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

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 27: Frankie Montas #47 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Seattle Mariners in the top of the first inning at RingCentral Coliseum on September 27, 2020 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 27: Frankie Montas #47 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Seattle Mariners in the top of the first inning at RingCentral Coliseum on September 27, 2020 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) /

Frankie Montas

Let’s face it – the Oakland A’s are not about to pony up for an ace in free agency. If they are to find one, it will be a pitcher that is already on the roster.

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Of the current A’s, Frankie Montas seems to be the most likely pitcher to take that step to being an ace in 2021. The A’s had hoped that he would be that ace in 2020, giving him the ball for Opening Day. Over his first four starts that appeared to be the case, until he was brought down to earth by what was supposedly a minor back injury.

Those struggles over his final two months led to a mediocre overall season. Montas posted a 5.60 ERA and a 1.509 WHiP, striking out 60 batters with 23 walks in his 53 innings. He had appeared to be a front runner for the AL Cy Young through his first four starts, only to completely crater afterwards.

With a full offseason to recuperate, Montas should be healthy for the 2021 season. He showed the potential that the A’s were hoping for before that injury, leading to the belief that he could continue to take a step forward.

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He is going to have to. If the Oakland A’s are going to find an ace for the 2021 season, Frankie Montas might be their best option.

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