Oakland A’s: Keeping Yusmeiro Petit should be an easy decision

The Oakland A’s have ten players ticketed for free agency. Yusmeiro Petit should be an easy choice to retain.

The Oakland A’s are certain to look a lot different come Opening Day 2021. With ten players slated to enter free agency, including their starting middle infielders and a host of relief pitchers, the A’s will need to make decisions as to which players to retain, and which to let go.

One of the easiest decisions should be Yusmeiro Petit. He has been seemingly used in every situation for Oakland since signing there three years ago, a rubber armed righty who does not let the moment phase him.

In that time, Petit has posted a 2.73 ERA and a 0.936 WHiP in his 197.2 innings, striking out 164 batters with 33 walks. He has been particularly adept at getting those weak fly balls and pop ups that the A’s have needed, wriggling out of almost every jam he is called upon to preserve.

While a pitcher such as Petit is valuable, he is not the type of arm that will carry a hefty price tag. He will turn 36 years old in just a few weeks, and is not the flamethrowing reliever that teams covet. Instead, he is simply someone who knows how to pitch, which has become a lost art these days.

That makes him perfect for the A’s. As it was, his three year deal was worth just $14.5 million, and made $5.5 million last year. That amount proved to be a bargain as Petit became one of the A’s top relievers, a key part of their regular season bullpen buzzsaw.

Chances are, he will cost even less this offseason, as he continues to age. Although he may not be in the running to be the A’s new closer, he would be a steady bridge to the ninth, that trusted reliever that the A’s can call upon to get those tough outs in the later innings. There is plenty of value to being dependable, regardless of what his age and stuff may say.

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The Oakland A’s will have many difficult decisions to make this offseason, but Yusmeiro Petit should not be one of them. He should be back for the 2021 season.