Billy Beane and the Oakland A’s have been engaging in trade talks with clubs interested in outfielder/first baseman Brandon Moss. Nothing is imminent, or so it seems. MLB.com sources spilled that the Cleveland Indians are discussing options with the A’s, as well as a few other mystery teams. How close the teams are to a deal is unclear, but we all learn in the hot stove season that anything can happen in the blink of an eye.
Trading off Moss would be another blow to the A’s clubhouse, who bid farewell to long-time third baseman Josh Donaldson. Oakland has gotten younger this offseason to fulfill classic Beane team requirements. Designated hitter/first basemen Billy Butler and Ike Davis have already been acquired, making Moss expendable.
Looking at the Donaldson trade for Brett Lawrie and three prospects, it’s assumed that Beane has eyes on the future once again. Cleveland’s Nick Swisher is recovering from surgery on both knees, so it’s clear that there is a place for Moss within the tribe. Should Moss go to the Indians it’s unclear who it would be for. If the A’s are looking for a younger infield, shortstop Erik Gonzalez, who posted .357 in Double-A this year could be a possibility.
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Moss’ absence would still harm the A’s lineup. Battling a hip injury he recorded 25 homers this season and a .234 BA. He’s posted 21+ homeruns for the past three years. The 31 year old is eligible for arbitration in January and a candidate for free agency in 2016. He also earned $4.1M last year in salary. The Indians search for a big hitter to aid the offense could be solved by picking up Moss.
Worth noting: Moss made his career debut with the Boston Red Sox in 2008 under the leadership of Terry Francona. He was traded to the Pirates, played a year in Philly and has spent three years in Oakland. Will he be reunited with his first major league skipper?