The Oakland Athletics have finalized their blockbuster trade with the Chicago Cubs, strengthening their starting rotation with a bold move that cost the AL West leaders a couple of top prospects.
Oakland acquired right-handers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel from Chicago for minor leaguers Addison Russell, Billy McKinney, Dan Straily and a player to be named. The deal was announced on Saturday.
Samardzija and Hammel join Scott Kazmir, Sonny Gray and Tommy Milone in one of the majors’ best rotations. Samardzija has a 2.83 ERA in 17 starts this year, while Hammel is 8-5 with a 2.98 ERA.
JURRJENS RECOVERS — Jair Jurrjens was breathing a little easier Saturday after the tightness in his chest turned out to be nothing more than a scare.
The newly acquired Colorado Rockies pitcher was taken to a nearby hospital following his start Friday night against the Los Angeles Dodgers after struggling to catch his breath.
Jurrjens said X-rays and blood work revealed nothing out of the ordinary and his shortness of breath may simply be due to the altitude in the Mile High City.
“Super scary,” said Jurrjens, who made his first big league start in a year. “Every time I wanted to take a deep breath, I wasn’t able to. Just got tighter and tighter.”
The 28-year-old was acquired in a trade with Cincinnati on Wednesday to bolster a Rockies rotation ravaged by injuries and never had time to acclimatize to the thin air.
SURGERY POSSIBLE — St. Louis Cardinals lefty Jaime Garcia told reporters he may need additional shoulder surgery because he’s experiencing nerve issues and numbness in his hand.
Garcia’s comments came as news to general manager John Mozeliak, who said he hadn’t discussed the situation with the player.
Mozeliak said Saturday the Cardinals had basically ruled Garcia out for the rest of the year and that Garcia had consulted with team trainers. But he said the team believed other options had not been explored.
AROUND THE LEAGUE — Brewers right fielder Ryan Braun left a game against the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday with spasms in his lower back. ... David Wright is back in the New York Mets’ lineup after missing seven games with an injured left shoulder. ... San Francisco Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval left Saturday’s game in the first inning with a left elbow bruise after he was hit while swinging at a pitch.