Athletics

Sources: A's, Shawn Kelley's representatives have 'positive dialogue'

Sources: A's, Shawn Kelley's representatives have 'positive dialogue'

LAS VEGAS - The A's already have one of the strongest bullpens in baseball, but they might not be done adding relievers.

According to multiple sources, Oakland has met with Shawn Kelley's representatives this week at the Winter Meetings. One source described the meeting as producing "positive dialogue."

Kelley, 34, went 1-0 with a 2.16 ERA in 19 games with the A's last season after coming over from the Nationals. He loved his experience in Oakland, saying it rejuvenated him after he had considered retiring.

Kelley may not be the only free agent reliever the A's try to bring back next season. Ken Rosenthal suggested Oakland could also target 29-year-old Jeurys Familia.

Familia went 4-2 with one save and a 3.45 ERA in 30 games last season with the A's after being acquired from the New York Mets. However, Familia earned $7.925 million last season, by far the most of any Oakland reliever.

Rosenthal also noted the A's could target "inexpensive" starting pitchers. As of Wednesday, the team was still talking to right-handers Edwin Jackson and Trevor Cahill, though no deal was imminent
 

A's claim right-handed pitcher Parker Bridwell off waivers from Angels

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AP

A's claim right-handed pitcher Parker Bridwell off waivers from Angels

The A's added to their pitching staff by acquiring Parker Bridwell.

The team announced on Tuesday the 27-year-old had been claimed off of waivers from the Los Angeles Angels. This was the third time the right-handed pitcher had been claimed off of waivers since the end of the season. 

Last season, with the Halos, Bridwell posted a 17.55 ERA in 6.2 innings. Previously in 2017, he posted a 3.64 ERA in 121 innings.

He will add some pitching depth to the A's, and it appears that despite the numbers, his age shows he still has a healthy timeline left to prove he can bring something to the table. 

[RELATED: Daniel Mengden hopes for career year in 2019]

The ninth-round pick in the 2010 MLB Draft does not lack diversity which is what the A's seem to like. He's started 20 games and has made seven relief appearances. Perhaps the change of scenery could be of some success. 

A's 2019 projections: Team could rely heavily on pitcher Daniel Mengden

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USATSI

A's 2019 projections: Team could rely heavily on pitcher Daniel Mengden

Editor's note: Over the next few weeks, NBC Sports California will be analyzing a different A's player each day to project their numbers for next season.

Daniel Mengden has a golden opportunity in front of him this season. The 25-year-old right-hander will almost certainly earn a spot in the A's starting rotation out of spring training and will have a chance to remain there all year.

If the season started today, Mengden would likely slot in as Oakland's number two starter behind only veteran Mike Fiers. While the A's figure to add at least one more starting pitcher this offseason, they will still rely heavily on Mengden, especially in the first half of the season.

Mengden has shown flashes of brilliance in three Major League seasons but has lacked consistency. That was certainly the case last year when he posted a spectacular 1.51 ERA in the month of May but followed it up with an 11.57 ERA in June.

Overall last season, Mengden went 7-6 with a 4.05 ERA and 1.12 WHIP in 22 games, including 17 starts. For his career, he is 12-17 with a 4.64 ERA and 1.26 WHIP.

Mengden was demoted to Triple-A following his rough June but pitched well when he was recalled in August. In six appearances down the stretch, he compiled a 2.52 ERA.

When Mengden is at his best, he limits walks and induces ground balls. He runs into trouble when he falls behind in counts as he doesn't have overpowering stuff.

Baseball Reference projects Mengden to go 7-7 next season with a 4.08 ERA and 1.19 WHIP. They predict him to pitch 117 innings with 93 strikeouts and 34 walks.

We believe Mengden will put together the best season of his career. With three years under his belt, he has learned how to attack Major League hitters and should be comfortable in all situations.

[RELATED: Franklin Barreto could make impact in 2019]

Mengden has shown he can dominate big league hitters on a given night, recording complete game shutouts each of the last two seasons. The key for him in 2019 will be consistency.

Projection: 11-7, 3.71 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 104 K, 34 BB, 141 IP