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Oakland Athletics Wiretap

A's Looking To Part With Zito For Milledge Or Jackson

Monday's signing of Esteban Loaiza could spell the end of Barry Zito's career in Oakland, given the team's surfeit of pitching and its need for a right-handed power hitter.

A's general manager Billy Beane told reporters not to jump to conclusions about Loazia's signing, saying, "I wouldn't necessarily read into it that it's a precursor to anything coming down the pike.''

Still, Zito will be a free agent after the 2006 season. Tim Hudson was entering the final year of his contract when he was traded to Atlanta in December. Zito is also the team's most expensive pitcher, at $8.5 million, though, according to Beane, under new owner Lewis Wolff, the A's will not have to move Zito in order to make room for Loaiza's salary. There might be enough money in the A's budget even to add a free-agent hitter, although not a big-ticket item such as Paul Konerko. Beane said the A's have had some talks with free-agent hitters, although nothing serious has developed yet.

Chances are that the A's will need to part with Zito in order to get a top-flight young hitter such as Mets prospect Lastings Milledge or Arizona's Conor Jackson or Carlos Quentin. (Harden, Haren and Blanton are essentially off-limits when it comes to trade talks.) The Rangers also have expressed interest in Zito and they have Alfonso Soriano to offer, but Soriano is likely to earn $10 million or more in arbitration.

Beane called acquiring another bat "the next order of business.''

Via SF Chronicle


A's Bring In Loaiza

The Oakland A's today announced that they have agreed to terms with right-handed pitcher Esteban Loaiza on a three-year contract through 2008 with a club option for 2009.

Loaiza was 12-10 with a 3.77 ERA in 34 games, all starts, with Washington in 2005. He struck out 173 and walked just 55 in 217.0 innings. After starting the year 1-4 with a 3.61 ERA in 11 starts over the first two months of the season, Loaiza went 11-6 with a 3.86 ERA in 23 starts after June 1. The right-handed Loaiza finished second on the Nationals in wins, innings pitched and strikeouts and his games started tied for eighth most in the National League.

Via MLB.com


Rangers Interested In Dotel

The Rangers have expressed interest in signing Octavio Dotel, the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram reports.

Dotel, who underwent Tommy John surgery in June, could be ready to pitch again in April. He would assume setup duties for the Rangers behind closer Francisco Cordero.

Via Yahoo!/Star-Telegram


Oakland Could Sign Nomar Or Thomas

Oakland looms as a possible destination for Nomar Garciaparra or Frank Thomas, although Thomas could return for a 17th season with the White Sox if Paul Konerko goes elsewhere.

Via Chicago Tribune


Beane Testing Waters On Zito

Athletics general manager Billy Beane is gauging the market for ace Barry Zito.

Last winter he traded both Tim Hudson and Mark Mulder.

Via Newsday


Athletics Nov 2005 Archive