The Oakland A’s acquired starting pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel from the Chicago Cubs on Friday in exchange for prospects Addison Russell and Billy McKinney, pitcher Dan Straily and a player to be named.
Samardzija, 29, was expected to be traded after rejecting a five-year, $85 million deal from the Cubs. He is in the midst of a career year with a 2.83 ERA and 103:31 K:BB ratio in 108 innings, and will bolster the A’s rotation as they try to hold off the Los Angeles Angels in the A.L. West.
A 2012 first-round pick, Russell was the A’s top position prospect at shortstop, while outfielder McKinney, a 2013 first-round pick, was the team’s second-ranked prospect.
Russell is the fifth-rated prospect in the game, according to Baseball America. He joins a crowded shortstop position for the Cubs, who have 24-year-old All-Star Starlin Castro in the majors and top prospect Javier Baez (Baseball America’s seventh-rated prospect) at Triple-A.