OAKLAN — The A’s called up four minor-leaguers Sunday, including outfielder Michael Choice and infielder Jemile Weeks as major league rosters expand to 40 for the final month of the season.
Choice, 23, is rated one of the A’s top prospects, and Weeks was a rookie of the year contender in 2011 who has seemed to fall out of favor with the club.
“It’s a nice reward for a guy that’s had a good year and is a prominent player in our organization,” A’s manager Bob Melvin said of Choice. “There are times you reward people, there are times you bring them in to be a piece (of the equation), and he’s both.”
The A’s selected Choice with the 10th pick of the 2010 Major League draft. Choice played in 132 games for Triple-A Sacramento this season, where he batted .302, with 14 home runs and 89 RBI.
“I felt like I had a pretty good year, so I definitely thought there was a possibility that it would happen,” Choice said.
Melvin said Choice, Weeks, shortstop Andy Parrino and left-handed pitcher Pedro Figueroa were called up to help out the final month-plus of the season and not just to get a taste of the majors.
“All these guys are here for a reason,” Melvin said. “How much playing time they get, I’m not sure at this point.”
Choice played all three outfield spots during spring training. Melvin said he likely will use Choice at one of the corner outfield spots against left-handers.
Choice said he became a more consistency player this season, which enabled him to “just go out there and play and be comfortable.”
His parents, wife and son are scheduled to be at the A’s game Monday. It’s unclear whether Choice will be in the lineup that day.
Weeks and Parrino are versatile enough to play infield and outfield, though Weeks is a natural second baseman and Parrino a shortstop.
Weeks once was one of the A’s top prospects. However, his batting average dipped from .303 in 2011 to .221 in 2012, when he got demoted.
He spent all season with Sacramento this year and batted .271. He also stole 17 bases in 19 attempts, walked 80 times for a .376 on-base percentage. Overall, he focused on honing his all-around game.
“It’s refreshing,” Weeks said of his return. “I’ve been gone awhile. I put a lot of work in down there. … I’m just trying to affect the game in any type of way I can.”
Figueroa likely will be used against certain left-handers and, at times, for as long as an inning, Melvin said.
“Figueroa has a 97 mph fastball that can make some lefties uncomfortable,” Melvin said.
Minor-league catcher Luke Montz was designated for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Choice.