Editor's note: Over the next two weeks, we will examine 10 A's players who may or may not return to Oakland next season. For each player, we will provide reasons why the A's should bring him back and reasons why they should not, followed by a final determination.
Tanner Roark, RHP
Contract: Free agent (earned $10 million this season)
Reasons to bring him back
Roark got off to a terrific start with the A's, but staggered to a disappointing finish. The 33-year-old went 3-1 with a 2.70 ERA in his first six outings wearing green and gold. However, he was just 1-2 with an 8.35 ERA in his last four starts.
Overall, Roark posted a 4-3 record and a 4.58 ERA in 10 starts with Oakland. The right-hander finished the 2019 season with a 10-10 mark and a 4.35 ERA in 31 starts between the A's and Reds, certainly serviceable numbers.
Roark was also a natural fit in the A's clubhouse, almost immediately bonding with his new teammates. By the end of the season, he was one of the more popular players on the team.
Reasons to let him go
At 33 years old, Roark's prime is clearly behind him. He hasn't posted a sub-four ERA since 2016 and his WHIP has steadily increased over the past few seasons.
With the A's starting rotation likely to feature Jesús Luzardo, Frankie Montas, Sean Manaea, Mike Fiers, and A.J. Puk, not to mention Chris Bassitt also in the mix, Roark probably wouldn't have much of an opportunity to make an impact. Throw in a hefty price tag and it wouldn't make a ton of sense to bring him back.
It would be surprising to see Roark back in green and gold next season unless he desperately wants to return and would take a low salary. That seems unlikely, especially with numerous teams still looking for quality starters.
Roark probably won't get the $10 million he earned last year, but he could very well see something close to that number. With a stable of young starting pitchers, the A's has no real reason to re-sign an expensive veteran just for depth purposes. Look for Roark to sign elsewhere this offseason.