already served a 50-game suspension last season for a failed drug test, facing discipline after the break for his reportedly being associated with the PED-affiliated Biogenesis clinic in Florida.

Gray, meanwhile, is 8-5 with a 2.81 ERA in 102 1/3 innings over 16 starts with 107 strikeouts, 34 walks and a 1.27 WHIP in Sacramento.

"Sonny's an electric arm," catcher Stephen Vogt, who caught Gray in Sacramento, said when he was with the A's last month. "He's the real deal. He's got great stuff. He's got three pitches. He's still developing his command a little bit but his stuff is there. He's going to be something really special."

Gray, the A's top pick in the 2011 first-year-play draft, No. 18 overall, will be the A's second first-round draft pick to join Oakland this week as infielder Grant Green was called up Monday. The right-handed Gray was scheduled to start for the River Cats at Colorado Springs Tuesday night but was scratched. Instead, Chris Resop took his spot.

Green, the club's top pick in 2009, started at second base in the A's series opener at Pittsburgh.

The A's could also simply be taking stock of their minor league talent with the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline approaching.

[REWIND: Grant Green earns promotion]

The A's could also simply be taking stock of their minor league talent with the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline approaching.

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