Andrew Hutchinson has been a multimedia reporter for the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette since 2014.
Dunn trade affects two former Hogs
Former Arkansas infielder Andy Wilkins was named the International League Batter of the Week for the period of July 14-20, 2014. (photo courtesy of Charlotte Knights)
A pair of former Arkansas baseball players were affected by the trade that sent slugger Adam Dunn from the Chicago White Sox to the Oakland Athletics Sunday.
The Athletics sent minor-league pitcher Nolan Sanburn, who was a relief pitcher for the Razorbacks on their 2012 College World Series team, to Chicago in exchange for Dunn, a former All-Star.
Sanburn has spent all season at high-A Stockton, where he has appeared in 42 games out of the bullpen. He is 3-1 with six saves and a 3.28 ERA in 71 1/3 innings pitched.
With Dunn gone, the White Sox called up infielder Andy Wilkins, who played on Arkansas' 2009 College World Series team, to fill the hole in the lineup. He will make his major league debut Sunday against the Tigers, starting at first base and batting seventh for the White Sox.
Primarily a first baseman, Wilkins will most likely see action as a designated hitter, rotating with former All-Star Paul Konerko, as well as some at first base, when star rookie Jose Abreu gets a day off.
Wilkins has been one of the best power hitters in the minor leagues this season. Playing for triple-A Charlotte, he has a .293 batting average with 30 home runs and 85 RBI. His home run total leads the International League, while he is tied for first in the league in RBIs.
In July, he was named the International League Player of the Month after batting .431 with 12 home runs and 35 RBI, including a stretch in which he hit 10 home runs in nine games.