MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers traded Triple-A left-hander Brad Mills to Oakland on Tuesday for cash considerations, payable in one stack of pennies.
The $1 fee, reported by Ken Rosenthal of MLB Network and Fox Sports, was a technicality of a clause in Mills' Minor League contract with the Brewers, which included an "out" if he was not in the Majors by June 15. The Brewers were required to advertise Mills' availability to the other 29 teams, and if one was interested, Milwaukee had to let him go.
The A's were interested, and plan to add Mills to their rotation as soon as Saturday. The 29-year-old soft-tosser went 4-2 with a 1.56 ERA in 14 appearances, 12 starts, at Triple-A Nashville, including one stretch of 18 1/3 scoreless innings.
"I feel good about a guy getting an opportunity," manager Ron Roenicke said. "If we've got a couple [other] guys that we have in mind to be starters for us, which I think we do, I think any time one of those guys at Triple-A can go to the big leagues is great.
"It's great for us to be able to have this guy as insurance for us, but it's not fair to the player. I mean, I would feel bad if we kept him because we like him and all of a sudden, everybody stayed healthy and we never brought him up and he misses an opportunity for half a year in the big leagues."
Top prospect Jimmy Nelson and fellow right-hander Mike Fiers were both ahead of Mills on Milwaukee's organizational depth chart, and just as important, were already on the 40-man roster. That's why Fiers was promoted to fill a spot in the bullpen last week.
Fiers planned to send Mills a congratulatory text on Tuesday.
"He was pitching. That's the kind of guy he is," Fiers said. "Not a big velocity guy. Similar to me, you've got to pitch. He mixes his pitches well, keeps hitters off balance and throws strikes. He's a pitcher, man."
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.