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A's acquire INF Lowrie from Astros

(AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith, File)

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Infielder Jed Lowrie is returning to Oakland after a one-year stay in Houston.

The Athletics acquired Lowrie from the Astros on Wednesday for minor league right-hander Brendan McCurry less than a year after Lowrie left Oakland to sign a three-year deal with Houston.

"Jed is a very good player," A's general manager David Forst said. "He was very good here, he had a good year in Houston. It was a good opportunity for us."


Braun optimistic following back surgery

MILWAUKEE (AP) Nearly two months after back surgery, Milwaukee Brewers right fielder Ryan Braun said he is feeling well and is optimistic that he will be back to 100 percent for spring training.

"The only surprise is the rehab is a little bit longer than I was anticipating," Braun said Wednesday at the team's annual holiday food drive at Miller Park. "Other than that, everything went as planned and as expected."


Former OF Otis Nixon arrested again

ATLANTA (AP) Jail records show that former Major League Baseball outfielder Otis Nixon was arrested on charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor and permitting an unlicensed person to drive.

Atlanta police spokesman Officer Kim Jones says 56-year-old Nixon was arrested Tuesday night. Jones did not provide any further details.


Diamondbacks name Magadan hitting coach

PHOENIX (AP) The Arizona Diamondbacks have hired Dave Magadan as their hitting coach.

The 53-year-old Magadan spent the last three seasons as hitting coach of the Texas Rangers. Before that, he was hitting coach for the San Diego Padres and Boston Red Sox.


Pirates get RHP Webster from Arizona

PHOENIX (AP) The Arizona Diamondbacks have traded right-hander Allen Webster to the Pittsburgh Pirates for cash considerations.

Webster was traded to the Diamondbacks from Boston last offseason in a deal that sent left-hander Wade Miley to the Red Sox and right-hander Rubby De La Rosa to the desert.


ChiSox, C Avila agree to 1 year, $2.5M

CHICAGO (AP) Free agent catcher Alex Avila and the Chicago White Sox have agreed to a $2.5 million, one-year contract.

Avila is a .242 hitter with 66 homers and 282 RBIs during seven big league seasons, all with the Detroit Tigers, and has thrown out 24.5 percent of attempted base stealers. The 29-year-old was limited to 67 games with Detroit last season because of injuries, including a left knee bone bruise.


Cubs acquire LHP Brothers from Rockies

DENVER (AP) The Colorado Rockies traded left-handed reliever Rex Brothers to the Chicago Cubs for 18-year-old lefty Wander Cabrera.

Brothers had been designated for assignment by Colorado on Nov. 20.


Braves add veteran RHP Norris

ATLANTA (AP) The Braves have added a veteran pitcher to their young rotation, agreeing to a one-year contract with right-hander Bud Norris.

The 30-year-old split last season between Baltimore and San Diego, going 3-11 with a 6.72 ERA over 38 games, including 11 starts.


Angels complete staff with Radinsky

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Scott Radinsky has been named the Los Angeles Angels' new bullpen coach.

The Angels rounded out manager Mike Scioscia's major league coaching staff on Wednesday.


Angels, C Soto agree to 1 year, $2.8M

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Free-agent catcher Geovany Soto and the Los Angeles Angels have agreed to a $2.8 million, one-year contract.

The team announced the move Tuesday night, one day after losing catcher Chris Iannetta to the Seattle Mariners in free agency.

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