Originally selected out of Wright State University in the third round of the 2016 MLB Draft, Oakland Athletics catching prospect Sean Murphy reached Double-A Midland in the Texas League in 2017, splitting time between there and High-A Stockton of the California League and slashing .250/.313/.410/.723 in 356 combined at-bats over 98 games. In that span between both full-season leagues (Murphy’s first crack at the full-season grind), the 6’3”, 215-lb. catcher hit 18 doubles and 13 home runs, while walking 32 times and suffering 67 strikeouts.
After the year, the Oakland Athletics sent the 23-year-old (DOB: October 10, 1994) catcher to the Arizona Fall League to play for the Mesa Solar Sox, and it’s there that Baseball Census saw Sean Murphy play multiple times, showing off his good defensive skills behind the plate and an exceptionally strong arm. Below, you’ll find our full Sean Murphy scouting report, including game video, tool grades, and projection notes.
Sean Murphy Scouting Report, Oakland Athletics — 2017
Dates observed in 2017: Arizona Fall League
Sean Murphy Scouting Report, Oakland Athletics — 2017 Game Video
Sean Murphy Scouting Report — Notes, Analysis & Projection
Somewhat flat footed with long, lanky limbs and a tall build, Sean Murphy doesn’t really look like the stereotypical stocky, athletic catcher you might expect to see on a prospect list this winter. And yet he gets it done behind the plate for the Oakland Athletics, having moved quickly to Double-A and then acquitting himself well as a defensive standout at the Arizona Fall League last month with Mesa. Just 121 games into his professional career, Murphy’s bat is still somewhat untested, though. It’s undoubtedly solid enough to help him stick at least in a bench/platoon role, but if his power profile is for real like Stockton suggested, he’ll push his way past that projection and fight for an everyday gig at ceiling with an impressive ability to hit the ball in the air with authority.
A good find for the Oakland Athletics out of Wright State, Sean Murphy might start 2018 back in Double-A Midland, where he’ll need to adjust after a tough time down the stretch there this past summer, but his polish and tools should have him in Triple-A Nashville by the end of 2018. Expect him to be in the thick of a conversation for a big league role of some sort in 2019.
Overall Future Potential (Future Value): Average everyday regular at ceiling with good glove, great arm, power profile at the plate; platoon/bench floor with sneaky pop in bat if tools fall short (50)
MLB ETA: 2019
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