Oakland A’s: Three players that need to step up in 2021

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(Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images)

The Oakland A’s have made the postseason in each of the last three years. If they are going to make it four in a row, these players need to step up in 2021.

The Oakland A’s have been in the midst of an impressive run. Despite a low payroll, the A’s have found their way to the postseason in each of the past three years. While they came up short yet again in 2020, they were able to get past the first round for the first time since 2006, showing signs of progress.

That success means nothing for 2021. Oakland will have a vastly different team going forward as ten players are free agents. Although the core of the roster essentially remains intact, the A’s roster turnover will still have a major effect on the upcoming season.

In order for the A’s to make it four consecutive seasons in the postseason, they will need to get production from different sources. The A’s should be a much younger team in 2021, and will need to have some of those players take a major step forward.

Which players need to step up for the Oakland A’s in 2021? Here are some candidates.

Ramon Laureano

Ramon Laureano appeared to be on the cusp of stardom entering the 2021 season. However, that train never really left the station.

Laureano was still a valuable player, posting 1.3 bWAR over the course of the abbreviated season. However, his production waned compared to previous years. He produced a disappointing .213/.338/.364 batting line in his 222 plate appearances, hitting eight doubles and six homers.

There is one area that he already stepped up in last year. Following his incident with the Astros, Laureano began to emerge as one of the leaders of the A’s. With the possible departure of Marcus Semien, who had been the heart and soul of the club, the A’s will need someone to step into that role. Laureano could be the player.

While Laureano has been one of the premier defensive players in the game, he also needs to get back to his 2019 form in the batter’s box. He appeared to be a viable threat from the leadoff spot, possessing intriguing power and solid speed while getting on base at a strong rate.

The Oakland A’s will need that Ramon Laureano again in 2021. Hopefully, he can be that player for them.

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