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A's Ink Cabrera

The Oakland A's and free agent shortstop Orlando Cabrera have reached an agreement on a one-year, $4 million deal, according to ESPN's Buster Olney.

Cabrera spent 2008 with the Chicago White Sox where he hit .281 with eight home runs and 57 RBI but had his best years while playing with Oakland's AL West rival the Los Angeles Angels.

By adding Cabrera, the A's have a rather formidable lineup as the 12-year veteran joins Matt Holiday, Jason Giambi and a finally healthy Eric Chavez.

The move also puts Bobby Crosby back on the trading block. Oakland had tried to move Crosby earlier in the offseason but didn't find any takers after placing the 2004 AL Rookie of the Year on unconditional waivers.

General Manager Billy Beane seems to have created an inverse of your standard Oakland A's clubhouse as he has spent this offseason acquiring hitters which he hopes will take the pressure off of a young but, of course, talented Athletics rotation.

So what do you guys think of the move? Do the A's have a shot at unseating the Angels for AL West supremacy?

By CJ Holley  |  March 2, 2009; 2:41 PM ET
Categories:  Angels , Athletics , White Sox  
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I've liked Cabrera for a while. He is an upgrade over Crosby. The ESPN story also mentions they are close to signing Nomar and that they may also bring in Dennys Reyes. This looks like an instant one year contender, frankly. A bullpen of Devine, Blevins, Reyes, Ziegler, Casilla and any of the youngsters as a long man would be one of the best in baseball, signed moneyball cheap. An infield of Giambi, Ellis, Cabrera, and Chavez, with Hannahan, Barton, and Garciaparra as backups, to go with Holliday, maybe Ryan Sweeney, and whatever sorts out in right looks formidable. Lots of young arms, too.

From a Nats perspective, there still looks like deal possibilities, both for the OF and for Nick / Willingham. I'd love Ellis, but it would take a lot. I'm not keen on Crosby because he seems like a bust since 2005. Dreadful OBP, not a great fielder, and power has disappeared. To take him off their hands, we'd have to extract something very good.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 2, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

The A's have a great shot of unseating the Angels.

They inked Cabrera for around the same salary Crosby will be making, so if they can find a taker for him they'll have quite an upgrade. Last year Cabrera hit 281/334/371. Not great numbers, but still an OPS+ of 85. He's been around 90 for the last few years. Crosby, on the other hand, hit a pathetic 237/296/349 with an OPS+ of a whopping 76, up substantially from the year before. Factor in that Cabrera has shown better range than Crosby and you've got a solid deal.

With the upgrades the A's have made at 1B, SS, 3B (with Chavez healthy), LF and DH (with Holliday moving Cust to DH), the A's have primed themselves to move from a 75-86 team with an 88 OPS+ to, in my opinion, and 85-77 team-ish with an OPS+ of at least 100.

The Angels lost their stud closer, were heart broken by Tex and lost a team leader in Garret Anderson. Now they upgraded with Abreu in LF, but 1B will be a void, 3B has no power (Figgins), SS is an unproven commodity. I'd say they'd be lucky to win 90 games. So say they're an 88 win team. That's only a 3 game difference that's easily surmountable. And the A's didn't tie any money up long term, giving them the ability to reload next year or cut and run. Also, if they're out of it they have a LOT of trade bait.

Posted by: adampschroeder | March 2, 2009 9:29 PM | Report abuse

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