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A's may be willing to eat most of Jim Johnson's contract in a trade. Should O's consider? (DFA)


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From Chronicle Staff Writer Susan Slusser at Yankee Stadium

Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal reported this afternoon that the A's nearly traded reliever Jim Johnson to the Marlins for a competitive-balance draft pick and a player last week, and I have confirmed that this is so with two sources. In addition, Rosenthal reported - correctly, I'm told - that the A's would still move Johnson in the right deal, and they could be willing to pick up most of the remainder of his $10 million deal to do so.

This would not be a trade to bring back immediate help or anything. The A's aren't looking to improve the club substantially by moving Johnson, who fell out of the closer's role the second week of the season. This would be to free up a roster space, essentially, especially with Eric O'Flaherty coming off the DL soon. Should Johnson be dealt before O'Flaherty joins the team, Fernando Rodriguez likely would be recalled when his minimum 10-day minor-league stay is done.

Johnson has not worked out with the A's. If - and much more like when - the team trades him, "it will be addition by subtraction," one source tells me.

It's an odd situation. Here you have a first-place team with a former All-Star who makes a big salary, he's on the trading block, and yet it's not really a big deal - it wouldn't disrupt the A's much, and no one would be wildly surprised. At this point, it might be what's best for Johnson, who has not looked comfortable at the Coliseum and who is often booed there on his home field.

I asked Johnson about the rumors today. He hadn?t heard anything about it and isn't paying attention to it, he's just focusing on his own preparations and playing tonight's game.

source - SF Gate
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I would give him a minor league deal in a heartbeat.

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When he get's release, then you can make that offer to him. If you claim him or trade for him, you get the major league deal and all that comes with it. No matter how much of the money you are on the hook for. Call it Gregg time, because he is one of your 25 from now until the day after the World Series ends. And then you get nothing for him. Because no QO.

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The game before went 11.

True enough, but the A's went with Francis for the last two innings of the game Johnson pitched. Surely he shouldn't have been the first option out of the 'pen in a close game in Baltimore (it was 4-1 when Johnson entered). The A's had used four relievers the night before, but only one of them threw more than one inning.

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