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Kurt Suzuki was hitting .218 with one homer and 13 RBI in 75 games with Oakland.
Though he expressed confidence all along in his current catching crew and didn't feel the need to acquire a veteran, rental backup for Jesus Flores, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo did clarify he would be willing to make a deal if a player signed for multiple years was available.
Rizzo found that player today, acquiring Kurt Suzuki from the Athletics in exchange for minor league David Freitas, a move that brings a veteran, starting catcher to a a first-place club that has been beset with injuries at the position all season.
Suzuki, 28, was hitting only .218 with one homer, 13 RBI and .250 on-base percentage in 75 games with Oakland this season, but he's thrown out 38 percent of basestealers and according to manager Davey Johnson will provide "more veteran presence" during a pennant race.
Johnson described Suzuki as "a No. 1 catcher," and Rizzo said he was acquired to be a part of not only this year's pennant contenders but next year's as well. The career .254 hitter and strong handler of pitching staffs is still due about $1.8 million for the remainder of this season and will make $6.45 million in 2013, but the A's are picking up an unspecified amount of his contract.