Relief pitcher Ryan Madson revived his career last year with the Royals and now he is taking his career to Oakland as the Athletics signed him to a 3-year/$22 million contract. The Athletics find a way to surprise us with an offseason move pretty much every year and this certainly is a signing that I didn’t see coming. Madson was a key part of the Royals bullpen last season as he had a 2.13 ERA for them last season. Oakland’s bullpen struggled especially in late-innings. However, Madson will likely be the 8th inning guy for the Athletics in 2016 and he could even compete for the closer’s role with Sean Doolittle. Madson is 35-years old and he wasn’t going to get a long-term deal this offseason, but this is a really good signing for Oakland. Madson provides some stability to an Oakland bullpen that wasn’t very good in this season, although many people didn’t even have the Athletics as a contender to sign Madson.
Grade: B+ – The Athletics bullpen was basically a disaster last season, so adding a consistent veteran relief pitcher like Ryan Madson will really help. Madson has experience as a closer and don’t be surprised if he even ends up winning that role in 2016.