2016 Record 69-93 (5th AL West)
Tonight we venture into the AL West to check on the Oakland A’s. No A’s correspondent as of now, although I do have questions out to a few reporters and will update the post if I hear anything back. In the meantime, you should definitely check out our interview with Jason Turbow about his book on the early 70’s A’s!
I think it’s safe to say “moneyball” has died down a little bit, as the A’s have not been very good since giving Josh Donaldson away a few years ago. They hope to turn that around this year but they aren’t exactly overflowing with all stars.
Offensively, Oakland should be able to score some runs as I’ve got them as my 8th rated American League offense. I’m projecting their lineup 11th in the AL, but their bench comes in as my 7th best squad.
The starting rotation, which used to dominate in Oakland, doesn’t look like much of a bright spot anymore. I’ve got the A’s rotation 14th in the American League heading into 2017. I wasn’t exactly eager to give Sonny Gray bounceback status and now Oakland’s saying he’ll miss at least opening night and probably more. Hopefully some of their younger guys can step up.
Although the rotation doesn’t exactly give the A’s much to look forward to, the bullpen should be really good this year for the A’s. I’ve got their bullpen as my 4th best squad in the AL. If they can get into the later part of games with a lead, or at least a tie game, they should be able to squeeze out a few extra wins.
The defense neither adds to or takes away from the A’s overall score headed into 2017. This is actually a bad thing, seeing as how they’re my 13th rated AL defense.
When it’s all tallied up, I’ve got the Athletics as my 11th overall squad in the American League. They finished 13th in the league last year, so this should be a bit of a better year by the bay.
Vegas has the A’s win total set at 73.5. Last year’s 11th place team, the White Sox, finished at 78-84. I’m not sure if I’m quite that optimistic on the A’s this year, but I don’t think there will be a 4 game or more gap between the two teams. It’ll be close but I think the A’s will finish over 73.5 wins.
I’m not super confident about that pick though so lay off that one. When the 2017 season ends, I think the A’s will be sitting at 75-87.
Next up, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim!