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On November 17, 2022 the Oakland Athletics claimed outfielder Brent Rooker off waivers from the Kansas City Royals.

So when spring training ended and the opening day roster was announced it was shocking that Rooker made the opening day roster over Cristian Pache. On social media many voiced their displeasure with the decision.

Pache seemingly earned a spot. His defense is outstanding, makes spectacular plays defensively, and hit well in the spring with a .302 batting average and eight rbi. Also, he was a key name in the Matt Olson trade to the Atlanta Braves.

The one impressive part to Rooker’s spring was that his on-base percentage was tremendous at .471, other than the great eye at the plate he did not hit for power, no home runs and was not driving in runs with three in 39 at-bats.

What made Pache expendable was the power potential of Rooker thoughand with Esteury Ruiz was locked in on the center field spot, so he became the odd man out.

In 2022 Rooker started the season in Triple-A for the San Diego Padres organization before getting traded to the Royals in August. He hit a combined 28 home runs, drove in 87 in 81 games, along with 27 doubles, a batting average of .289 and a OBP of .395.

While with the Minnesota Twins Triple-A team in 2021 he hit 20 home runs in 62 games. Pache rose through the minor league system of the Braves, yet the most home runs he hit were 11 in 2021, also in the same season he hit 15 doubles which was also a career-high for him.

Surprisingly for once a decision by the A’s has worked out well. Rooker has excelled in 2023 and currently leads the American League in home runs with 11, OBP at .428, slugging percentage .673, OPS 1.100, and he has driven in 29 which ranks seventh. Also, he has hit seven doubles.

Rooker continued his incredible start to the season with a walk-off three-run home run to beat the Texas Rangers 9-7 in 10 innings late Friday night. Major League Baseball even shared the clip on Twitter right after it happened. Not bad for someone that barely made the opening day roster.

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