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Notebook: A’s Expose West Springfield’s Wahl in Next Week’s MLB Rule 5 Draft

By Joey Kamide, 12/05/17, 1:15PM EST

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Bobby wahl smallDecember 5 - A whirlwind 2017 that saw him earn his first promotion to the Major Leagues before a shoulder injury and subsequent surgery cut his debut short could end with Bobby Wahl changing organizations.

After acquiring outfielder Ramon Laureano from the Houston Astros just hours before the deadline to declare 40-man rosters, the Oakland Athletics designated the West Springfield High School graduate to Triple-A. The move exposes him in next week’s Rule 5 Draft, assuming he passes through waivers first.

A fifth-round pick out of the University of Mississippi in 2013, Wahl put together an impressive 2016 minor league campaign in which he compiled a 2.65 ERA and recorded 14 saves. He continued to pitch well at Triple-A Nashville to open last season, compiling a 1.93 ERA and three saves in his first eight appearances before earning a call-up by the A’s the first week in May.

His stint with Oakland, however, was limited to seven relief appearances when a shoulder strain landed him on the disabled list. He began a rehab stint in late July, but was shut down after just five appearances and in early August it was determined he would need thoracic outlet surgery to alleviate his shoulder discomfort.

Wahl, who led West Springfield to the Group AAA state championship, will now wait and see if he is either claimed off waivers or selected in the Rule 5 Draft on Dec. 14. Any team that claims or drafts him would have to add him to their 25-man roster for the entire 2018 season, though his health status as he recovers from surgery could dissuade teams from acquiring the 25-year-old.

The Rule 5 Draft was instituted by MLB to keep teams from stockpiling young players in the minor leagues who otherwise would be in the big leagues with other organizations. A recent local example of a player benefitting from the draft was Westfield grad Justin Bour, who was exposed by the Chicago Cubs in 2013 and was selected by the Miami Marlins.

Aerial View Gives Early Look at Paul VI’s New South Riding Campus

A photo taken from a helicopter flying above Paul VI Catholic’s future home was posted on the school’s Facebook page yesterday and gives gravity to how much bigger the school’s new campus will be.

The new campus, projected to open in time for the 2020-21 school year, will cost an estimated $60 million and will sit on 68 acres some 12 miles west of the current campus. Paul VI’s current campus sits on 12 acres in the City of Fairfax, where the school has existed since first opening its doors for the 1983-84 school year. The site was formerly the home of Fairfax High School from 1936-72.

The school’s baseball field will be located in the top right of the photo, with center field along the tree line. The Panthers’ new athletic facility will include a standalone track, turf rectangular field, cross country course and softball field. An indoor facility adjacent to the stadium will include two gymnasiums, a wrestling room, locker rooms, coaches offices and an athletic training room.

Several Local Match-ups on 2018 Collegiate Schedule

Four of the Washington, D.C. area’s Division I collegiate programs will meet in two games just 15 miles from each other on April 24, highlighting a slate of games pitting metro teams during the 2018 season.

On that Tuesday afternoon, George Mason will travel to play Maryland at 4 p.m., with Georgetown hosting George Washington at 7 p.m. at its home park, Shirley Povich Field in Rockville, MD. Also that day, two area Division III programs will meet when Marymount travels to Catholic for a 4 p.m. tilt.

Conference schedules are set and most programs have also completed their non-conference schedules as the season nears. George Mason will also play three-game weekend series against Georgetown and Atlantic-10 Conference foe George Washington. Georgetown will play home-and-home weekday series against both George Washington and Navy.

For a look at 2018 match-ups pitting local schools, see the graph below.

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Sponsor: Today’s notebook is sponsored by the Competitive Edge Athletic Performance Center in Woodbridge. For more information, visit the facility's' website here.

Photo of Bobby Wahl courtesy of Getty Images

Local College Match-Ups

Date Away Home Time
2/25 Marymount Gallaudet 2:00
2/27 Georgetown George Washington 2:30
3/21 Navy Georgetown 4:00
3/22 Gallaudet Catholic 3:30
3/24 Marymount Mary Washington 12:00
3/24 Marymount Mary Washington 3:00
4/11 Georgetown Navy 3:00
4/13 George Mason Georgetown 3:00
4/14 George Mason Georgetown 2:00
4/15 Georgetown George Mason 1:00
4/24 Marymount Catholic 4:00
4/24 George Mason Maryland 4:00
4/24 George Washington Georgetown 7:00
5/4 George Mason George Washington 3:00
5/5 George Mason George Washington 1:00
5/6 George Mason George Washington 12:00