CLEVELAND (AP) — The AL East-leading Boston Red Sox boosted their outfield depth by acquiring speedy Rajai Davis from the Oakland Athletics for a minor league outfielder on Wednesday.
The Red Sox sent 18-year-old Rafael Rincones to the last-place A’s. Hours earlier, Boston put center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. on the 10-day disabled list because of a sprained left thumb.
Davis is expected to join the Red Sox in Cleveland on Thursday for a game between division leaders. He hit .233 with 26 stolen bases, five home runs and 18 RBIs in 100 games with Oakland this season.
Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said he began discussions with Oakland general manager Billy Beane last week about Davis.
The trade was finalized Wednesday morning, but the deal couldn’t be announced until the A’s finished their game in Baltimore. Davis didn’t play in Oakland’s 8-7 loss in 12 innings.
“We’re very happy to have Raj,” Dombrowski said. “He’s a guy we had talked about to add speed to our lineup in September. Raj is a tremendous individual. We think the world of him, everyone thinks the world of him.”
The 36-year-old Davis is in his 12th big league season. He led the American League with 43 steals last year for Cleveland, and also hit a big home run in Game 7 of the World Series off Cubs closer Aroldis Chapman.
Davis, who grew up in Connecticut, wants another shot at postseason play.
“The atmosphere is just totally different in the playoffs,” he said. “I think once you get a taste of a little bit of the playoffs, you want a little bit more. I’m just thankful this opportunity to come my way.”
Davis also has played for Pittsburgh, San Francisco, Toronto and Detroit.
“He’s hit well the second half of this year and he obviously hit well last year in the World Series,” Dombrowski said. “Regardless of the situation, I don’t think he’ll get rattled.”
Oakland manager Bob Melvin said Davis had a major impact on the Athletics’ clubhouse.
“He exceeded all that,” Melvin said. “He had to deal with some tough circumstance with us not playing every day after starting to play every day. He was very supportive of the younger players knowing the direction we were going. Bit of a mentor to all these guys.”
The Red Sox designated outfielder Steve Selsky for assignment. The 28-year-old went 1 for 9 in eight games for Boston this year.