Athletics acquire Dominguez from Texas in 3-team deal

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – The Oakland Athletics acquired right-hander Juan Dominguez from the Texas Rangers on Friday in a three-way trade that also sent utility player Freddie Bynum to the Chicago Cubs.

The A’s sent Bynum and left-hander John Rheinecker to Texas for Dominguez. The Rangers then dealt Bynum to the Cubs for lefty John Koronka.

Dominguez caught the A’s attention last September when he allowed two runs and eight hits in 7 1-3 innings of a 6-2 victory.

“He pitched a game in September against us last year and was pretty much lights out,” Oakland manager Ken Macha said. “He has a power arm, a plus fastball and a plus changeup.”

The 25-year-old Dominguez is 5-10 with a 4.60 ERA in 32 career appearances in the majors. He went into camp competing for Texas’ fifth starter job but struggled and R.A. Dickey earned the spot.

Dominguez is expected to start the season at Triple-A Sacramento.

“He’s young, he had a good arm, he’s 93, 94 (mph) on the fastball and has an outstanding changeup,” assistant general manager David Forst said.

“For the most part, he’s around the strike zone and the changeup is his swing and miss pitch.”

Bynum batted .278 with 23 stolen bases last season at Triple-A Sacramento and went 2-for-7 in a brief stint at the end of the season with the A’s. He then batted .373 with six steals this spring, but was out of options and wasn’t going to make Oakland’s roster.

The A’s are waiting to finalize their roster until they have a better idea about the weather forecast for the opening week. With a chance of rain early next week, the A’s might be forced to play a day-night doubleheader against the New York Yankees next Tuesday or Wednesday.

The A’s season opener is scheduled for Monday against the Yankees, who make only one trip to Oakland all season.

“If we have a doubleheader one of the first two days we may need a 12th pitcher,” Forst said.

Koronka was 1-2 with a 7.47 ERA in four games (three starts) for the Cubs last year, his only season in the big leagues.

Rheinecker was 4-0 with a 1.77 ERA in Triple-A last year. A torn tendon in his left middle finger ended his season May 13. He has never pitched in the majors.

AP-ES-03-31-06 2242EST

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