A's, Suzuki mutually excited about reunion
BALTIMORE -- Kurt Suzuki exchanged hugs with several teammates in the Oakland clubhouse prior to Friday's series opener after being traded from the Nationals.
Then, it was off to find a batting practice jersey and a suitable pair of shoes.
"It feels good," said Suzuki, who spent the first 5 1/2 seasons of his career with Oakland. "I'm shocked, to say the least. I mean, I couldn't be happier to come back where it all started and help this team get into the playoffs."
The A's acquired Suzuki from Washington for right-handed pitching prospect Dakota Bacus. Suzuki batted .222 with three home runs and 25 RBIs in 79 games for the Nationals this season.
Suzuki said he was happy with the time he spent in Washington, but was glad to be back in the green and gold.
"It's bittersweet," Suzuki said about the trade. "I wouldn't say glad for a change of scenery. I enjoyed my time there. Send to me to a place with a chance to win, and I'm all in."
Oakland manager Bob Melvin said Suzuki was a welcome addition to the clubhouse, especially with the loss of catchers John Jaso -- who could miss the rest of the season with a concussion -- and Derek Norris -- who was officially placed on the 15-day disabled list Friday, retroactive to Aug. 21, with a fractured left big toe.
Stephen Vogt was the only healthy catcher on the A's 40-man roster.
"He's terrific," Melvin said about Suzuki. "The tough part about replacing a catcher, as far along in the season as we are, is the transition period with the pitchers. So, this one is an easy one. He's knows most of our guys -- a team leader, always has been. I don't know if the front office could get a better guy for us."