Apr 17, 2022; Denver, Colorado, USA; Chicago Cubs left fielder Clint Frazier (77) makes a catch for an out in the fifth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Once upon a time, Clint Frazier seemed to be destined for stardom. The fifth overall pick in the 2013 MLB Draft by the then-Indians, he was a consensus top 100 prospect in 2014, 2016, and 2017. However, after being sent to the Yankees as part of the Andrew Miller deal, he was unable to establish himself as a major league option. Eventually, the Yankees cut ties, allowing him to enter free agency for the first time.
Frazier eventually signed with the Cubs, but that stint was a disaster. He appeared in just 19 games due to appendicitis and made more headlines for trashing the Yankees than his play on the diamond. Finally, on Friday, the Cubs had enough, designating him for assignment.
Despite having spent part of six seasons in the majors, Frazier is still just 27 years old and has three more years of team control left. With his relative youth and former top prospect pedigree, it would make sense for a team to take a chance on him to see if he can be a viable major leaguer. The Oakland A’s would be the perfect fit.
The A’s outfield appears to be set. Chad Pinder, Cristian Pache, and Ramon Laureano have their starting roles locked in for now. Luis Barrera is the fourth outfielder. Eventually, when Stephen Piscotty returns, he will have a spot on the roster. The outfield, despite the A’s issues offensively, does not seem to have any openings.
But that could change at the trade deadline. Pinder is a free agent after this season and is likely to be in demand due to his versatility. Laureano will attract attention as several teams are looking for a centerfielder. Piscotty may not be around after the deadline even if he is not traded as the A’s could cut bait.
This would leave plenty of opportunities for players to establish themselves. Frazier has not had much of a chance to do that, with his most extensive playing time coming in the pandemic shortened 2020 season. Injuries and the Yankees’ strange refusal to give him a chance (or trade him for that matter) have stunted his ability to prove himself.
Maybe all Frazier needs is a chance. A new beginning on a team without pressure, where he can be himself and is able to focus on his game. The A’s are not going anywhere in the standings any time soon and would be the perfect place for him to attempt to tap into the talent that made him a top prospect.
source: White Cleat Beat