Having freed up some money in today’s earlier trade, the A’s put some of that money immediately to use by bringing starter Mike Fiers back into the fold. Fiers and the A’s have agreed to a one-year, $3.5MM deal, per the Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal (via Twitter). Fiers is a client of BASH Baseball.
The A’s were the only team to make an offer to Fiers, notes Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, though Fiers had also made clear his desire to return to Oakland. Still, given Fiers notoriety as the whistleblower of the Astros sign-stealing scandal, it’s interesting to note the lack of interest league-wide. Of course, his pitching profile isn’t exactly one that generates bidding wars in free agency, typically speaking.
He’s coming off a 4.58 ERA/4.94 FIP season over 59 innings for the A’s with a 35 percent groundball rate, very low 14.4 strikeout rate, and above-average 6.2 percent walk rate. As a contact-friendly flyball artist, Fiers’ game is particularly well-suited for the spacious confined of the Coliseum in Oakland. Since joining the A’s mid-season in 2018, Fiers’ raw run prevention numbers have routinely outperformed SIERA and fielding independent pitching metrics, thanks largely to low BABIP numbers.