Brett Anderson

Why A's might not bring back pitcher Brett Anderson for 2020 MLB season

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USATSI

Why A's might not bring back pitcher Brett Anderson for 2020 MLB season

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.

Brett Anderson, LHP

Contract: Free agent (earned $1.5 million this season)

Reasons to bring him back

Anderson arguably had the best season of his entire career, going 13-9 with a 3.89 ERA in 31 starts. Perhaps most impressive, the 31-year-old left-hander pitched 176 innings, just 4 1/3 shy of his career-high.

Anderson came to spring training in great shape this year and it paid off. While he dealt with a few minor bumps and bruises, he didn't have to miss any significant time with injuries, something that had plagued him throughout his career.

Even though the A's will have some great young talent in their starting rotation next season, you never can have too much pitching depth. We've seen how many injuries can sideline pitchers in the modern game, which means teams typically try to have 10 reliable starting pitchers to begin a season, not just five.

Reasons to let him go

The A's starting rotation is shaping up to be its best since the Big Three played in Oakland.

With Jesús Luzardo, Frankie Montas, Sean Manaea, Mike Fiers, A.J. Puk, and Chris Bassitt all ahead of him on the depth chart, Anderson might make more sense in a relief role. However, at this stage of his career, Anderson might have no interest in joining the bullpen, and he might want more money than the A's are willing to offer.

Based on his performance in 2019, he certainly deserves a raise from his $1.5 million salary. The question is what number Anderson and his agent Brian Peters would accept.

[RELATED: Should A's bring back Profar in 2020?]

Final verdict

If Anderson is willing to sign another one-year deal for relatively cheap, he absolutely would be worth bringing back for depth purposes. But that seems unlikely following such a productive season.

Just look at last offseason when Trevor Cahill signed a one-year, $9 million deal with the Angels after going 7-4 with a 3.76 ERA. CC Sabathia got $8 million from the Yankees following a 9-7 season with a 3.65 ERA. Even if Anderson isn't offered that much, someone figures to give him more than the A's would (and should).

For that reason, Anderson returning to Oakland feels like a long shot.

Brett Anderson wants to return to A's in 2020 if spot is available

Brett Anderson wants to return to A's in 2020 if spot is available

Brett Anderson was sitting in front of his locker next to Mark Canha, who was surrounded by the media scrum after Wednesday night's devastating AL Wild Card loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.

The A's starter took to Twitter following the game to give thanks to the team he called the "most fun" he's had with a group throughout the entirety of his career. And after 11 years in the league, that's a hell of a compliment.

The early conclusion to the season brought about questions as to whether or not the lefty veteran would re-sign with the A's. The San Francisco Chronicle's Susan Slusser reported Anderson wants to return to the Green and Gold in 2020, but with the future of the pitching staff looking bright, he's unsure how that would come to fruition:

The 31-year-old finished the 2019 season with a 3.89 ERA and 90 strikeouts in 176 innings pitched. 

[RELATED: Why A's are excited to add Luzardo, Puk to rotation]

With Jesús Luzardo, Sean Manaea and A.J. Puk making their way into the rotation, the A's future on the mound is brimming with talent. But for now, Anderson is happy with what he contributed to Oakland in 2019, and we're pretty confident the team is as well.

A's vs. Astros lineups: Brett Anderson seeks career-high season win

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A's vs. Astros lineups: Brett Anderson seeks career-high season win

After exchanging massive blowouts, the A's and Astros will take the field for game three of their four-game series Wednesday night in Houston.

The Astros routed Oakland 15-0 in the first game of the series, but the A's bounced back with a dominant 21-7 win on Tuesday. Houston still leads the season series 11-6.

Ramón Laureano returns to the A’s lineup, but not in his usual center field. He will instead be in right and bat seventh. Mark Canha will handle center and hit cleanup.

Sean Murphy will be behind the plate again after launching two home runs in Tuesday’s win. He will bat ninth.

Brett Anderson will take the hill for Oakland, seeking his career-high 12th win of the season. Anderson, 31, is 11-9 with a 4.08 ERA in 28 starts this year. However, the left-hander is just 1-5 with a 6.68 ERA in seven career outings against the Astros.

Houston will counter with right-hander José Urquidy. The 24-year-old rookie is 1-1 with a 5.33 ERA in six games this season, including five starts. This will be his first appearance against the A's.

Here are the full lineups for the A's-Angels game, which will be broadcast on NBC Sports California and the MyTeams app. Coverage begins at 4:30 p.m. PT, with first pitch at 5:10.

Oakland A's (85-60)
SS Marcus Semien
3B Matt Chapman
1B Matt Olson
CF Mark Canha
LF Seth Brown
DH Khris Davis
RF Ramón Laureano 
2B Jurickson Profar
C Sean Murphy

LHP Brett Anderson (11-9, 4.08 ERA)

Houston Astros (95-51)
CF George Springer
2B José Altuve
LF Michael Brantley
3B Alex Bregman
DH Yordan Álvarez
1B Aledmys Díaz
RF Josh Reddick
C Martín Maldonado
SS Myles Straw 

RHP José Urquidy (1-1, 5.33 ERA)