The Oakland Athletics underwent a tumultuous season last year. Going back to the 2014 off-season, the Athletics underwent a rebuild of their entire roster as key players were shipped out in order to bring in younger talent and beef up the farm system. That approach continued into the off-season as the Athletics sold off more veteran players to bring in younger talent. The changes haven’t ceased for the Athletics as longtime general manager Billy Beane was recently promoted to vice president of baseball operations. One of Beane’s first acts during his tenure as vice president is to seek out an extension for right fielder Josh Reddick, as reported by Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle.
Reddick was one of the core pieces during the Athletics’ domination of the AL West division for several years. As the Athletics underwent their rebuild, he was speculated to be on the trading block as several of the core players that helped the Athletics control the AL West were being traded. The Athletics chose to hang on to the veteran right fielder, though. He had a solid campaign this season despite an overall underwhelming season for the Athletics. Reddick hit .272/.333/.449 with 20 home runs and 77 RBIs as well as ten stolen bases. He has had a solid career as an Athletic helping lead the team to several postseason appearances. He has also shown himself to be a stellar defensive outfielder as he won the Gold Glove award in 2012. He has been one of the Athletics’ most consistent players and is also entering his final year of arbitration. It was widely speculated that the Athletics’ would continue to trade some of their veteran players and continue their rebuild and he would be one of the most sought-after outfielders on the trade market. That does not look to be the case as Beane has publicly stated that Reddick should remain an Athletic for quite a while as they intend to pursue an extension with him.
The veteran would have sought a nice haul for the Athletics as a lot of teams could use an outfielder with both plus offensive and defensive skills but the Athletics clearly see him as one of the core pieces of their team for years to come and want to retain his services while they still can. Reddick’s extension will undoubtedly be expensive but, at the same time, the Athletics aren’t known to hand out large deals. They prefer to operate on small contracts with affordable value. It will be interesting to see how negotiations turn out over the course of the off-season. There is always the possibility that the Athletics will be unable to agree to terms with Reddick and have no other alternative but to trade him but it seems likely that both sides will agree to an amicable deal.
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