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Oakland Athletics general manager David Forst said he expects the newly signed Jesus Aguilar to split his time in 2023 at first base and designated hitter in an everyday role, similar to what he was doing last year with the Miami Marlins and Baltimore Orioles. The 32-year-old right-handed slugger spent most of his time with the Fish (113 games) and finished with a .235/.281/.379 slash line, .661 OPS, 16 home runs, 51 RBI, 39 runs scored and a stolen base in 507 plate appearances over 129 combined games. Aguilar still has some pop in his bat, but he'll provide little else while moving to a weak lineup in one of the most pitcher-friendly home ballparks in baseball. He can be avoided in shallow mixed leagues.
The Oakland Athletics expect starting pitchers James Kaprielian (shoulder) and Paul Blackburn (finger) to be ready for spring training, according to general manager David Forst. It's the reason the team felt comfortable trading left-hander Cole Irvin to the Baltimore Orioles this week. Kaprielian had surgery to fix the AC joint in his right-shoulder in the offseason. The 28-year-old figures to be a fixture in the A's rotation after posting a 4.23 ERA (4.63 FIP), 1.34 WHIP and 17 percent strikeout rate in a career-high 26 starts in his third MLB season in 2022. Blackburn was excellent for Oakland before a finger caused him to be shut down in July. The 29-year-old was an All-Star last for the first time last year and went 7-6 with a 4.28 ERA (4.21 FIP), 1.26 WHIP and career-high 19.1 percent strikeout rate in a career-high 21 starts in his sixth season in Oakland.
The Oakland Athletics acquired infield prospect Darell Hernaiz from the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday in exchange for left-hander Cole Irvin and minor-league right-hander Kyle Virbitsky, according to sources. Hernaiz, who is only 21 years old, spent the 2022 season with Single-A Delmarva, High-A Aberdeen and Double-A Bowie, slashing a combined .273/.341/.438 with a .779 OPS, 12 home runs, 62 RBI, 72 runs scored and 32 stolen bases in 452 plate appearances over 105 games. He spent the majority of the year at Aberdeen (60 games), hitting .305 with five homers, 29 RBI and 22 steals. The A's will continue to develop the young speedy middle infielder, but he's unlikely to make it to the Show in 2023.
The Oakland Athletics have reportedly agreed to a deal with first baseman Jesus Aguilar, per a tweet from FanSided's Robert Murray on Tuesday. Murray tweeted the following: "Free-agent first baseman Jesus Aguilar and the Oakland A's are in agreement on a contract, pending physical, according to a source familiar with the deal. First to report a deal was close: @susanslusser." Aguilar previously split the 2022 season with the Miami Marlins and Baltimore Orioles, hitting .235 with a .281 on-base percentage, 16 home runs, and a stolen base in 507 plate appearances. He'll give the A's another option at first base alongside the likes of Dermis Garcia and Seth Brown.
The Oakland Athletics signed free-agent left-hander Jake Fishman to a minor-league deal that includes a non-roster invite to major-league spring training. The 27-year-old southpaw made his big-league debut with the Miami Marlins in 2022 and made seven relief appearances, allowing five earned runs on 13 hits while walking none and striking out six in 11 innings. In 33 relief appearances for Triple-A Jacksonville in the minors, Fishman posted a 2.25 ERA and 1.05 WHIP while walking 20 and striking out 54 over 56 innings. He'll be hoping to make an impression on the rebuilding A's coaching staff next spring, but he'll likely be a long shot to make the Opening Day bullpen.