The Athletics drafted yet another catcher with their first-round selection in the 2022 MLB Draft on Sunday, but Daniel Susac’s unique talent and advanced leadership skills have proven he can succeed beyond his position behind the plate.
Susac, the younger brother of former San Francisco Giants catcher Andrew Susac, will return to Northern California after he was selected by Oakland 19th overall.
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The Sacramento native and former Jesuit High School standout played collegiate ball at the University of Arizona where he earned freshman All-American honors and was named the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year.
While it might look like the A’s are overloading on catchers, Susac’s talent was just too good to pass up. And given that Oakland already has Sean Murphy, Shea Langeliers and Tyler Soderstrom in the organization, it raises the question of what his long-term position could look like.
This spring, Susac really stepped up his production at the plate for Arizona. The 6-foot-4 right-handed hitter posted a .366 batting average with 12 home runs and 62 RBI in 64 games with the Wildcats this season. He tallied 23 walks, 19 doubles and two triples for a .429 on-base percentage and a .582 slugging percentage.
As a former high school quarterback, he brings a different type of athleticism to Oakland all while improving his leadership skills on the diamond.
"Best word to describe me is ‘leader,’” Susac said on Sunday. “That’s the way I try to embody myself as a player. I’m not only going to try to get the most out of myself but I’m going to try to get the most out of all my teammates. I’m gonna bring a great bat while also being a great defensive player. I take pride in trying to be a well-rounded player.”
The A's could use a youthful leader in the clubhouse, and that's exactly what Susac hopes to be in the Town.