Oakland Athletics 2024 Season Preview

Things didn't improve for the Oakland Athletics this offseason, but baseball still needs to be played. Let's check out their 2024 outlook.

PEORIA, AZ - MARCH 2: Lawrence Butler #2, Brett Harris #77 and Darell Hernaiz #48 of the Oakland Athletics in the dugout before a spring training game against the Seattle Mariners at Peoria Sports Complex on March 2, 2024 in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images)

Well, you made it through another offseason. Spring is here and the Oakland Athletics‘ roster looks a little different. A few low cost veterans were added to the lineup as well as the bullpen, although none could be described as needle movers.

Things have not improved much in Oakland. The stadium lacks upgrades, the team’s future is still a mess, and the A’s have turned off comments on social media post. However, baseball still needs to be played. For a moment, let’s put ownership in the rearview mirror and try to focus on the team and their outlook for 2024.

Oakland Athletics Starting Pitcher Depth Chart

Options: Alex Wood, Ross Stripling, JP Sears, Paul Blackburn, Joe Boyle, Luis Medina, Ken Waldichuk (IL), Royber Salinas, Joey Estes, Osvaldo Bido

Last season the Athletics rolled out a few interesting, newly-acquired arms in their rotation with mostly disappointment. The new plan was to replace those arms, at least for the time being, with a couple of veterans in Alex Wood (Opening Day starter) and Ross Stripling. Both spent last season across the bay with the Giants and bring a track record of success, but are close to the end of their careers.

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Injuries have slowed both down but I think the Stripling addition could be a savvy one. In 2022, his last fully health season, he posted a 3.01 ERA and 3.11 FIP bouncing between Toronto’s bullpen and rotation. More of an old school, control the zone, pitch to contact type, Stripling could turn into a nice deadline piece to dangle to a contender.

Sears had a nice year with the A’s last season and will look to build on that in 2024. While he does not have the stuff to likely ever become a frontline starter he very well could round out the rotation for years to come. In order to do that, he’ll have to find a bit more swing and miss and improve on the 34 home runs he gave up last season.

We know what Blackburn brings and Boyle is a fun mystery. An electric fastball that touches 100 mph but lacks control. He only produced a 21% whiff rate in a small sample last year and his success will fall on his control. Even if it does not work out in the rotation, Boyle has the stuff to be a plus-reliever.

Waldichuk, who is currently injured, struggled mightily to begin 2023, posting a 6.63 ERA in the first half. He bounced back to a 4.04 ERA in the second half while cutting down on walks and home runs. In terms of intrigue and upside, Waldichuk has my interest.


Options: Scott Alexander, Austin Adams, Brady Brasso, Lucas Erceg, Zach Jackson, Adrian Martinez, Michael Kelly, T.J. McFarland, Luis Medina, Dany Jimenez, Mason Miller, Kyle Muller, Sean Newcomb, Mitch Spence, Freddy Tarnok

Alexander joined the movement from San Francisco to Oakland and gives the A’s a lefty out of the bullpen they have desperately needed since Moll was traded. Alexander has had a ton of success in this league and even at 34-years old could still bounce back. The Santa Rosa kid will not strike many out but has had success missing barrels and trusting his defense.

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You might notice a few former starters now listed with the bullpen highlighted by Mason Miller. Injuries have likely ended his starting days but his value is still there. His 100 mph fastball will slide into the closer’s role and give the Athletics a feared pitcher in the ninth. Miller works a slider off his fastball that generated a 47% whiff rate last year and the move to the bullpen will allow him to focus on those two pitches.

Medina, Muller, and Tarnok as bullpen arms in my eyes and can find a role there with this team. Muller was a disaster last season and is nearing the end of his chances. Medina showed flashes and shorter outings could see his velocity tick back up to what once made him a coveted prospect.

The rest are mostly familiar to Athletics fans. One name you might not know is Mitch Spence. The Rule 5 Draft pick from the Yankees had a promising spring and could fill the long-relief role and even see spot starts. Throughout the minors he’s been in the rotation and if Boyle struggles Spence could be the first to replace him.


Options: Shea Langeliers (C), Tyler Soderstrom (C), Nick Allen, J.D. Davis, Jordan Diaz, Aledmys Diaz, Zack Gelof, Darell Hernaiz, Ryan Noda, Abraham Toro, Brett Harris, Logan Davison

I actually like the way this infield looks now more than I did last season. The most notable addition is, stop me if you heard this before, a former Giant in J.D. Davis. Davis had a good season last year, posting a 104 wRC+ and hitting 18 home runs with 2.2 fWAR. Much improved over the likes of Diaz or Jace Peterson.

Zack Gelof impressed in a 69-game sample in 2023 slashing .267/.337/.504 with 14 home runs and 14 stolen bases. The second baseman showed more power than I thoiught he had and if he could build off of that you have a 20/20 player on your hands. His double play partner will likely be rookie Darell Hernaiz, acquired for Cole Irvin, who really established himself in Double-A last season. Although he lacks power, he’s going to put the ball in play and flash a plus glove at short. A significant improvement at the plate from Nick Allen.

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At first, Ryan Noda is back after posting a 123 wRC+, 15.6% walk rate, and 34.3% K rate. He is a three-true-outcome type of player who will have to improve against fastballs. If Noda can find a way to hit velocity better and drop the K% to even around 28%, the A’s could have the future at first figured out.

Behind the plate was not what the Athletics had hoped for. Langeliers was fine and brought power although he did not offer much else. Top prospect Tyler Soderstrom was overmatched and will start the year in the minors.

The Athletics have missed on several prospects recently and truly cannot afford for Soderstrom to be a miss, too. He’s only 22 and I think talented enough to recover. The bat will carry his value as he really does not field any position well enough to stick at.

Name to keep an eye on: Brett Harris. Every time I watched him play I came away thinking he can be a big leaguer. Just a solid all around third baseman with the only thing holding him back being his power. We’ll see how he develops.


Options: Brent Rooker, Esteury Ruiz, Lawrence Butler, Seth Brown, JJ Bleday, Miguel Andujar, Denzel Clarke

Now it gets fun. While it might not be the best outfield, there sure is a lot of intrigue in this group. Brent Rooker had an amazing stint last season but started to show why he had bounced around. I see him as a trade candidate more than a future piece even though I am a fan of his. Ruiz is electric on the bases, he just doesn’t get on base enough. His lack of impact on the baseball really limits his ceiling and the approach raises even more questions. A fun player, but not a great one.

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Butler has the tools and swagger you want on your team. I could see a wide range of oucomes from plus starter to struggling in the minors. His rookie season was only 129 plate appearances and it was rough. We’ll see if him or Bleday can establish themselves as a lefty outfielder the team can count on.

Seth Brown dealt with an injury which really impacted his season. If he gets off to a good start I think you have to move him. Andujar had a massive spring hitting five home runs. Could this finally be the year he puts it together? Maybe so, but I would not bet on it.

Name to watch: Denzel Clarke. The tall, wirely, athletic outfielder is tooled up with speed and power and a ceiling that surpasses most, if not all, of the names on this list. I love watching him play and hope he gets a shot this year, but we need to see how he handles Triple-A first. If he does not improve on the ~30% K% he could spend all season in Vegas.

Final Thoughts on the 2024 Oakland Athletics

Oakland is looking at another bottom of the barrel season and likely last place finish in their division. I do think this team is improved from last season and fans will not have to endure so many games being out of reach by the third inning. With that being said, they still have a ways to go.

I do want to give a shoutout to the incredible Athletics fans, lead by the Last Dive Bar and Oakland 68’s who put on their own fan fest because the team would not. Seeing that many smiling faces in A’s gear is becoming more rare an I applaud you for continuing to work toward making the community better.

Lastly, sell the team.

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