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A's decline option on Stephen Drew, exercise option on Grant Balfour

The Oakland Athletics exercised their option on closer Grant Balfour while declining their option on shortstop Stephen Drew.

Leon Halip

The Oakland Athletics have decided to pick up the option on closer Grant Balfour while subsequently declining picking up the option for Stephen Drew. Balfour's option is worth $4.5 million. Balfour, who is 34 years old, posted a 2.53 ERA while saving 24 games.

Drew's option was worth $10 million and was mutual; reportedly both sides declined to pick it up, although only one side is needed to dissolve the option for next year. Drew gets a $1.35 million buyout for the service. A solid defender at shortstop, Drew managed to pound in five home runs and ding in 16 RBIs through 39 games after being traded to Oakland on August 20th.

It's looking like the A's are making Drew their top priority with regards to who they end up taking at shortstop. There are also questions as to whether they'll decided to bring back Jonny Gomes and Brandon McCarthy, both of whom are A's free agents.