With MLB’s Winter Meetings occurring in less than a few weeks the A’s still have a lot to accomplish this offseason. With a crowded infield, Brett Anderson trade rumors, and the need for another starter and bullpen arm, the A’s have a lot to work on before Spring Training 2014 (although they do accomplish trades around that time i.e. Jed Lowrie). The one thing that is clear is the A’s need to add one more player to their 40 man roster. They are currently at 39 players with the addition of Raul Alcantara recently as mentioned by our editor Sean Davis. This leads to the question, who will be the 40th man? Here are some possibilities.
October 10, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Athletics starting pitcherBartolo Colon
(40, left) talks to Detroit Tigers designated hitterVictor Martinez
(41, right) before game five of the American League divisional series playoff baseball game at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
The most likely scenario is the resigning of starting pitcher Bartolo Colon. Colon had one of his best seasons as a professional last season leading a young A’s pitching staff as their Ace. With nearly 20 wins and an ERA that sat around 3.00 Colon had a season that led to GM Billy Beane mentioning resigning Colon for another season. He would probably be given a base salary more than the $3 million from last season, but he is still a cheap option. With the speculation that the A’s and Colon’s agents have met more than once is a sign they are trying to get something done.
The next most likely scenario is a trade (presumably Brett Anderson, Jed Lowrie, or Alberto Callaspo). The A’s have pieces such as those mentioned that can bring back real value, possibly even some that can help at the Major League level relatively quickly. Those types of trades have happened regularly over the past few seasons including the Gio Gonzalez trade and the Andrew Bailey trade. It remains to be seen what the A’s are looking for in trades, but teams like the Toronto Blue Jays and Kansas City Royals have been mentioned in trade talks with the A’s recently.
The last possible addition to the 40 man roster is a relief pitcher. The A’s saw Grant Balfour, Pat Neshek, and others move on to greener (or less green) pastures. That leaves a big gap in the back end of the bullpen. A reliever addition is certainly not out of the question, especially with the large quantity and cheap price currently. Regardless of what happens this offseason the A’s will add a reliever in some capacity.
The A’s have a lot of options in suring up their roster. Trades, free agency, in house, all are viable options to fill out the 40 man roster. It will be interesting to see how the next few weeks will play out especially with the Winter Meetings rapidly approaching. Beane has made multiple moves at these meetings and with a lot of items on the wish list keep your eye out for some big time action in mid December.