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A's sign Akinori Iwamura, put in Monday's lineup

Not even a week after the Pirates released infielder Akinori Iwamura, the Athletics have signed him and added him to the expanded roster for the remainder of the season. Iwamura, a career .270 hitter, had an atrocious year with the Pirates, spending most of the season with the Triple-A squad. However, his versatility and veteran know-how cannot go unnoticed on a team that expects to contend for the playoffs in 2011. 

Iwamura will be 32 at the start of the 2011 season, but he gives the A's options around the infield at positions that are up in the air after this season. Sources expect the A's to decline Mark Ellis' option for the '11 season, but it is possible they will re-sign at a cheaper rate and platoon him. The A's will also certainly decline Eric Chavez's option, meaning Iwamura could be an option to platoon at third as well.

These final three weeks will be a big test for Iwamura in landing a job next season.