Brandon Moss was arguably the most valuable singing of the 2011/2012 offseason for the A’s. The minor league deal signed by Moss turned out to be a huge reward as he became an everyday player and was one of the best stories of the surprising A’s 2012 run to the AL West title. His .291 AVG and 21 HR in less than 300 at-bats were remarkable. His 2013 season was just as good as well hitting .256 with 30 HR in less than 450 at-bats. Moss has certain intangibles that make him a player everyone wants on their team. The reason Moss has become a fan favorite in Oakland is his work ethic, easy-going attitude, and unmovable and infectious smile He fits the profile of the city of Oakland.
The A’s have made a significant amount of moves this offseason including the trade for Craig Gentry and the quiet signing of utility man Nick Punto. This has led to a crowded infield and outfield much like in 2013 as we head into the 2014 season. One player that seems to be in the thick of both crowds is none other than Brandon Moss. Where does Moss fit into the roster in 2014? Surprisingly his past experiences playing for multiple teams will help him out.
With Chris Young and Seth Smith departing the first obvious hole Moss could fill would be DH. The addition of Craig Gentry and the likely addition of either Michael Taylor or Corey Brown create a potential platoon partner for Moss on a regular basis. The one downside in this scenario is Moss would not see much of the field sans an injury.
The resigning of Daric Barton to a non-guaranteed deal at first base complicates matters just a bit. To go along with Barton, the A’s have Alberto Callaspo and Nate Freiman who will all see time at first base (Freiman is the only natural right handed hitter in the group). Barton may have played himself (to the chagrin of many A’s fans) back into a regular platoon role because of his defense and high on base percentage. Moss played first base regularly in 2012 and he has certainly shown he is capable of handling the position. However, with a crowd already gathered it’s hard to see just where Moss fits in at first base.
The outfield is where Moss saw a huge chunk of time in the 2013 season. With Yoenis Céspedes, Coco Crisp, Josh Reddick, Craig Gentry, and either Michael Taylor or Corey Brown in the fold in the outfield again it is hard to see just where Moss fits in. The only scenario where Moss would be playing the outfield again is in the case of an injury.
These all sound like situations where Moss would only be playing in the case of injuries. The good thing is Moss over the course of his career has played nearly every position on the field and can be placed anywhere without any push back. He has played third, first, and he outfield in his career bringing the pop in his bat along with him making him an extremely dangerous and valuable commodity. Could he be on the trade block? Possibly. Most likely scenario? Moss will see time in the outfield and at first spelling Céspedes and Barton respectively while spending the majority of the season as the A’s main designated hitter.