A’s sign Brian Fuentes to two-year, $10.5 million deal

Here’s some quick-hitters from the Brian Fuentes media teleconference that just wrapped … The lefty reliever signed a two-year, $10.5 million deal with the A’s, with a $6.5 million club option for 2013.

–Fuentes was told by the A’s front office that Andrew Bailey is the unquestioned closer (“There’s no competition in my mind,”) but he’ll be ready for the ninth inning if needed. From what I’m told, he’ll get some save opportunities if Bailey needs a rest. Fuentes added that he’s comfortable whether he’s pitching the seventh or the ninth. “I’ve mopped up, set up, and closed. My mindset is be efficient with pitches and get guys out.”

–He says the A’s remind him of the 2010 Giants a bit — good pitching, solid role players, and a team that might be under the radar to start the season. Could he envision the A’s winning the AL West? “It’s premature to say we’re going to win the West, but certainly the opportunity is there.”

–Fuentes, 35, grew up in Merced and was a huge A’s fan. He particularly liked Mike Gallego — who just so happens to be the A’s current third-base coach — and Dave Stewart (“bulldog mentality”).

–A’s GM Billy Beane, assistant GM David Forst and manager Bob Geren impressed Fuentes by driving down to Merced and having lunch with him last Friday. I guess that’s the advantage of pursuing a free agent who lives so close to the Bay Area … Fuentes hinted that he could have signed elsewhere with opportunities to close, but that the chance to win wouldn’t have been as good. “Me and my family felt Oakland was the best place for us.”

Look for more in tomorrow’s Contra Costa Times, Oakland Tribune and San Jose Mercury News …

Joe Stiglich

  • crister

    So who got dfa’d for Fuentes?
    That Holliday deal with Colorado looks worse and worse with what’s his face being dfa’d yesterday.

  • Joe Stiglich

    Infielder Steve Tolleson was designated — 10 days for him to be traded, released or sent to minors if he clears waivers. That’s a big “if” for the A’s, because they’re hurting when it comes to shortstop depth. We don’t know if Pennington or Rosales will be healthy for much of the spring, and Eric Sogard is the only other shortstop on the 40-man roster if Tolleson gets claimed. The A’s like Sogard, but he’s more of a second baseman. … Don’t be surprised if the A’s acquire a middle infielder before camp.

    Good point about Mortensen being DFA’ed. … But Michael Taylor remains the key to that whole wheel of moves set in motion by the Holliday trade.

  • MC Hammer

    Major blunder trading for Holliday, the guys just not that much better than average. Seeing CarGo dominate is kind of sickening. Oh well..

    The good new is that on paper, this team trumps any team we’ve thrown out there in years. For the first time in a decent amount of time I’m excited for the A’s season to come around.

    Hammer time…