A’s Acquire LHP Fernando Abad from Nationals for Minor Leaguer John Wooten

The Oakland A’s picked up relief pitcher Fernando Abad from the Washington Nationals on Monday for Single-A outfielder John Wooten.

Abad, 27, amassed a 3.35 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 32/10 in 37 2/3 innings (39 games) for the Nationals in 2013. Despite that, the left-hander was designated for assignment last week to free up space on Washington’s 40-man roster.

If hard-throwing A’s reliever Sean Doolittle assumes closing duties in 2014, which is a very possible scenario should Grant Balfour sign with another team as expected, Abad could presumably assume a middle-relief role with the A’s. His presence also adds a third left-hander out of the bullpen, joining Jerry Blevins and Doolittle.

Wooten, 22, hit .257 with 20 home runs in 133 games in 2013 for the A’s Single-A affiliate and wasn’t generally considered one of Oakland’s top prospects.

On the surface, this definitely seems like it could be one of Billy Beane‘s trademark under-the-radar acquisitions, especially if Abad makes the team out of spring training and becomes a bullpen factor next season.

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