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A's Acquire Tony Kemp From Cubs To Bolster Bench

Short on lefthanded reserve options, the A’s made a move on Monday to acquire utilityman Tony Kemp from the Cubs in exchange for Double-A first baseman Alfonso Rivas.

Kemp, 28, helps balance a club that entered the day with only three lefty hitters on its projected roster—first baseman Matt Olson, backup catcher Austin Allen and switch-hitting outfielder Robbie Grossman.


Alfonso Rivas, 1B
Age: 23

A fourth-round pick out of Arizona in 2018, Rivas stood out high Class A Stockton in his first full season and jumped to Triple-A to finish out the year. The lefthanded-hitting Rivas earned the nickname "Mr. Steady” from his coaches for his smooth swing, patient approach and knack for line drive contact. Rivas is a disciplined hitter, takes quality at-bats and drives the ball from line-to-line. He lacks home run power—he hit nine home runs all of last year—but he makes enough contact to project for a high average with a lot of doubles. He’s a plus defender at first base and moves well enough to play a corner outfield spot as needed.


Tony Kemp, 2B/OF
Age: 28

Kemp spent parts of four seasons as a reserve for the Astros before they traded him to the Cubs at last year’s deadline for Martin Maldonado. The 5-foot-6 Kemp is a versatile defender who can play second base and all three outfield positions, giving the A’s another multi-dimensional, infield-outfield reserve to pair with Chad Pinder. Kemp limits his strikeouts and makes contact, but he doesn’t hit the ball very hard and is an overall .233/.314/.367 hitter in his career. He will open the year on the A’s bench and is a veteran option in case Franklin BarretoSheldon Neuse or another of the A’s other young second base candidates struggle.


Astros Bring Back Martin Maldonado In Swap With Cubs

Martin Maldonado heads to Houston for a second tour, while the Cubs add much-needed speed in Tony Kemp.

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