Fri, Feb 12, 2021 at 12:05pm


The Oakland Athletics acquired pitcher Adam Kolarek and outfielder Cody Thomas from the Los Angeles Dodgers for infielder Sheldon Neuse and pitcher Gus Varland.

What does it give the Oakland Athletics
In Kolarek, the Athletics add another quality left-hander for their bullpen (joining Jake Diekman). He was great for the Dodgers in 2020, so the hope here is that he can continue to perform at a high level in pressure situations. Thomas has never played above Double-A ball and is already 26 years of age, so he needs to start making some noise. Perhaps a switch to the Oakland organization will help him.

What does it give the Los Angeles Dodgers
For the Dodgers, this deal gives them more options on the field with the addition of Neuse, who can play several positions defensively. He might be an option at the hot corner specifically, if veteran Justin Turner is not re-signed. Varland is a long shot as a 24-year-old right-hander who has yet to pitch above Single-A ball. In the end, this deal will probably come down to Kolarek versus Neuse.

Fantasy impact
Kolarek might be able to get a few more save opportunities in Oakland, while his potential for holds remains high. Therefore, his fantasy stock remains solid. Neuse's value is dependent upon Turner. If the veteran third baseman returns to LA, Neuse will see much of his fantasy value disappear. However, Neuse becomes a decent sleeper if he will get an opportunity to start at the hot corner this season. Thomas and Varland were basically throw-ins here, so there is no need to have either player on the fantasy radar.

Player focus