Notes from the Oakland Athletics ZIPS Projections for 2024

There isn't too much to hope for with the Oakland Athletics in 2024. Let's see who is projected to carry the A's throughout this season.

Esteury Ruiz
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - APRIL 13: Esteury Ruiz #1 of the Oakland Athletics celebrates after hitting a first inning double against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on April 13, 2023 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

The offseason in Oakland has been nothing short of sad. It can go without saying the front office did not add a bona fide free agent or make any moves that change the trajectory of this team. Fans focus has been toward movements to get Owner John Fisher to sell while they are left feeling neglected – and rightfully so.

For a moment, let’s take a step back from the issues in ownership and talk about the players on the field. Dan Szymborski of FanGraphs recently released his 2024 ZIPS projections. If you are not familiar with ZIPS, it is one of the computer systems designed to project players seasons based off various data. You can read the full breakdown here.

Today I’ll dive into the A’s projections for 2024 and see what this team might look like.

Position Players

Zack Gelof554.236/.307/.39416211002.0
Brent Rooker 527.240/.324/.4622741231.9
Darell Hernaiz559.247/.300/.358810891.6
Esteury Ruiz510.249/.319/.365853961.6
Shea Langeliers 475.226/.288/.4192021001.5
Nick Allen489.240/.296/.329511801.4
Abraham Toro446.243/.314/.3851051001.3
Ryan Noda504.210/.331/.3811741040.9
Seth Brown420.230/.293/.4411941070.7
Miguel Andujar 477.261/.306/.4011251010.5
JJ Bleday487.211/.310/.377155960.5
Lawrence Butler 516.230/.285/.3691313860.4
Aledmys Diaz328.238/.293/.35861860.0
Tyler Soderstrom502.210/.257/.36617176-0.3
Jordan Diaz502.239/.279/.35412083-1.0

A quick glance at these projections will tell you the system does not expect many players getting on base at an average clip. Keep in mind, the system has a harder time predicting players with a smaller sample size, so rookies from last year, who likely will have more development, can be less accurate. Regardless, this offense lacks big power and players who are plus hitters.

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  • Tyler Soderstrom was a top 100, even top 50, prospect by most websites. The 22 year-old flashed power in the minors in 2023, but overall posted an underwhelming year. He looked overmatched once he reached the majors and his defense behind the plate is poor leading many to wonder if he is a DH only. A big year for Stephenson as he will have to prove he is the prospect he was once viewed as.
  • Darell Herniaz, acquired in the Cole Irvin trade, really improved his stock across Double and Triple-A in 2023. While he does not bring much power, his bat to ball skills and defense should push Nick Allen out of a starting job at short. I think he could post a better average than his projection.
  • I’m not sure where the power will come from this lineup. Rooker is an obvious trade candidate and I agree with the projection on Gelof not building off his 14 home runs in 69 games from last year. You hope Seth Brown has a bounce back but if he does he is likely traded as well. Cross your fingers one of the younger players see a power surge.
  • I’ll take the over on OPS+ for Noda. His eye for the zone is elite but the swing and miss issues are there. Still a talented enough hitter to round out a good year and be valuable, but he has to improve on non-fastballs or he’ll see more and more breaking balls.
  • While they are not listed, prospects Denzel Clarke and Brett Harris are two names I’d watch out for. Clarke is a 6’5″ outfielder with tools, power, swing and miss, and some speed. He posted a 130 wRC+ in Double-A and could replace Bleday if he struggles. Harris plays third and is more of a bat to ball hitter who does not strikeout much. While nothing really pops, every time I watched him I thought he was solid enough to take over third from the lackluster options

Starting Pitchers

PlayerStartsERAFIPSONear Age Comp
JP Sears264.084.34133Frank Viola
Paul Blackburn224.434.3987Casey Kelly
Luis Medina204.514.57106Greg Keagle
Joe Boyle 234.774.98115Steve Johnson
Ken Waldichuk214.334.30123Rich Wortham
Osvaldo Bido184.554.5888Chad Reineke
Kyle Muller 234.674.51108Roenis Elias
Mitch Spence 254.184.27105Ben Lively
Joey Estes234.554.7398Henderson Alverez
Royber Salinas 224.474.5187Jose Roman
Near Age Comp is generated by Fangraphs

Several names on this list, and some who are not listed, will likely see time in the minors and/or bullpen. The A’s have a litany of names who can start, but probably profile better as relief pitchers. You may notice Mason Miller is not on this list as it is believed he will move to the bullpen in hopes of prevent more injuries.

  • JP Sears doesn’t really do anything exceptionally well, but is a solid high floor arm. I think he profiles more as a four or five, but in this rotation he’s a frontline starter. I do think a 4.08 ERA is a bit strong for me as I think he lands more towards 4.25.
  • Muller and Waldichuk did not exactly hit expectations last year, however, I could see Waldichuk pitching better than his projections. His second half was much better than his first (6.63 ERA v 4.04). Out of his nine second half starts, seven resulted in two or fewer runs with the other two resulting in four runs. He saw a dip across the board in his hard hit percentage and a bump in his swing and miss. Maybe he found something, now he has to be healthy.
  • Medina and Boyle both have reliver risk in my eyes. Which isn’t exactly a bad thing. Boyle’s fastball can reach 100 mph and Medina’s would see an uptick out of the bullpen as well. I don’t have much confidence in them finding the zone enough and think they could have higher ERA’s than projected.
  • Estes and Salinas join the discussion of minor leaguers who will get a shot. Both on the 40-man and with higher upside than several names. I’d lean towards Estes having the best shot to beat those projections.
  • Oakland has no shortage of the fringe/coming back from injury/unknown prospect types. Freddy Tarnok, Gunnar Hoglund, Ryan Cruisck, and J.T. Ginn to name a few. Keep an eye on Jack Perkins who pitched well in Double-A before struggling a bit in Triple. I liked what I saw and he could be someone to earn starts at some point.


PlayerGamesERAFIPSONear Age Comp
Mason Miller523.403.4571Chris Ray
Adrian Martinez29 (Including Starts)4.504.6682Erick Fedde
Zach Jackson374.384.3946Jim Duffalo
Sean Newcomb274.864.8238Derrick Ellison
Trevor Gott534.034.0352Porfi Altamirano
Michael Kelly 424.184.0955Bo Donaldson
Dany Jimenez 374.254.4544Danny Frisella
Angel Felipe354.404.4650Dustin Antolin
Brady Basso23 (Including Starts)4.084.1653Dave Jensen
Hogan Harris25 (Including Starts)4.744.6991Jesus Sanchez
Lucas Erceg464.184.2057Derek Eitel

We all know how up and down bullpens can be. The A’s have taken the approach of low level signings and waiver claims to build out their bullpen, which really is not a bad strategy when you are “rebuilding”, or whatever you call what this front office is doing.

  • Mason Miller’s injury history has pushed him to the bullpen where I think he can really thrive. We’ll see if the fastball still sits 98 mph, but with his movement, plus his slider, I think he can be a long-term high-leverage arm. Let’s go with an under 3.40 ERA prediction.
  • Brasso has posted impressive numbers primarily as a starter since being slected in the 16th round in 2019. With so many unproven starters, Brasso could factor into the bullpen as a lefty option. Muller, Newcomb, and Harris are not exactly tough sure things. You could see those numbers change if he is moved.
  • Lucas Erceg pitched pretty well after coming over from the Brewers organization and I think there’s a chance he can outperform his number. An electric fastball that can strike batters out with a pretty decent groundball rate. As is the case for most bullpen guys, walks will tell the story.


Let’s be honest, this team is bad. I don’t see a premium level player anywhere on the roster and their most exciting young players are either limited, hurt, or got off to a bad start to their career. With so many questions about who will and won’t get playing time, these projections are likely to be the most incorrect of any team.

The good news, if these *are right* Blackburn and Rooker would at least have trade value. Another year of moving players and losing games. Rock bottom.