Oakland Athletics’ Bullpen: Five Potential Offseason Targets

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Jul 30, 2015; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets pitcher Bobby Parnell (39) pitches against the San Diego Padres at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

New York Mets, RHP Bobby Parnell
29 years old, $3.7 million

Once a triple-digit fastball throwing flame-thrower, “Bullet Bob” Parnell is recently removed from a season-ending elbow injury he sustained in 2014 that required Tommy John Surgery. Coming back this year, his velocity is not where it once was, but still sits in the mid-90’s consistently. He hasn’t been great in 2015 either, currently holding a 4.32 ERA and an eye-popping 1.620 WHIP. Also, he has only struck out nine during his 16.2 innings, while surrendering 18 hits, but Parnell – much like Bastardo – has to compete with a great Mets bullpen. Plus, coming off injury hasn’t necessarily helped him look any more comfortable when he has gotten opportunities on the mound.

However, if you look at this man’s pure “stuff,” there is no reason not to take a chance. His rust is sure to wear off sooner than later, and now that he’s had some years –he’s in his eighth MLB season – he has learned how to pitch instead of just throw. Envisioning Parnell as a go-to guy in the seventh inning is a definite possibility and if the A’s would be willing to risk a roster spot on a bit of a wild card, he could easily prove his worth. While it is possible Parnell could be sought after on the market, I wouldn’t put his price tag out of Oakland range – which is not exactly high. Plus, hard throwers that aren’t completely erratic are difficult to come by, especially one with a bit of a discount.

Next: A Forgotten Feliz