ST. PETERSBURG -- The A's have gone without a left-hander in the bullpen at times this season, and at times they've carried lefties in whom they seemed to have little confidence.
Their search for a successful southpaw might have come to an inexpensive end Wednesday, when they claimed Craig Breslow off waivers from the Twins.
Breslow, 28, was 1-2 with a 6.28 ERA in 17 games with the Twins this season, but in 2008, he was one of the most underrated lefty relievers in the game.
While splitting the season between Cleveland and Minnesota, he posted a 1.91 ERA in 49 games and 47 innings. His ERA was the second-best among American League lefty relievers who worked at least 35 innings, and it was the ninth-best among all AL pitchers who worked at least 40 frames.
A 2002 Yale graduate with a degree in molecular biophysics and biochemistry, Breslow has a career 2.91 ERA with 76 strikeouts in 89 2/3 innings.
"I'm excited about having a left-handed guy who's experienced and has had some success at this level," A's manager Bob Geren said, who noted that left-handed hitters batted .183 against Breslow last season. "He could be a nice weapon to have."
Breslow, whose one-year contract pays him $422,000, is expected to join the team on Thursday in time to be available in the finale of a four-game series against the host Rays at Tropicana Field.
At that time, the A's will have to make a 25-man roster move; they created room on the 40-man roster Wednesday by transferring second baseman Mark Ellis (strained left calf) to the 60-day disabled list.
Mychael Urban is a national writer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.