The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired IF Sheldon Neuse and minor league pitcher Gus Varland from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for LHP Adam Kolarek and minor league OF Cody Thomas.
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) February 12, 2021
Kolarek is fresh off of a 2020 season that saw him post a 3-0 record with a 0.95 ERA and 13 strikeouts in 20 appearances out of the pen, though his postseason performance wasn’t as strong. After being acquired from Tampa Bay in 2019, Kolarek was primarily used as a lefty specialist, and was a pretty good one. Fans can remember back to the 2019 NLDS where he owned Juan Soto throughout the series. With the implementation of the three batter minimum rule, it was thought that Kolarek would struggle, but he instead was able to hold his own despite allowing a.286 batting average to right handers. The Dodgers have stocked up arms for the bullpen for the upcoming season which may have made Kolarek expendable even, especially with the emergence of Victor Gonzalez. OF Cody Thomas has yet to break through into the Major League, yet in Spring Training 1.o last year, the 26-year old was making his case for it to be his year before the pandemic struck.
Adam Kolarek vs. Juan Soto part 3. pic.twitter.com/VtqWBtGwCz
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) October 7, 2019
As for the return, the Dodgers will be getting back Nuese who is the A’s No. 5 prospect who has some limited big league experience. In 56 at bats during the 2019 season, he batted .250 with 7 RBIs and only 4 walks to 19 strikeouts. However, the 26-year old has a track record of success in the minor leagues. Gus Varland is rated as the A’s No. 28 prospect but has yet to pitch above High-A.