The A's officially announced their signings of free agent relievers Ryan Madson and John Axford on Friday.
Both veterans are key pieces in Oakland's effort to bolster the team's most glaring weakness last season, a bullpen that coughed up lead after lead in the late innings. The contracts given to each reflect that importance.
Madson, 35, was given a three-year $22 million deal after an excellent comeback 2015 season with the Royals. The right-hander had announced his retirement in 2014 after difficulties coming back from Tommy John surgery, but returned to post a 2.13 ERA in 68 games with Kansas City last season.
The A's gave Axford, 32, a two-year $10 million deal with a possible $4 million in incentives for games finished tied to it. The right-hander had 25 saves for Colorado last season but posted a 4.20 ERA and was designated for assignment in November and became a free agent.