A's bring back Anderson, Crisp for 2014
Club declines options on outfielder Young, catcher Suzuki
OAKLAND -- In a series of expected moves, the A's on Friday officially picked up options on Coco Crisp and Brett Anderson for the 2014 season, while declining options on Chris Young and Kurt Suzuki.
Crisp will make $7.5 million in what will be his fifth year with the A's, who are still exploring a multiyear deal with the veteran outfielder. Anderson, coming off yet another injury-riddled season, will take home $8 million.
Now that these decisions have been made, the A's must focus on two big ones, notably whether to make a qualifying offer of $14.1 million to free agent Bartolo Colon by Monday. They can't afford to throw that much money at closer Grant Balfour, who most assuredly will test the free-agent market.
Similarly, Young's $11 million option was much too hefty for Oakland to exercise, particularly for a player who provided limited production in a reserve role this year.
The 30-year-old outfielder, acquired from the D-backs at this time last year in exchange for Cliff Pennington and Minor Leaguer Yordy Cabrera, hit just .200 with a .280 on-base percentage in 107 games for the A's, giving them 12 home runs and 40 RBIs. His batting average was second lowest in the American League and fourth lowest in the Majors among players with 350 or more plate appearances.
In Young's place, the A's could opt to give prospect Michael Choice the opportunity to platoon at designated hitter with Seth Smith while also rotating around the outfield, though an experienced right-handed bat likely remains on their shopping list.
Young's buyout was worth $1.5 million.
Suzuki, meanwhile, held a $650,000 buyout, and his departure was anything but a surprise, since Oakland already has three other catchers returning in John Jaso, Derek Norris and Stephen Vogt.
The 30-year-old Suzuki, initially traded by the A's to the Nationals in the middle of the 2012 season before being brought back via another trade in August to offset injuries to Jaso and Norris, hit .303 with two home runs and seven RBIs in 15 games with Oakland.
Anderson, still just 25, will return to the rotation after finishing the 2013 season in the bullpen following four months on the disabled list. It was nearly four years ago that Anderson signed a four-year contract through the 2013 season, with club options for '14 and '15 ($12 million). Since, he's missed 399 games as a result of injuries.