Billy Beane and David Forst insisted the A's would be buyers at the trade deadline, and Saturday they followed through on that promise.
The A's acquired 28-year-old reliever Jeurys Familia from the Mets in exchange for minor leaguers Bobby Wahl and Will Toffey, along with $1 million in international slot money. Familia is owed a little over $3 million for the rest of the season, before he's set to become a free agent.
"Adding a reliever right now was the best option," said A's general manager David Forst. "We thought (Familia) was the best guy out there."
"For already having a good bullpen, to be able to bring in an arm like this, it's pretty significant," added manager Bob Melvin.
Perhaps most importantly, the A's were able to acquire Familia, a former All-Star closer, without losing any of their top prospects.
Wahl, 26, has had a strong season for Triple-A Nashville, going 3-2 with a 2.27 ERA. But, minor-league relief pitchers are typically expendable, especially with Oakland's depth at the position.
Toffey, 23, was ranked as the 17th-best A's prospect by MLB.com this year. Of course, Oakland appears set at third base for many years to come with Matt Chapman manning the hot corner.
Familia makes the A's bullpen arguably the best in all of baseball. Oakland already had a tremendous 'pen, with Blake Treinen and Lou Trivino helping the team to a perfect 38-0 record when leading after seven innings, and 46-0 when leading after eight. With the addition of Familia, the A's have essentially shortened the game to six innings.
"(This bullpen) is as good as any one I've had," Melvin said. "After the fifth or sixth inning, we can pull the plug and run a bunch of closers out there,"
Added Forst: "We're still talking about (adding) a starter, but it's a tough market for starters," Forst said. "Some of them are expensive, both in acquisition cost and dollars, This is a way to continue to shorten up the game and help our starters that way."
Whether the A's trade for another starting pitcher or not, they have shown with this trade that they are going for it this season. And that has to make fans excited.