Neuse is 3-for-7 with two walks and two strikeouts through two games with Triple-A Nashville. It's a testament to how advanced Neuse's bat is that the A's assigned him to Triple-A after just 22 games at High-A and 18 games at Double-A. He probably profiles best as a designated hitter in the big leagues, but may be able to hit enough to fit just fine in that role.
Neuse went 2-for-3 with five RBI from a three-run home run and a two-run single while also drawing a walk and scoring once in Sunday's 14-0 Cactus League win over the White Sox. Just another scoreboard-busting performance for the 23-year-old, who's opened eyes this spring with five homers and 15 RBI over 49 plate appearances. Neuse similarly smoked Double-A pitching in a modest stint at Midland last season, posting a .373/.427/.433 line over 75 plate appearances after arriving in a five-player deal with the Nationals last July. While he's likely to start 2018 with the RockHounds, a fairly prompt ascension to Triple-A Nashville is certainly conceivable, and an eventual major-league callup isn't completely out of the question, either.
Neuse has impressed the Oakland field staff so far this spring, Julian McWilliams of The Athletic reports. While Neuse has seen time at third base, second base and shortstop, he openly admits that "hitting" is his favorite position to play. This works perfectly for the A's, as it's easy to see Neuse slotting in at DH in the not-so-distant future, given the other young infielders who figure to be part of this core. He hit a home run over 450 feet in Tuesday's game against the Indians, but it's not his impressive strength and raw power that has impressed the A's. "Anybody can go up there and hit 60 mph batting practice (pitches) and hit home runs; you better be able to do that. But it's the discipline of the approach he has in batting practice (that's impressed us)," manager Bob Melvin said. "It's hitting the ball the other way, driving the ball in the gaps. That's a big part of his game." Neuse is a top-100 prospect for dynasty leagues, even if he isn't ranked that way on real-life lists. After impressing in the Arizona Fall League and now early in big-league camp, Neuse appears to be on the fast track. He could head back to Double-A to open the year, but should spend the bulk of 2018 at Triple-A, potentially earning a callup in the second half.
Neuse has been granted a non-roster invitation to the Athletics' spring training, Jane Lee of MLB.com reports. Neuse was acquired from the Nationals in 2017 as part of the return for relievers Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson. The young third baseman immediately flashed his hit tool with the A's, posting a gaudy wRC+ of 203 with High-A Stockton and a wRC+ of 143 with Double-A Midland. Neuse is a relatively attractive dynasty asset and could potentially make his big-league debut this upcoming season.
Neuse was traded Sunday from the Nationals to the Athletics along with reliever Blake Treinen and prospect Jesus Luzardo in exchange for relievers Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reports. The 22-year-old Neuse, the 58th overall pick in the 2016 first-year player draft, had been seeing time at third base and shortstop in the South Atlantic League this season and was batting .291/.349/.469 over 321 plate appearances. Regarded as a polished college bat coming out of Oklahoma, Neuse could move up the minor-league ladder relatively quickly with his new organization, with an assignment to the California League not out of the question before the end of 2017. He may end up being groomed as a third baseman for the Athletics with Franklin Barreto profiling as the team's top long-term option at shortstop.