A's fan favorite Nick Swisher has been traded to the White Sox for three minor leaguers. He signed a contract ($26.75m for 5 years) in May 2007 which at the time appeared to be reasonable enough such that the A's could have kept him (at least from a financial perspective).
Here are some highlights from an AP story dated May 11, 2007 at the time of the deal: Nick Swisher and the Oakland Athletics agreed Friday on a $26.75 million, five-year contract that also includes a one-year club option for 2012. "This lends us some stability with the club as we move forward into the new stadium," A's GM Billy Beane said. "He does things offensively we'd like everybody to do. He takes a lot of walks and hits a lot of home runs." Swisher will earn $700,000 this year, $3.5 million in 2008, $5.3 million in 2009, $6.75 million in 2010 and $9 million in 2011. The club option is worth $10.25 million, with a $1 million buyout.
The trade link: http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3179423