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Athletics interested in re-signing Semien

Thearon W. Henderson / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Oakland Athletics general manager David Forst texted shortstop Marcus Semien to tell him the team wants him back in 2021.

"I told him we would love to have him back here," Forst said, according to Martin Gallegos of "We've had an open line of communication with him and his agent. That will certainly be one of the topics for this offseason."

Semien, 30, is hitting free agency for the first time this winter and could be seeking a lofty raise, which would run counter to how the A's normally conduct business.

Oakland consistently has one of the lowest payrolls in Major League Baseball and entered 2020 ranked 24th, according to The Associated Press.

Still, A's executive vice president Billy Beane is similarly hopeful that the team can bring Semien back into the fold.

The A's could extend Semien an $18.9-million qualifying offer and still negotiate a new contract if he rejects it.

One of the longest-tenured A's, Semien was acquired from the White Sox in 2014 as part of the deal that sent Jeff Samardzija to the South Side of Chicago. The possibility of his Oakland tenure ending weighed on Semien's mind throughout the club's postseason run, which concluded Thursday.

"I thought about that in the wild-card series," Semien said, according to Shayna Rubin of The Mercury News. "I'm pretty logistical. I understand what's going on with everything and our backs were against the wall a couple of times … I took the field in the bottom of the eighth thinking, 'Is this my last time playing shortstop for this team?' I don't know."

Semien struggled throughout the summer, hitting .223 with seven home runs in 53 contests but enjoyed the best season of his career in 2019. He played all 162 games and slashed .285/.369/.522 with 33 homers, 43 doubles, and 92 RBIs while finishing third in AL MVP voting.

Closer Liam Hendriks and infielder Tommy La Stella are among other A's players hitting the open market.

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