Top 50 Oakland Athletics

The history of the Oakland Athletics began in Philadelphia in 1901, where they were a charter member of the American League.  Under the tutelage of the legendary Connie Mack, the Athletics has two runs of glory.  The first in the second decade of the 1900s where they won the 1910, 1911 and 1913 World Series Titles. 

After years of futility, they reemerged in the late 1920s as an American League power.  They would win the 1929 and 1930 World Series, but that would be the end of their run as a power in the American League.  At least in Philadelphia anyway.

The A’s were bought and relocated to Kansas City in 1955, but they would be sold to Charlie Finlay in 1960.  After little success in KC, Finlay moved the team to California, and the Oakland Athletics were born.

Oakland would become one of the most intriguing teams in baseball both on the field and off of it, and they built a team that would win three straight World Series Titles (1972-74).  Free Agency rendered them a small market team, but they would eventually rebuild and won the World Series again in 1989.  They would follow the road of sabermetrics, and while that has not generated a title, it revolutionized the game.

This list is up to the end of the 2019 season.

Note: Baseball lists are based on an amalgamation of tenure, traditional statistics, advanced statistics, playoff statistics, and post-season accolades.

There were a lot of different players to consider when we were looking at the greatest Athletic of all-time.
Rickey Henderson is a lot of things.  He is eccentric.  He often refers to himself in the third person.  He is the greatest leadoff hitter ever.  He is the ultimate base stealer.  He was a first ballot Hall of Famer.
Jimmie Foxx was signed by the Philadelphia Athletics as a teen in 1925, and he would emerge as one of the most lethal power hitters in not just Athletic history but that of all of Baseball.
Signed in 1901, Eddie Plank would have a good rookie season for the Philadelphia Athletics, where he won 17 Games.  That is a good number, but it would take seven seasons before he had anything lower than that.
Al Simmons joined the Philadelphia Athletics when he was acquired from Milwaukee of the American Association before the 1924 Season.  He would have a great rookie season with 183 Hits and a .308 Batting Average, so it was clear that he was a good hitter, but what he would do afterward would make his first year in the Majors look, pedestrian.
Eddie Collins was signed by the Philadelphia Athletics in 1906, and by 1909 he was the team's starting Second Baseman.  That year he would swipe 63 bases and bat .347, the perfect showcase of what was to come.  Collins was part of an excellent Philadelphia team that in 1910 would win the World Series, and that season he would lead the AL in Stolen Bases with 81, which made him the first player to ever tally the 80 plus mark.
Rube Waddell’s reputation of being somewhat of an oddball was known before the Philadelphia Athletics signed him, so they knew what they were getting into.  What they may not have known was just how good he was going to be for them.
The heroics of Reggie Jackson may have been at the most viewed in New York City, but it all began with the Athletics.
Mark McGwire may have set the single season Home Run record when he was with the St. Louis Cardinals, but it was in Oakland where he first became a star and would have his greatest overall success.
Sal Bando played most of his career with the Athletics, and there was a time when he was considered one of the best Third Basemen in the American League.
Charles Albert “Chief” Bender signed as a Free Agent before the 1903 Season with the Philadelphia Athletics, and the "City of Brotherly Love" would be his home for the next 12 seasons.  Bender would be considered one of the nicest guys of the American League, but more importantly, he was one of the better hurlers in the game.
Signed by Connie Mack before the 1920 season, Eddie Rommel would find a home in Philadelphia, which would be the only team he would play for in the Majors.
When you are called "Home Run," it would make perfect sense that you would be an individual that won four Home Run Titles.  Although, this was the dead ball era, and the man in question did so with totals of 11, 10, 12, and 9.
Bert Campaneris made his debut with the Kansas City Athletics in 1964, and he would secure the starting Shortstop role for the team, which would be a role he had until he signed with the Texas Rangers after the 1976 season.
Harry Davis began his pro career in the National League in 1895, and other than leading the league in Doubles in 1897, it was reasonably non-descript as it was spent with four teams (New York Giants, Pittsburgh, Louisville, and Washington).  He played for the minor league Providence Grays in 1900 and was ready to call it a career when Connie Mack came calling.  Mack convinced Davis to play for him, and it was a win-win for both parties.
Bob Johnson was a very good player who arguably had the misfortune of playing for the Philadelphia Athletics at a time when they were not that good.  As such, many of his accomplishments went unnoticed, but that is one of the reasons why we are here.
Jim “Catfish” Hunter received his colorful nickname from his team owner, Charlie O. Finley, who felt that gave his pitcher character.  That was a recurring theme for Finley, who did similar things with other players, but this is the story about the star pitcher for Oakland in the early 70s.
Vida Blue was a unique pitcher in that he was a southpaw who known for his power.  Blue first cracked the Athletics roster in 1969 but would spend most of that year in 1970 in the minors.  Oakland thought they had something in Blue, who would begin 1971 as a starter.  What happened that year was one of the most incredible campaigns ever for an Athletics Pitcher. 
Let’s forget about some of the things that made Jose Canseco famous (or infamous).  The steroid use.  The admission of steroid use.  Throwing other players under the bus by (accusing) discussing their steroid use.  The boxing.  Madonna.  The baseball that bounced off his head for a Home Run.