Blue Jays acquire Josh Donaldson in a trade with the Athletics

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Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Athletics have traded third baseman Josh Donaldson to the Blue Jays. The deal has been confirmed by MLB.com’s Jane Lee.

The Athletics will receive infielder Brett Lawrie along with minor league pitchers Kendall Graveman and Sean Nolin, and shortstop Franklin Barreto.

Donaldson, 28, had another productive season for the A’s, batting .255/.342/.456 with 29 home runs and 98 RBI in 695 plate appearances. One has to wonder how he’ll be affected by the turf at the Rogers Centre, however. Donaldson is a Super Two, which means he’ll be arbitration-eligible for four years rather than three, between 2015-18.

Lawrie, 24, missed 84 games in 2014 due to a fractured index finger when he was hit by a pitch, and a strained left oblique. When he was in the lineup, he hit .247/.301/.421 with 12 home runs and 38 RBI in 282 plate appearances. Lawrie is entering arbitration eligibility for the first time in his career and can become a free agent after the 2017 season.

Some info on the minor leaguers, via Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star:

Giants hire Gabe Kapler as new manager

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The Giants announced on Tuesday the hiring of Gabe Kapler as manager. Kapler, filling the extremely large shoes of future Hall of Famer Bruce Bochy, inked a three-year deal, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. Kapler was one of three finalists for the job, beating out Astros bench coach Joe Espada and Rays bench coach Matt Quataro.

Following his 12-year playing career, Kapler was a coach for Israel’s team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic qualifier. He then became an analyst for FS1 before joining the Dodgers’ front office as the director of player development in November 2014. He was involved in three scandals there: one in which he tried to handle a sexual assault incident involving two Dodgers minor league players without telling police, one in which he allegedly discriminated against Nick Francona, a veteran and former baseball operations employee, and an incident that implicated most of the Dodgers’ front office concerning the recruiting of international free agents. The Dodgers reportedly kept a spreadsheet of employees and their level of criminality.

Despite Kapler’s background, the Phillies hired him as their manager ahead of the 2018 season. He would lead the Phillies to an 80-82 record that year and then helped them improve by one game in 2019, finishing at exactly .500 before being fired. Kapler’s tenure in Philly was tumultuous, often drawing ire from the local media and subsequently the fan base for not being tough enough on his players. The Phillies also reportedly had a clubhouse issue in 2018 in which players were playing video games in the clubhouse during games, prompting Carlos Santana to smash a TV with a bat.

Kapler has a history with Farhan Zaidi, the Giants’ president of baseball operations. They worked together in the Dodgers’ front office as Zaidi served as GM from November 2014-18.