Heard the Headley/A's rumours, though Panda's contract drives up his price a bit. Considering they are weak at 2B, it wouldn't be a bad deal. Would also work to shut down the thoughts that the A's are in rebuilding mode after trading Donaldson. As for Panda, you can dreamcast his numbers playing in Fenway but then the fact that he's had a bunch of somewhat concerning injuries since 2008 (Surgery on both wrists, left foot problem, left thigh strain) pop up. Also, his offensive numbers, notably BABIP and wRC+, have dropped every year since coming to the league in 2008. His BABIP from 2008-11 (1,869 plate appearances) was .323, and dropped to .301 (1,664 PA) from 2011-14. As for wRC+, these are his numbers since his first full season in 2009: 146, 96, 149, 118, 116, 111. The fact that it's been dropping in every season since 2011 is worrying, but more worrying is his split vs. LHP: .199/.244/.319, 59 wRC+. I'd heard that the Red Sox had soured on Middlebrooks, but signing Panda when you have a plethora of trade options seems unnecessary, as does Hanley's (but Hanley in a hitter's park mmmmmm).The problem is panda is just... not a very good player... over the last three years fangraphs has him 17th in the majors among third basemen in war, and most of the players behind him have been unable to hold down a starting job for that entire period. Headley is a much better player who i doubt will be signed for any more than they got panda for. Although I do have some doubts about the wisdom of signing hanley and a 3b (because im dubious about hanley's defense at short going forward if trading bogaerts), that's not the biggest problem, the biggest problem is panda being ridiculously overpaid.
Also in terms of filling donaldson's spot I've seen some suggestions the a's have been trying to sign headley and use lawrie to patch their gaping hole at second base, although who knows how much these rumors stem from "it makes sense" versus actually coming from anything real.
As for the Cruz signing, it fills Seattle's needs but doesn't necessarily look good. HR hitter in a spacious park like Safeco? No thanks.