It’s Thursday, Athletics Nation!
It has been only a week since the MLB lockout ended, but for A’s fans the news has seemingly been non-stop. After Chris Bassitt and Matt Olson both got sent to the NL East earlier this week, yesterday morning the Oakland A’s traded Matt Chapman to the Toronto Blue Jays. Leaving Oakland fans with a bit of deja vu, their All-Star third baseman will pack his bags and head to a World Series contender in Canada.
It’s been a hard week for the Athletics faithful as the key members of the last few seasons’ teams have been dispersed across the league, and the pain isn’t likely to stop soon. While we are saying goodbye to a lot of our favourites, it does also mean we get to say hello to a number of new and future A’s. The return for Chapman from the Jays is varied: LHPs Zach Logue and Kirby Snead, infielder Kevin Smith, and 2021 1st-round draft pick Gunnar Hoglund.
Response to the trade across the baseball world has been much more focused on excitement for Vladimir Guererro Jr. to be finally settling in at first base on defense, where he’ll now be fielding putouts across the diamond from Chappy. But there is enough analysis out there of the players gained by the Athletics to form an opinion.
ESPN’s David Schoenfield gave the A’s return a C grade and drew worrying comparisons to the 2014 Josh Donaldson trade saying:
“It’s hard not to go back to the Donaldson trade because the return is so similar... This time, [Beane]’s counting on a pitcher coming off Tommy John surgery. Chapman’s rough season at the plate in 2021 certainly affected his value, but this feels a little light, especially when compared to what the A’s got back in the Olson deal.”
Keith Law from The Athletic also points out the difference in return between the Matts’ trades, adding:
“The A’s did better in the Olson trade, and on the one hand that makes sense given Olson’s superior performance in 2021 to Chapman’s. Chapman plays a more challenging position and, if you think he can hit at all like he did in 2018-19 again, offers way more upside.”
The Athletic’s Jays reporter Kaitlyn McGrath detailed the Jays players’ excitement to welcome Chapman to their team, noting the package given to the A’s is typical of the deals that the Toronto front office likes to put together.
Overall the sentiment seems to be that Chapman’s defensive skill fills a hole the Jays desperately needed, and the overall balance of the trade will come down to how Chapman’s batting goes in Toronto vs how well the three near-MLB ready prospects play out in Oakland.
The S.F. Chronicle’s Matt Kawahara got a chance to chat with Chapman before he left the clubhouse, and the third baseman mirrored many of A’s fan’s frustrations regarding the rhythm of notable Athletics moving on:
“Sometimes it’s hard when you get attached to playing with guys and teams and the fans get disappointed when Olson and Bassitt and me get traded and guys like Marcus (Semien) and Liam (Hendriks) don’t come back. But it’s something they’ve gotten used to and it’s just kind of the filter of guys around here sometimes.”
While the A’s now head to the 2022 season with question marks currently fielding the corners, the start of spring training games tomorrow will help give us an idea of who will succeed Chapman at third. We will miss our Matts dearly, and after a long lockout drought of baseball news over the winter it is very bittersweet to approach a new season with this kind of news. But as we have seen in this cycle a few times now, it won’t be long before we have new A’s favourites in our hearts.
Reactions to the Chapman Trade
Words from Chapman himself
Matt Chapman gives his initial thoughts on being traded to Toronto: pic.twitter.com/1WDUIlP2qU— Matt Kawahara (@matthewkawahara) March 16, 2022
More from Chapman as he heads out
Matt Chapman: "I think it’s still ... a possibility in Oakland, that they can get a new stadium and fill it with guys that can stay here for the long term. I hope they can get that because I think this is a great org that deserves to have that same opportunity as other teams."— Matt Kawahara (@matthewkawahara) March 16, 2022
Melissa Lockard on Chappy in A’s history
In my lifetime, I’ve seen Carney Lansford, Eric Chavez, Josh Donaldson and Chapman man the A’s hot corner. Incredible defenders all, but Chapman, to me, was the best of them. And he could probably be a GG SS if he moved there too.— Melissa Lockard (@melissalockard) March 16, 2022
A’s pitcher James Kaprielian’s first reaction
Casey Pratt cushioning Chapman’s landing
Not that it’s much consolation, but one thing the A’s have done well is send players to places that are a great fit. Chapman is an elite defender. Struggled with his hitting. Toronto is a place that could help him get that back. https://t.co/kuv4OGPtel— Casey Pratt (@CaseyPrattABC7) March 16, 2022
Our own Alex Hall on the Chappy and Donaldson trades
Let me get this straight. A's had two All-Star infielders this winter. Traded one to Alex Anthopoulos. Trading the other (a third baseman!) to the Blue Jays.— Alex Hall (@AlexHallAN) March 16, 2022
It's like they're challenging the universe for a do-over on the Donaldson Disaster.
More Chapman coverage:
- Hall: A’s trade Matt Chapman to Blue Jays for four prospects
- Hall: Scouting reports: Four new A’s prospects from Matt Chapman trade
- Nico: Matts Gone, Wild. A Blogfather’s Takes
- Schoenfield: Trade grades: Why Matt Chapman could make Toronto Blue Jays the team to beat in the AL East
- Baccellieri: Here Come the Blue Jays, the AL’s Most Delightful Juggernaut ($)
- Matheson: ‘It’s exceptionally exciting’: Chapman joins Blue Jays
- Kawahara: Shades of past trades: A’s send third baseman Matt Chapman to Blue Jays for four prospects ($)
- Clemens: Oakland Capitulates and Toronto Capitalizes in Chapman-For-Prospects swap
- Law: Blue Jays buy low on Matt Chapman with a four-player package returned to A’s ($)
- McGrath: Matt Chapman gives Blue Jays the ‘well-rounded’ third baseman they’ve been looking for ($)
- Kawahara: ‘Guys are getting traded right in front of us’: A’s react to Bassitt, Olson, Chapman exits ($)
- Hall: A’s claim Sheldon Neuse off waivers
- Hall: A’s sign Billy McKinney to minor league contract
- Hall: A’s schedule updated with 7 makeup games
- Hall: A’s trade rumors: Chapman, Manaea, Montas, Laureano
- MLB.com: Yanks, A’s ralk SP deal (report); Voit trade likely?
- Ravani: A’s Howard Terminal ballpark faces ‘major setback’ after key state panel doesn’t endorse changes at the site ($)
- Killion: Clock is ticking on A’s in Oakland as players get dealt, fans despair ($)
- Lockard: A look at Cristian Pache, J.T. Ginn, Gunnar Hoglund and the rest of the new group of A’s prospects ($)
- Boerk: Newcomers Langeliers, Pache bringing winning mentality to Oakland
- Callis: Here are the Top 10 catching prospects (Soderstrom, Langeliers on list)
MLB News & Interest
- Hall: MLB transactions update: Freddie Freeman, Kris Bryant, Seiya Suzuki, Zack Greinke, Kyle Schwarber all sign free agent contracts on Wednesday
- Adams: Fernando Tatis Jr. Undergoes Wrist Surgery
- Drellich: MLB’s collective bargaining agreement: Guide to the changes in the 2022-26 labour deal ($)
- McDaniel, Schoenfield: MLB trade candidate tiers: Players most likely to move before Opening Day —and best fits
- Sarris: Quick analysis of every single deal in the first 5 days of baseball’s post-lockout madness ($)
- ESPN: Baseball is back! What we’re most excited to see this MLB season
- Leitch: Division of titans: AL East could be a beautiful mess this season
- Carleton: Is DHing Bad for Polar Bears ($)
- Petriello: Every possible landing spot for Correa, ranked 30 to 1
- Franco: Adley Rutschman Shut Down 2-3 Weeks Due To Triceps Strain
- Szymborski: Projecting Seiya Suzuki
- Schultz: Ray Gibson opens up about coming out as the transgender son of a Baseball Hall of Famer
- Today in Baseball History
Best of Twitter
A preview of MLB’s upcoming international games
MLB’s plans for international play from now until 2026: pic.twitter.com/c89C3cdIuX— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) March 16, 2022
Dave Kaval gives updates on stadium topics
A significant few exchanges: (to be fair I asked about the parallel path)— Casey Pratt (@CaseyPrattABC7) March 16, 2022
"This is as consequential as it gets, if they vote no, the project is dead."
"We made another offer on a site in the last week and we hope to have a final site we can announce shortly." pic.twitter.com/MsPh09rsl3
A shortened hot stove season means moves happen fast
The speed of this tear down would make Charlie Finley blush— Melissa Lockard (@melissalockard) March 16, 2022
A first look at a future A’s catcher Shea Langeliers
Newcomer Cristian Pache looks at-home in green and gold already
Brodie Brazil reminds us that Mr. Beane’s Wild Ride isn’t without its successes
You can never forget about Brett Anderson, he won’t let you.
Did I die and nobody told me?— Brett Anderson (@_BAnderson30_) March 16, 2022
Doo’s back in DC
Sean Wick— Sean Doolittle (@whatwouldDOOdo) March 17, 2022
Remember that even when there’s bad news, we have baseball games right around the corner