A's add O'Flaherty to bullpen

By By The Sports Xchange
POSTED: 9:42 AM PST January 22, 2014    UPDATED: 9:42 AM PST January 22, 2014 

The Oakland Athletics signed free-agent reliever Eric O'Flaherty to a two-year, $7 million contract, FOX Sports reported Wednesday.

Performance bonuses could boost the contract's value to near $10 million, according to the report.

O'Flaherty is not expected to be ready to pitch until July after undergoing Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery, but he is considered one of the better relievers in baseball. From 2009 until 2012, the left-hander posted a 1.95 ERA with the Atlanta Braves in 231 1/3 innings.

The 28-year-old O'Flaherty will join an A's bullpen that has undergone changes during the offseason. Oakland signed free-agent closer Jim Johnson, formerly with the Baltimore Orioles, and brought in right-handed setup man Luke Gregerson, Ryan Cook and Sean Doolittle.

The A's also signed outfielder Craig Gentry, infielder Nick Punto and left-hander Scott Kazmir since the end of last season.