OAKLAND -- The A's search for rotation help is no secret. But the cost-conscious club won't be in play for the select, high-priced options for sale this offseason, leaving Oakland to mingle with the secondary options.A slew of these lower alternatives remain available ahead of next week's Winter Meetings, which
OAKLAND -- The A's search for rotation help is no secret. But the cost-conscious club won't be in play for the select, high-priced options for sale this offseason, leaving Oakland to mingle with the secondary options.
A slew of these lower alternatives remain available ahead of next week's Winter Meetings, which often act as the backdrop to a stream of wheeling and dealing.
Just how active the A's will be within these confines remains to be seen -- they also need a catcher and perhaps a second baseman -- but it's worth examining some of their options.
Days ago, Oakland relinquished Mike Fiers, among others, to the free-agent market, only further subtracting from the club's 2019 rotation. In-house options are currently limited to Daniel Mengden, Chris Bassitt, Frankie Montas, Paul Blackburn, assuming health, and top pitching prospect Jesus Luzardo.
Who could join them? Edwin Jackson and Trevor Cahill could return for another go-around in green and gold. A peek at other possibilities:
Giovany Gonzalez: The lefty debuted with the A's in 2008, and he has since put together a nice resume, most recently finishing the 2018 campaign with the Brewers. Gonzalez split the season between Washington and Milwaukee, going 10-11 with a 4.21 ERA over 171 innings, and he is said to be seeking a multiyear deal. The 33-year-old has proven to be quite durable in his career, completing at least 150 innings in each of his nine full big-league seasons -- eight of them featuring more than 170 innings. Not one A's starter tallied 170 innings last season.
Matt Harvey: The A's have already been linked to Harvey, who endured a turbulent year before entering free agency. The right-hander finished the 2018 season with a 4.94 ERA following 32 appearances (28 starts) between the Mets and Reds, racking up 111 strikeouts across 128 innings in Cincinnati, while allowing three earned runs or fewer in 17 of his final 24 outings. Harvey, soon to be 30, doesn't come without baggage, though; the former top Draft pick has undergone multiple procedures, succumbing to both Tommy John surgery and thoracic outlet surgery, and he was the subject of off-field drama in New York.
Derek Holland: Holland is drawing multiyear interest following a bounce-back season with the Giants, and the A's are more than familiar with the lefty, who spent the first eight years of his Major League career with the Rangers. The 32-year-old gave the Giants 171 1/3 innings, fanning 169 and logging a 3.57 ERA. He'd be a nice addition to the A's if the price is right.
Wade Miley: This veteran left-hander is coming off an encouraging year, having enjoyed a resurgence with the Brewers following a stretch of several underwhelming seasons. Miley logged a 2.57 ERA over 80 2/3 innings with Milwaukee, and he could come at a reasonable rate.
Jeremy Hellickson: The former American League Rookie of the Year Award winner was limited to 19 starts with the Nationals in 2018 because of a nagging wrist injury, but he pitched well when healthy, posting a 3.45 ERA and a 4.22 FIP over 91 1/3 innings. Coming off an injury, the 31-year-old righty likely won't command the attention of many clubs, which could work in the A's favor. Hellickson has a track record of moderate success and he could rebuild his value on a budget-friendly, one-year deal in green and gold.
Tyson Ross: Yet another cost-effective option, the right-hander could seek a reunion with the A's after putting together a decent second half with the Cardinals to the tune of a 3.70 ERA. Ross finished the year with 149 2/3 innings, compared to 49 in 2017. There are health and velocity concerns, but the risk could be worth a moderate price.
Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.