Athletics Close To Deal With Brian Fuentes

8:09pm: The two sides are closing in on a two-year deal worth about $10.5MM, according to Jon Heyman of SI (via Twitter).

6:55pm: Expect the A's to announce the signings with Fuentes and Balfour on Tuesday or Wednesday, according to Joe Stiglich of the Bay Area News Group (via Twitter).

5:08pm: The deal calls for Fuentes to get more than $5MM per year and will include "lots" of closing incentives, a source told Rosenthal (via Twitter).

4:50pm: Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports says (via Twitter) that it is expected to be a two-year deal with an option for a third.

3:36pm: The Athletics are close to finalizing a deal with Brian Fuentes, reports Steve Phillips of AOL FanHouse (on Twitter). We heard that Oakland was pushing to sign the free agent lefty just yesterday. ESPN's Buster Olney says the deal isn't done just yet (Twitter link).

The A's have remade their team quite a bit this offseason, facilitating trades for David DeJesus and Josh Willingham while signing Grant Balfour and Hideki Matsui as free agents. Fuentes would join Balfour in an already strong bullpen that features Michael Wuertz, Craig Breslow, Brad Ziegler, and All-Star closer Andrew Bailey.

ESPN's Buster Olney pointed out that geography could work in Oakland's favor since Fuentes if from nearby Merced. The Blue Jays were also considered a serious suitor to sign the lefty reliever, and both the Yankees and Rays were connected to him earlier this month. Fuentes was said to be seeking Scott Downs money a few weeks ago, though it's likely that his asking price has since come down.

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