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Reclamation Projects Continue

The A's are looking for Marco Scutaro, bullpen edition.

At least that's what I believe they were looking for when they picked up righty reliever Tim Harikkala from the Colorado Rockies off of waivers today.

Harikkala is an older pitcher, 33, and he got a shot in the bigs this year and didn't disappoint. Initially.

But the wheels came off the Harikkala express late in the season.

The most important reason why Billy Beane would take a chance on someone like Harikkala is this:

He (Harikkala) did not allow a hit or a run in his first 11.0 innings (36 batters) and retired his first 22 batters faced before walking Atlanta's JD Drew on May 1, setting a new club record. Harikkala went 1-4 with five blown saves over his last 12 outings (10.1ip), which raised his ERA from 2.75 to 4.74.

This is the first of many changes coming to the A's pen. It will be the number one priority this offseason for Billy and company.

Saarloos filled in admirably when needed this year and he got a couple of crucial wins for the A's, but it was reported that he may need Tommy John surgery and the A's can't afford to have someone on the payroll while they recover, a la Jon Lieber and the Yankees.

Whether Harikkala winds up in the A's pen or filling a Sacramento roster spot for the departed Garcia, Street or Mabeus remains to be seen.

But for those of you that expect the A's to get someone like Mariano Rivera or Eric Gagne or John Smoltz (which I would be in complete favor of, mind you), don't hold your breath. Reclamation projects will continue to be the norm.

Marco worked out nicely, didn't he?