The Athletics have agreed to terms with Brian Fuentes on a two-year contract that includes a club option for 2013, the team announced. Terms of the deal are unknown but Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (via Twitter) reported that the deal would be for two years with an option for a third at more than $5MM per season. Meanwhile, Jon Heyman of SI (via Twitter) reported that the two sides were working on a two-year deal worth roughly $10.5MM.
Fuentes, 35, registered a 2.81 ERA last season with 8.8 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 for the Angels and Twins. The 6'4" left-hander is represented by the Beverly Hills Sports Council.
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 is 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.
Steve Phillips of AOL Fanhouse first reported (via Twitter) that the two sides were close to finalizing an agreement.
Mike Axisa contributed to this post.