Aug 3, 2012, 6:59 PM EST
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Kurt Suzuki was hitting .218 with one homer and 13 RBI in 75 games with Oakland.
Updated at 4:55 p.m.
Though he expressed confidence all along in his current catching crew and didn’t feel the need to acquire a veteran, rental backup for Jesus Flores, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo did clarify he would be willing to make a deal if a player signed for multiple years was available.
Rizzo found that player today, acquiring Kurt Suzuki from the Athletics in exchange for minor league David Freitas, a move that brings a veteran, starting catcher to a a first-place club that has been beset with injuries at the position all season.
Suzuki, 28, was hitting only .218 with one homer, 13 RBI and .250 on-base percentage in 75 games with Oakland this season, but he’s thrown out 38 percent of basestealers and according to manager Davey Johnson will provide “more veteran presence” during a pennant race.
Johnson described Suzuki as “a No. 1 catcher,” and Rizzo said he was acquired to be a part of not only this year’s pennant contenders but next year’s as well. The career .254 hitter and strong handler of pitching staffs is still due about $1.8 million for the remainder of this season and will make $6.45 million in 2013, but the A’s are picking up an unspecified amount of his contract.
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