The Oakland Athletics have agreed to terms on a two-year deal with right-handed reliever John Axford, according to a report from Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle on Wednesday afternoon.
A club announcement could come later in the week as the deal is currently pending the approval of a physical examination at this time.
According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the 32-year-old Canadian will earn $10 million over the time of his contract, including the chance to earn $4 million in incentives based on games finished.
Slusser reported last night that the two sides were nearing an agreement on a major league contract.
Axford joins a rebuilt bullpen that contains new arms such as veteran right-hander Ryan Madson who was signed to a three-year deal earlier in the week. Right-hander Liam Hendricks and left-hander Marc Rzepczynski are also new additions to the bullpen. Hendricks was brought over from the Toronto Blue Jays in a trade for another right-hander in Jesse Chavez.
With new general manager David Forst taking over duties for Billy Beane, who was promoted to executive vice president of baseball operations, there seems to be a different way of looking at this team. His main focus thus far has ultimately been pitching, but he could transfer that to the position player market as Brett Lawrie is said to be heading out soon. The Chicago White Sox are rumored to be interested in the third baseman.
Beane and Forst have worked alongside each other in the past, therefore, there is a familiarity with one another which makes for an interesting duo in the club's front office.
When told about the promotion of Forst, who was once the team's assistant general manager, Beane said, "Long overdue."
Turning back towards Axford, the 32-year-old spent the 2015 season with the Colorado Rockies where he posted a 4.20 ERA alongside a record of 4-5, while having given up 27 runs on 56 hits, four of those being home runs, in 55.2 innings pitched. Axford appeared in a total of 60 games played in 2015.
As noted by MLBTradeRumors, Oakland represents Axford's fourth organization within the past two years.
Axford was designated for assignment by the Colorado Rockies back on November 20th. Less than a week following the announcement, Axford elected for free agency.
Axford was eligible for arbitration, where he was projected to make $6.5 million, and ended up being non-tendered by Colorado.
The seven-year veteran missed a huge chunk of time in the second half of 2015 while dealing with a family issue, as opposed to a health issue himself.
In more recent news, the Athletics have lost a member of their bullpen which was the ultimate urge to bring Axford aboard, as left-hander Evan Scribner was dealt to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for minor league right-hander Trey Cochran-Gill on Tuesday night.