Manager Bob Melvin thought the Athletics might wait for the dust to settle closer to the July 30 MLB trade deadline before making a move, but the front office pounced early, acquiring left-handed reliever Andrew Chafin from the Chicago Cubs on Monday night.
Chafin is having the best season of his eight-year MLB career, posting a 2.06 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 39 1/3 innings over 43 games.
But Chafin's last appearance with the Cubs was his worst of the season. He allowed two hits, three earned runs and two walks while not recording an out against his former team, the Arizona Diamondbacks, on Saturday.
Chafin is a bit of a jokester and Cubs manager David Ross told reporters in Chicago that the 31-year-old reliever had a pretty funny one-liner when they were discussing the trade.
"He told me, one bad outing and he gets traded?" Ross said (H/T MLB.com). "He made me laugh pretty good at that one."
Chafin joined the A's in San Diego ahead of the series opener against the Padres, and Melvin told reporters before the game that the reliever is available to pitch Tuesday.
"Yeah, he fits in nicely," Melvin said. "Anytime you get another quality left-hander like him, who, if you look at his numbers, gets righties out as well. It adds to our depth and allows us to, whenever we need to, shorten the game and not have to throw too much at [Jake Diekman] all the time. So this is a good pick-up for us. Really good pick-up."
Chafin was drafted by the Diamondbacks with the No. 43 overall pick in 2011, was traded to the Cubs on Aug. 31, 2020, and later re-signed with Chicago prior to the 2021 season.
The Ohio native spoke to reporters before the game Tuesday, and admitted this is new territory for him.
“I don’t know s--t about the AL West," Chafin said (H/T The San Francisco Chronicle's Matt Kawahara) "Excited to be here, go out and give ‘em hell.”
The A's are a group that likes to keep things loose and have fun, and Melvin is sure Chafin won't miss a beat with his new team.
"He's a little bit of a free spirit, so he should fit in pretty well here," Melvin said. "I just talked to him a little bit last night when the trade went down. Then he just got here at 3 o'clock [Pacific time] today, so just real briefly.
"So my guess is he's going to fit right in here."