In a weekend usually shrouded in rumors and players leaving Oakland, the A’s have been relatively quiet this trade deadline season. As of this article, they have only made one trade, sending Billy Burns to Kansas City in return for Brett Eibner.
Burns quickly became a fan favorite in Oakland last season, running his way to 26 steals and a 5th place finish in American League Rookie of the Year votes. On top of his blistering speed, Burns flashed some power as well last season; enough to warrant the A’s thinking they had found their long term third outfielder to complement Coco Crisp and Josh Reddick.
Injuries to both Crisp and Reddick allowed Burns to play nearly everyday this season and it wasn’t quite what Oakland brass had hoped. In 73 games this season, Burns hit just .234 with 12 RBI and 14 SB. This prompted the A’s to send him down to Triple-A Nashville on July 15th.
Brett Eibner will join Nashville in the trade. This season Eibner has seen his first taste of major league action where he hit three home runs for Kansas City. In Omaha (Kansas City’s Triple-A affiliate), he hit 11 more home runs and sported an average of .288. He is a year older than Burns at 27, but the power is impressive and that’s what Oakland is in need of right now. His defense is also highly touted, which can only help in the huge outfield at the Oakland Coliseum should he be called up.
Although this is the only move so far, the trade deadline was moved to August 1st this season, meaning there are still two days for moves to be made. Oakland has been playing well since the All-Star Break going 9-4, but is likely out of the playoff race already so now is the time to rebuild.
With many teams needing help in the outfield and on the mound, the A’s could see more players move by Monday’s deadline. Reddick has been in some rumors, as well as pitcher Rich Hill who can come off the disabled list on Thursday from a blister that has kept him off the field the last two weeks. The only player the A’s have said is off limits is Sonny Gray who has had a disappointing season anyway.
The A’s are in Cleveland taking on the Indians this weekend. With the deadline approaching, and the A’s history of making trades, it will be interesting to see who dons the white cleats for their next home stand.