A’s deal Ben Zobrist to Royals


Oakland’s hold on baseball’s best utility player lasted only four months.

The A’s traded Ben Zobrist Kansas City for two pitchers, Sean Manaea and Aaron Brooks. An undisclosed amount of cash was also sent to the Royals in the deal.

Both arrivals are prospects, though Brooks has some major league experience. Brooks, 25, will go to Triple-A Nashville.

Manaea, 23, recently earned a promotion to Double-A and started the season as the Royals third best prospect according to Baseball America.

Zobrist had come to Oakland in the offseason by way of a trade. A’s top outfield prospect Boog Powell, catcher John Jaso and minor league shortstop Daniel Robertson were sent to Tampa Bay to retain Zobrist’s services.

In four months with the A’s, Zobrist posted an .801 OPS, .268 batting average with 39 runs and 33 RBI, which is one of the better first half performances of his career.

Because of his super-utility abilities and his excellent career numbers, there was no shortage of suitors for Zobrist. And the A’s got a haul for him, though time will tell whether they got more than the initial offering.

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