The A's head start is an early hole.
After an 0-2 start against the Seattle Mariners in Tokyo, Oakland has to play catch-up when 28 other teams open their seasons Thursday. The winless start isn't insurmountable, though, as the A's snagged a Wild Card spot in 2018 after starting the season 5-10.
Can Oakland do it again in 2019? With the MLB season set to start (or restart) Thursday, we take our best crack at predicting the A's top contributors this year:
Offensive MVP: Khris Davis
Matt Chapman and Stephen Piscotty could certainly be in the running, but Davis takes Oakland's lineup to another level. The 31-year-old has recorded more than 40 home runs and 100 RBI in three straight years, leading all of baseball with 48 homers last season.
Davis has also increased his home run and RBI totals in each of his three seasons with the A's. There's no reason to believe he'll slow down now.
Defensive MVP: Matt Chapman
Not only is Chapman the best defensive player in Oakland -- he's the best defender in the AL, and possibly all of baseball.
Last season, the A's third baseman led MLB with 29 defensive runs saved en route to winning the AL's Platinum Glove Award as the best defensive player in the league. Chapman's combination of agility, quickness, range and arm strength make him the frontrunner to win the award again in 2019.
Overall MVP: Matt Chapman
Chapman gets the slight edge over Davis because of his defense. Davis will almost certainly lead the team in home runs and RBI again, but Chapman might not be far behind.
Last season, the 25-year-old slashed an impressive .278/.356/.508, and was especially productive in the second half of the season. As he continues to improve at the plate, Chapman could challenge for AL MVP.
Best starting pitcher: Frankie Montas
This choice could come to a surprise as many, but the A's have always believed in Montas' potential to become a front-line starter.
The 26-year-old right-hander showed flashes of dominance last season, and was even better this spring. Montas features an overpowering fastball and slide,r and has added a splitter this year. That led to him allowing just one earned run in 16 innings during the spring, with 16 strikeouts.
Best relief pitcher: Blake Treinen
The A's have plenty of talented relievers to choose from, but Treinen is arguably the best closer in all of baseball.
The 30-year-old right-hander is coming off one of the best seasons in MLB history, recording 38 saves, 100 strikeouts, and a ridiculous 0.78 ERA in 80 1/3 innings. There's almost no way Treinen can approach those numbers again, but his devastating sinker and slider will ensure he remains hard to hit.
Best newcomer: Jurickson Profar
Profar enjoyed a breakout season last year in Texas, hitting .254/.335/.458 with 20 home runs, 35 doubles, and 77 RBI, all career-highs. The switch-hitter should build off that success in his first season with the A's.
The 26-year-old will also be valuable in the field, where he can play every infield position. He primarily will play second base but can also help fill in at first until Matt Olson returns from injury.
[RELATED: Breaking down A's biggest competition in AL West]
Best rookie: Jesús Luzardo
Luzardo was recently shut down for four to six weeks with a rotator cuff strain, but he is already feeling better. Of course, the A's will be extremely cautious with the 21-year-old, who is ranked as the top left-handed pitching prospect in all of baseball.
If he gets a chance to pitch later this season, Luzardo could make a massive impact.