The Oakland A’s have a lot of holes to fill on their roster. According to Susan Slusser, they may be hard pressed to bring any of their own players back.
The Oakland A’s are in a difficult situation this offseason. Not only do they have ten free agents from the 2020 roster, but their ever present financial crunch is even worse due to the pandemic. Those budgetary concerns could make it difficult for the A’s to really be a player in free agency.
Yet, even with those budgetary issues, it was expected that the A’s would bring a few of their players back. They have repetitively stated how much they want Marcus Semien and Tommy La Stella to return, hypothetically making it possible that they retain part of their infield. And, since some of their other free agents may not cost much, it would not be outside the realm of possibility for the likes of Yusmeiro Petit or T.J. McFarland to return.
However, the A’s may not be able to bring back any of their free agents. According to Susan Slusser, the A’s financial constraints may not allow them to bring back any key pieces whatsoever this offseason.
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The article does go on to say that Oakland may be able to bring back a couple of smaller pieces. Both Petit and Joakim Soria were mentioned as possibilities, which would help solidify the bullpen. It is also possible that the A’s could look to bring back Mike Fiers on a one year deal as a swingman or depth in the rotation should A.J. Puk suffer yet another injury and be unable to start.
This really should not be much of a surprise. A’s fans had to expect a slow, quiet offseason, especially given ownership’s ongoing complaints about finances. These statements just confirm what we have all suspected would be the case.
Bringing back Soria and Petit would help, even if they are the only two free agents that return. Soria has experience as a closer, and would presumably slot into that role for 2021. Petit has very quietly been one of the more effective relievers in the game over the past few years and would be a valuable piece of the puzzle.
But we should not expect any major moves, or even that the Oakland A’s will bring back any of their key free agents. They just do not have the financial resources.