Free Agent Additions
The A’s need to add both offense and pitching. Specifically, the left side of the infield, corner outfield, and the entire pitching staff need improvements. Estuary Ruiz, JJ Bleday, and Lawrence Butler offer a glimpse into the future, but the A’s could do better than relying on those guys for everyday production. And while Nick Allen can hold his own at the six from a defensive perspective, he struggled at the plate in 2023.
The bad news is that unless John Fisher wants to pony up, the options for SS/3B in free agency this year are slim. Charlie Culberson and Brian Anderson aren’t exciting players but they might be roster fits. A versatile outfielder with a capable bat isn’t easy to find, but someone like Travis Jankowski or Michael A Taylor would make sense, and potentially be in the right price range.
Assuming the club were to pick up a reliever in the Rule 5 draft, a capable starting pitcher would be a big get. Dreams of adding Aaron Nola or Yoshinobu Yamamoto are fleeting, but this class of free agent starting pitchers is deep.
A stopgap type pitcher or two like Wade Miley or Tyler Mahle could come in and provide valuable innings at a limited cost. It would allow the young guys like Ken Waldichuk, Mason Miller, and Kyle Muller to ease into their places in the rotation rather than being vital to the team’s success in 2024.