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Elephant Rumblings: What does 100 losses even get you in 2022?

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MLB: SEP 18 Athletics at Astros Photo by Leslie Plaza Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Happy Thursday, Athletics Nation!

The season is winding up and with their 54th win of the season on Tuesday, the A’s guaranteed the fact that they can’t have the worst season in Oakland history. With the 1979 A’s going 54-108 the worst that could happen is a tied record, if every remaining game this year is a loss. But at this point it seems certain that the 2022 Athletics are a 100+ loss team, however unsurprising it is for those of us who follow the team daily.

With this year’s new CBA there’s less of an incentive to be the worst in the league. No longer does 30th place net you the first overall draft pick in the following year. Now the A’s look to be tied with the MLB-worst Nationals (52-97) and Pirates (55-93) in sharing the best odds of the #1 pick in 2023. The three teams with the worst records all share a 16.5% chance of the top pick, and 4th-worst ahas a 13.25% chance.

The lottery extends backwards all the way to the top team that doesn’t make the playoffs. That’s right, the A’s could lose over 100 games in 2022, and there’s a chance (though impossibly slim) that a playoff-cusp team with a winning record like the Brewers could pick before them. Each missed pick does make things more increasingly-likely that the worst-performing teams pick early, softening missing out on the absolute top of the draft.

With just 13 games remaining, we will see if the A’s hang in that best-chance bottom three, or if they rise in the ranks and lower their percentages.

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