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Grant Desme, a top Oakland A's prospect, gives up baseball for priesthood

January 22, 2010 | 11:21 am

Desme G Grant Grant Desme, the most valuable player of the Arizona Fall League, retired today to enter the priesthood.

Desme, 23, grew up in Bakersfield and attended Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where he won the Big West Conference triple crown. The outfielder advanced to the California League last season, then earned MVP honors in the prospect-laden AFL by hitting .315 with a league-leading 11 home runs and driving in 27 runs in 27 games.

The Oakland A's selected Desme in the second round of the 2007 draft, with a compensation pick awarded for the loss of Barry Zito. The A's signed him for a $432,000 bonus.

"We respect Grant's decision and wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors," Oakland General Manager Billy Beane said in a statement released by the A's.

-- Bill Shaikin

Photo: Grant Desme. Credit: Courtesy of Oakland Athletics