A pair of playoff hopefuls made moves Sunday to try and fill glaring needs before what each plans to be a long postseason run.
The Oakland A's and Milwaukee Brewers each added a big name on the final day to make a transaction that will leave acquired players eligible for the playoff roster. The A's added left-handed slugger Adam Dunn and the Brewers brought in Jonathan Broxton to add a power arm to the bullpen.
Oakland has struggled offensively since the July 31st trade deadline that saw them trade away their cleanup hitter, Yoenis Cespedes. Though the Athletics' lineup features many above-average offensive threats, Cespedes assumed the role of the most feared hitter on the roster. The A's went just 12-17 in August and now find themselves in the thick of an American League Wild Card race. So they sent minor league pitcher Nolan Sanburn to Chicago for Adam Dunn.
Dunn, who brings 460 career home runs to the A's lineup, all but announced that this would be his final season when the news broke that he was headed to Oakland. The slugger known for his mammoth home runs and huge strikeout numbers has never been to the playoffs. Oakland gives him that chance. And he brings a formidable power threat to a lineup in need of a jolt of energy.
Meanwhile, the Milwaukee Brewers made a move to bolster their 23rd-best bullpen in the MLB on Sunday afternoon - welcoming Jonathan Broxton to a group whose ERA sits a 3.86.
Broxton comes over from Cincinnati in exchange for two players to be named later. In his best season as a closer, Broxton recorded 36 saves for the Dodgers in 2009 with an ERA of 2.61. He's been even more effective this season setting up games for Aroldis Chapman. Broxton has maintained his devastating velocity to post a 1.86 ERA and a WHIP of just 1.01. He figures to take over the main duty of bridging leads over to Francisco Rodriguez, who has 39 saves on the year.
The hefty righty is signed through 2016, but his deal shifts to a mutual club/player option in each of those two remaining years. The Brewers will pay him about $1 million for the rest of the season.
Oakland sits five games behind LA in the AL West and holds a relatively comfortable lead in the Wild Card. Milwaukee fell back into a tie with St. Louis in the NL Central Sunday after leading for just about the entire season.