1. The Bullpen
Aug 29, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Oakland Athletics relief pitcher Dan Otero (61) walks off the field after being relieved in the seventh inning against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
The bullpen was a major problem area for the Oakland Athletics this season. In the past, the Athletics have been known for having one of the strongest bullpens in the league and this year was not suppose to be any different. However, this season turned out to be quite the opposite. The pen turned out to be one of the worst in the Majors.
When looking back on it, it seems as though the A’s front office took the bullpen for granted. They did not do much during the 2014-2015 offseason to boost the relief staff even though they actually lost a lot of relievers by the time spring training rolled around this year. The only positive was that they added Clippard to the roster. However, with Sean Doolittle going down with an injury before the season even began, the Clippard acquisition turned into a neutral transaction rather than a positive one.
Oakland is definitely looking to boost their relief staff this offseason. One of the issues the Athletics’ bullpen dealt with was inconsistency. The A’s are going to need to stack their relief staff with some reliable relievers who perform well on a consistent basis. With Doolittle back for the 2016 season, hopefully the bullpen can brush the dirt off their shoulders and get back into the game.