The Oakland Athletics needed cheap pitching. Brian Cashman needed file folders.
Three months after southpaw Pedro Feliciano’s left rotator cuff surgery, you wouldn’t expect there to be a market for his services. But then, you’d be underestimating the resourcefulness of Billy Beane.
Beane, the Athletics’ savvy GM portrayed by Brad Pitt on the big screen in “Moneyball,” called Cashman on a whim to gauge the availability of several young players on the New York roster. When Cashman jokingly brought up Feliciano, Beane leapt at the opportunity.
“What are you asking in return?”
Cashman admits to being taken “completely by surprise” by the overture, but he quickly regrouped when he realized Beane was serious. After Googling the A’s active roster and farm system only to find no players of value, he settled for filling a more immediate need.
“The file folders buckle under the weight of these blockbuster contracts. Billy mentioned these titanium-reinforced ones he had. They sounded ridiculously expensive but, in retrospect, so was Pedro. It seemed like a fair trade.”
Beane was ecstatic about the swap.
“Even if Pedro never throws a pitch in an A’s uniform, he takes up far less space than those file folders. I was up all night gluing those titanium strips to them, but it was worth it.”