One of the big issues in recent years for the Oakland Athletics has been the inability to attract solid free agents. The most notable example was Adrian Beltre who was offered a lot of money several times but repeatedly turned down the A's. The pitcher-friendly dimensions of the Oakland Coliseum affect that decision, but it is possible coaching decisions may have played into that.
Now that Bob Melvin has inked a three year contract extension with the A's, some folks think the decision could be valuable in re-signing their own free agents while also attracting outside free agents. Josh Willingham is one example of players openly saying the decision increases their chances of returning to Oakland. Willingham has had a very solid season for the A's and consistently brought pop to the middle of the order. He could be a solid building block for the team to take the next step back to contention in 2012.