Former SF Giants corner infielder becomes 4th player from 2023 team to join the A's this offseason

2024 San Francisco Giants Spring Training
2024 San Francisco Giants Spring Training / Andy Kuno/San Francisco Giants/GettyImages
facebooktwitterreddit

The 2024 Oakland A's will look suspiciously like the 2023 SF Giants. Corner infielder J.D. Davis has agreed to join Oakland on a one-year deal according to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. He becomes the fourth player from the 2023 team to join the local rivals this winter.

Former SF Giants corner infielder becomes 4th player from 2023 team to join the A's this offseason

Rosenthal reports that Davis will earn $2.5 million in 2024 with a chance to earn an additional $1 million in incentives. The Giants are still on the hook for $1.1 million after cutting ties with him earlier this week. Davis will have some familiarity in Oakland with Alex Wood, Ross Stripling, and Scott Alexander joining this club this winter, all of whom spent the 2023 season in San Francisco.

Davis was scheduled to earn $6.9 million in 2024 after winning his arbitration case this offseason. However, going to arbitration meant that his deal was not guaranteed until Opening Day, so the Giants released him before then. San Francisco saved about $5.8 million in the process.

While it was a bitter pill to swallow, Davis reportedly had interest from at least seven teams, including the New York Mets. His foray into free agency was short-lived and he lands with a team that should off ample playing time in 2024.

The 30-year-old infielder has experience at first base, third base, and DH. Third base will be where he can provide the biggest boost for Oakland. A's third basemen tallied a .192/.271/.285 line (59 wRC+) with an 8.9 percent walk rate, 23.6 percent strikeout rate, and a .093 ISO in 2023. Overall, that position was worth -1.0 fWAR. The wRC+ and fWaR ranked 30th and 29th, respectively, in baseball last season.

Davis is coming off of a solid year in which he registered a .248/.325/.413 line (104 wRC+) with 18 home runs, 69 RBI, and 61 runs in 546 plate appearances. Before the 2023 season, he was known as more of a bat-first player, but his defense did show signs of improvement last season. Overall, he recorded -11 Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) and +5 Outs Above Average (OAA) at the hot corner.

While the defensive metrics were mixed, OAA is often seen as a better evaluation of a player's defense. For what it is worth, he passed the eye test.

Joining Oakland will provide an opportunity for Davis. However, there is an unknown quality that comes with it as well. The status of the relocation efforts are unknown, but a temporary move to the Sacramento River Cats' home field after this season is not out of the question. The players remain in the dark about these efforts as well.

This will be an important year for Davis. He is one year away from hitting free agency. He was a free agent earlier this week, but still within the confines of his rookie deal. Free agency has not been kind to many players this season, but the seven-year veteran could position himself well for next year with a solid season in 2024.