The Athletics are shaking up their bullpen, designating right-handers Jeurys Familia and Domingo Acevedo for assignment, per a team announcement. Righty Adam Oller was also optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas. In a set of corresponding moves, righties Spencer Patton, Austin Pruitt and Rico Garcia have all had their contracts selected from Triple-A.
Familia, 33, returned to the A’s for a second stint late in spring training, after the D-backs cut him loose late in spring training. The former Mets closer had enjoyed a strong showing in camp with Arizona and landed a big league deal with Oakland, but things haven’t gone well in his return to the Coliseum. Through 12 2/3 innings, Familia has been tagged for a 6.39 ERA, due in no small part to a sky-high 20.3% walk rate.
It’s been a tough two years for Familia, who was sharp with the Mets from 2020-21 but was roughed up for a 6.09 ERA in 44 1/3 frames between the Phillies and Red Sox in 2022. Familia’s fastball, which once averaged better than 97 mph, sat at what was then a career-low 95.6 mph between those two teams last year. This season, he’s averaged 94.8 mph on the pitch.
As for the 29-year-old Acevedo, his bottom-line run prevention numbers are even more jarring. In 9 1/3 innings out of the bullpen, he’s been clobbered for 11 runs on 16 hits (two homers), a pair of walks and a hit batter with seven punchouts. The resulting 10.61 ERA is more than triple the strong 3.33 mark he posted in 67 2/3 innings for the A’s during the 2022 season.
Acevedo’s velocity hasn’t changed — his 93.2 mph average heater is an exact match with his 2022 velocity — nor has he made any radical alterations to his pitch selection/usage. However, he’s seen his swinging-strike rate plummet from 15.6% to 8.8%, while his opponents’ chase rate has fallen from 35.6% to 29%. While he’s undoubtedly had some poor fortune in terms of batted balls (.400 BABIP), Acevedo also just isn’t missing many bats and is getting chases off the plate at a below-average rate after excelling in both those areas a year ago.
Pruitt returns to the A’s for a second season after spending the bulk of the 2022 campaign in their bullpen and pitching to a 4.23 ERA in 55 1/3 innings. The A’s removed him from the 40-man roster but re-signed him to a minor league deal this past offseason, and he’s begun the year with a 2.30 ERA, 25.8% strikeout rate and 8.1% walk rate in 15 2/3 innings of Triple-A ball. Pruitt has only fanned 17.4% of his Major League opponents, so he’s not likely to keep missing bats at this level, but he also boasts a very strong 5.3% walk rate in his MLB career.
The 35-year-old Patton has had the most MLB experience in recent seasons. Patton, who starred for NPB’s Yokohama DeNA BayStars for several years before returning to MLB with the Rangers in 2021, pitched to a 3.83 ERA in 49 1/3 innings with Texas in 2021-22. He had a very strong ’21 season, fanning 27.9% of his opponents against an 8.7% walk rate, but Patton’s velocity dipped by more than a mile per hour in 2022 as his walk and strikeout rates spiked in the wrong directions. Through 8 1/3 innings with Las Vegas this season, he’s allowed four runs on 11 hits and four walks with 10 strikeouts.
Garcia, 29, has appeared in three big league seasons, splitting a total of 24 innings between the Rockies, Giants and Orioles. He has a grisly 6.38 ERA in that time and has issued more walks than strikeouts. However, he’s sitting on a 2.03 ERA in 13 1/3 innings so far in Las Vegas, with a hefty 32.8% strikeout rate and 18% swinging-strike rate against a more troublesome 15.5% walk rate.
Yeah well this is the time for the A’s to keep making changes to see if things can at least turn a little bit. I like Domingo Acevedo so hopefully he goes unclaimed and stays in Oakland…
I wonder if the 2,500 in attendance yesterday would be surprised at these moves?
Why would they dfa Acevedo?
out of options.
@OaklandA’sFan: Umm, maybe because he sucks?
How exactly did Acevedo become so hittable all of the sudden?
After cal Raleigh got ahold of him everything went down hill
Garcia was a decent mop-up arm last year in the bigs. Reliably average.
Acevedo needs to be picked up.
If Familia can’t even stick with the A’s then it’s probably the end of the road for him.
Since when did Familia breed contempt?
How about maybe removing Familia from the closer role instead of demoting him (laughingstock A’s)
Adam Oller is not a major league pitcher. There’s no reason he should be above AA ball. The Mets moved him up to AAA and he got lucky in a few starts and the A’s got swindled. All the hype around Oller you would think he throws left-handed.
Vince Ferragamo's Dog
Keep throwing s#&t @the wall n hope sumthin sticks, Beane is still in advisory role what happen to Moneyball n finding value where others could not, dumpster fire by the bay
Acevedo was their best reliever last year, but struggled. oller sucks, useless trade return
a shameful organization
My question is when was Familia a member of the D-Backs? His Baseball Reference page has him wearing a D-Backs cap. Or maybe I’m being dumb here…
He signed a minor league deal with the DBacks this past off-season
Ah that would be why thank you for the information!
Familia was a killer pitching for the Phillies last year….glad he was dfa’d. But hey no hard feelings as I am happy that he got to his 10yr service time.
Guy had a lot of quality seasons….
Whenever he rides off into the sunset, he’s got the 10yr to add to his career earnings.
Familia, He of the hanging sinker
No team needs the #1 draft choice more than Oakland. Too bad they aren’t guaranteed any longer.
Hopefully they avoid NFL Qb prospects this year though…..
The kyler murray pick was a joke for that franchise imo. Oakland needs to hit on picks, not take a, pun intended, hail mary.
Murray was looking for cheddar. Saw a couple interviews back then on espn etc, due to his “dual sport” options. Even given his youth, the answers he gave should have been red flags. It was all me me me. Am in no way bitter, but it was pretty obvious he was “social media hunting” along with his money.
My question was how did they not see that in interviews?
Guess batters have become too Familia with the offerings…
Today is my birthday!
I mean a shake up like this can only help. It cannot possibly get any worse…
A 94.8 mph fastball while not 97 can still get the job done for Familia. He needs to be matched with the right AAA pitching coach to rehabilitate his career. At this point, he can’t do it on a MLB roster but I don’t think ya give up on him quite yet. Any club that picks him up should pair him with a sports psychologist as well.