1:15pm: Oakland is indeed still interested in adding a righty bat, GM David Forst tells reporters including Joe Stiglich of CSN Bay Area (Twitter link).
10:33am: The Athletics have at least expressed some interest in free-agent slugger Mark Trumbo, according to a report from Jon Heyman of Fan Rag. Oakland played a notable role in driving the market for Edwin Encarnacion, offering him a high-AAV, short-term deal before he landed with the Indians.
It’s worth emphasizing, as does the report, that it’s not yet clear to what degree Oakland intends to push for Trumbo. In theory, the organization could take an approach analogous to its pursuit of Encarnacion by dangling a shorter-term arrangement; or, it could perhaps go slightly longer at a lower annual salary. But the A’s may also be looking to function as a landing spot if Trumbo ends up failing to find a substantial contract elsewhere.
Previously, the Orioles reportedly made Trumbo an offer of four years and over $50MM. But that particular arrangement isn’t on the table at present (so far as the most recent reporting suggests). The Rockies, too, are said to be keeping an eye on Trumbo as they continue to weigh their various options — which could theoretically involve adding a first baseman, shifting Ian Desmond to the outfield, and moving an existing outfielder for pitching.
As for the Athletics, it’s possible to imagine them utilizing Trumbo in any number of ways. He could spend time at DH and first base, joining lefties Stephen Vogt and Yonder Alonso. It’s possible to imagine Trumbo spending time in the corner outfield, too, though the team has already added two outfield pieces this winter (Matt Joyce and Rajai Davis). And, of course, Oakland already has a lumbering, OBP-challenged, right-handed-hitting corner outfielder in Khris Davis, who turned in a 2016 season remarkably similar to Trumbo’s.
Trumbo, much like Davis, drove over forty long balls in his most recent campaign (47, in the case of the former). Both posted impressive .277 isolated slugging rates, and landed with identical 123 wRC+ marks for their overall production at the plate. But their overall values were limited by relatively hefty strikeout tallies, slightly below-average walk rates, and poorly rated glovework and baserunning.