The A’s have been said to be looking for catching depth for the past two weeks or so, and word trickled in on the Twittersphere tonight that they have re-acquired Kurt Suzuki from the Washington Nationals.
The San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser broke the news:
— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) August 23, 2013
Washington Times Nationals writer Amanda Comak revealed a bit more about the deal:
The #nats have traded Kurt Suzuki back to the Oakland A’s, according to multiple sources. Believe Nats getting pitching prospect in return.
— Amanda Comak (@acomak) August 23, 2013
The A’s sent Single-A pitching prospect Dakota Bacus to Washington in return for Suzuki and cash considerations.
Suzuki, as is unsurprising to those that have followed the A’s for a few years, isn’t doing much offensively this season: he has a line of .223/.284/.311 in 280 plate appearances (spread over 74 games).
He hadn’t played much recently for the Nationals, presumably making him available to the A’s as a viable option for catching depth. John Jaso doesn’t seem to be progressing quickly enough from his concussion and associated maladies that would indicate he’d be anywhere close to being able to play again this season.
Derek Norris suffered a fractured toe during Wednesday afternoon’s loss to the Seattle Mariners, and while he isn’t expected to miss a significant amount of time, his injury put Oakland in a tight spot – relying on Stephen Vogt to start as much as possible wasn’t an ideal situation. Norris might be headed to the 15-day D.L., though, creating an easy way for Suzuki to assume a role in the A’s everyday lineup for the interim.
Again, Suzuki’s acquisition is probably more of a depth/defensively-minded pickup rather than an offensive one. David Freitas, the minor league catcher the A’s acquired from Washington after shipping Suzuki there last August, is playing well for Triple-A Sacramento. He was seen by some recently as an option for the A’s to remedy the catching situation right now, but for now it appears that Freitas might have to crack the September call-ups in order to make his A’s debut this season.