The Oakland Athletics had to be holding their breath with every Scott Kazmir start this season, knowing his shoulder could go at any time and potentially cost them a shot at a return, well, like the one they got in this deal with the Houston Astros. The Astros paid dearly for two months -- maybe a dozen starts in the remainder of the regular season -- of Kazmir. They gave up a top young catching prospect and a quality right-handed starter prospect who was buried in the team's surfeit of right-handed arms.
Kazmir is an impending free agent and probably not someone to whom the A's would have made a qualifying offer. He also has had multiple scares this year regarding the health of his arm and ultimately missed just two starts.