OAKLAND -- There was a sense of confidence among A's players and manager Bob Melvin as they trickled into media day.
BoMel said it was the most excited he's been about the team since he's been with the A's, and it's no different for two-time Platinum Glove Award winner Matt Chapman, but he had to embrace the tough ending to 2019, first.
"We were really sad, and then for a while, it was pretty quiet," Chapman told NBC Sports California at the end of January. "But then, we all kind of turned the page a little bit and started appreciating everything accomplished -- and we were getting excited for next year."
Chappy made it clear the one-and-done losses the team faced over the past two seasons were not going to be a trend. There would not be a repeat of that in 2020, where the clubhouse filled up with packing boxes as the opposing team celebrated with champagne-soaked excitement.
"We're going to take it to the next level," he said.
And it'll begin with the young arms, he went on.
"I think it starts with all of our young pitching that is getting more mature."
Top left-handed pitching prospects A.J. Puk and Jesús Luzardo will be a part of that possible starting rotation this upcoming season.
Luzardo, although a small sample size, hosted a 1.50 ERA and 0.667 WHIP in six games and 46 batters faced in 2019. Puk, who also made his highly-anticipated MLB debut last season, came out of the bullpen and in 11 1/3 innings boasted a 3.18 ERA with 13 strikeouts facing 47 batters.
Oakland will also get a full season of Frankie Montas who missed a chunk of time in 2019 after violating MLB's Joint Drug Agreement testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs.
Veteran Mike Fiers and Sean Manaea are set to join the starting squad as well.
"It's like the first time we've had a set rotation, and it's guys we really trust, guys that have been tested," Chapman said. "We've had rotations, but we've always had guys go down, or this or that, it's like -- we have a five-man rotation with [Chris] Bassitt in there as well as a sixth, or a bullpen guy, whatever we need."
"They all have insane stuff," Chapman added.
Chapman included the defensive and offensive game as two additional things for the team to have confidence in.
"Our pitching is only getting better, and I think our hitters are only going to get more polished, we're just going to be more mature -- we have more experience," he said. "The more at-bats you can give those guys, the better. The bullpen is only going to get better."
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"I think we're just a really, really good young, well-rounded team."
It was also something new and exciting for Chappy to be able to look around the clubhouse and recognize most of the players this time around, that'll help.
"I just have the confidence in our whole team -- we know what to expect," Chapman said. "Instead of starting from scratch, we can kind of just build on what we have, the momentum."