The Oakland Athletics have engaged in a three-team swap with the Mariners and Nationals that landed them catcher John Jaso from Seattle. As a part of the deal Oakland is sending right-handed pitchers A.J. Cole, Blake Treinen and a player to be named later to the Nationals. To make room on the roster they have designated catcher George Kottaras for assignment.

The move is a sign that Oakland is willing to do whatever they can to defend their division crown in 2013.

"There's no sense straddling the fence, the club was good enough to win the A.L. West last year," A's general manager Billy Beane said by phone Wednesday night. "I think we should do everything we can to give them every advantage we can."

Jaso, 29, is a left-handed hitting catcher, and looks like a platoon option for the A's. Last season he hit .302 with 10 homers, 47 RBI, and had a .419 on-base percentage, and .508 slugging percentage against right-handed pitching. Against southpaws, however, he only hit .119 with a .250 OBP, and had just three RBI.

"This guy really came into his own last year as a hitter and we think he is really a good fit in the lineup, particularly if you combine his patience, the developing power, and the contact rate is pretty unique," Beane said.