60-102. Let that sink in. From 2000 – 2021, the A’s went to the playoffs 11 times. They had 7 division championships, including 2020. In 2021 they missed the playoffs but still went 86-76. This year they went 60-102. The team that invented “Moneyball,” that found “ market inefficiencies” to exploit and remain competitive despite being a small market team appears to have now embraced the “tear down and rebuild” concept. That, of course, means there’s no real effort at being competitive this year, and it showed. Don’t expect a rapid turnaround either. They had three players split time at DH…none hit even 10 home runs, and none hit .200 or better. The team ERA was 4.52. In other words, nothing was good…as one expects when a team loses 102 games in a season.
The elephant in the room for the Elephants isn’t players—they need everything and no departure really moves the needle. No, for them it’s “where do they play after 2024?” That’s when their current lease is up. They thought they had a deal for a new stadium at Howard’s Terminal in Oakland, but the city missed an October deadline to finalize that deal. Robert Manfred recently stated MLB relocation fees would be waived were the A’s to move to Las Vegas. I personally hate the Vegas idea…it’s intolerably hot there in the summer, and baseball there is liable to make Coors Field look like a pitchers’ park. However, it’s also true the team cannot indefinitely play in a converted football stadium with suspect plumbing as they do now. They’re genuinely running out of time.