Oakland Athletics: Breaking down an extension for Mark Canha

MESA, ARIZONA - MARCH 10: Mark Canha #20 of the Oakland Athletics hits a RBI double against the Kansas City Royals during the first inning of the MLB spring training game at HoHoKam Stadium on March 10, 2020 in Mesa, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
MESA, ARIZONA - MARCH 10: Mark Canha #20 of the Oakland Athletics hits a RBI double against the Kansas City Royals during the first inning of the MLB spring training game at HoHoKam Stadium on March 10, 2020 in Mesa, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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There has been some speculation that the Oakland Athletics could look to extend utility man Mark Canha. Such a move may not be in their best interests.

At this point, Major League Baseball has frozen rosters and banned any extension discussions. However, that does not mean that speculation about potential extensions has come to an end. For the Oakland Athletics, there are several intriguing players that could be worth such discussions.

One player that has been mentioned as a possible extension candidate is utility man Mark Canha. He has served a valuable role over the past two years, seeing extensive action as the A’s fourth outfielder and backup option at first base. In those two seasons, he has played in a combined 248 games despite his nominal status as a bench option.

Canha put together his best major league season in 2019. He produced a .273/.396/.517 batting line, hitting 16 doubles and 26 homers in his 497 plate appearances. Canha also displayed a solid batting eye, drawing 67 walks while striking out just 107 times.

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He certainly fits the profile of an A’s player. Canha can play multiple positions, giving manager Bob Melvin plenty of flexibility in setting a lineup. His excellent batting eye, ability to make hard contact, and solid power make him an ideal member of the roster.

With the A’s having two more years of team control, it is understandable as to why an extension would seemingly make sense. However, Canha has already turned 31 years old, and would be 33 at the time he would hypothetically reach the open market. Extensions for aging players typically do not work out well.

It is possible that the A’s could look to keep Canha around for a longer period. An extension that would buy one or two years of free agency could be viable, especially if the price is right. Anything beyond that simply would not make sense, especially with players such as Luis Barrera and Greg Deichmann on the cusp of reaching the majors.

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Mark Canha has been exactly what the Oakland Athletics had hoped for when he was selected in the 2014 Rule V Draft. That does not mean that the A’s should overextend themselves in terms of an extension.

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