So, it’s 2 o’clock in the afternoon here in the greatest of great African cities, Djibouti, Djibouti. Yes, I got that right the capital city in the country of Djibouti is Djibouti. Just like New York, New York. I’m suppose to be asleep at this time being that I’m trying to make the switch from day shift (8am – 8pm) to night shift (obviously the opposite of the last schedule) but as usual when making such a move I’m having a heard time falling asleep.
I started digging around the internet and reading whats out there on the Albert Pujols and CJ Wilson moves and I’m really surprised at how much negativity there is towards the Mariners at this point. It’s as if everyone had a birthday picnic planned but it rained outside and now it’s their parents fault. So here is a little rant on how the sky isn’t really falling for the Mariners and how the front office would just be wise to stick with their plan.
No one (I don’t think anyways) is wrongly blaming Jack Zduriencik for what happened with Pujols. I think it’s pretty obvious that there isn’t anything that the Mariners could have done to stop it but now everyone is talking about how the team now needs to do something fast in an effort to “retaliate” or give us a better shot at winning now that it’s “hopelessly out of grasps”". Of course that means Prince Fielder in many peoples minds.
The problem is that what the Angels do shouldn’t change how the Mariners build their roster at this point. That’s pure stupidity. You know who knee jerks to rival division signings? Bad teams.
The Angels sure had holes in their line-up last year, it was one of the reasons why I arrogantly predicted they would finish last in the AL-West, the problem is that despite those holes they have above average players that make up for those issues. Now they are poised to take their AL West thrown back from the Rangers.
The Mariners have all the same holes (and then some) but hardly share the same luxury of having 3-4 guys pick up the offensive load while guys aren’t on their games. There is a plan in place by this front office which we’ve grown to be impressed with and have had our hope mildly restored. The Angels getting Pujols doesn’t speed up any plan they are working on nor slow it down.
Obviously the Mariners are interested in Prince Fielder, he’s an elite bat and one that makes a lot of sense for this team (under the right financial context), but this doesn’t mean the Mariners need to lose their head at this time and attempt to catch a team that currently has a better foundation in place to make such a run.
Prince Fielder doesn’t in my mind make this organization a .500 team at this time. He certainly helps but there are just too many unanswered questions and this coming year will go a long ways towards helping solve those answers. But we aren’t likely to take a shot at the AL West division next year and certainly not without positive steps by Justin Smoak, Franklin Gutierrez and Casper Wells.
If your the Red Sox sure you certainly have one eye on the Yankees and how your roster matches up against theirs. Those team constantly battle for division titles. But what was their retaliation once the Yankees scored Mark Texieira and CC Sabathia? Nothing.
The Red Sox signed Brad Penney and John Smoltz that off-season to help solidify their rotation and that was it. There wasn’t some desperate move because they didn’t feel they had to force anything. Sure they went to the mattresses and tried to acquire Felix and Adrian Gonzalez. But they weren’t going to cripple themselves or deviate from the plan because Theo Epstein is a smart guy. They took a step back, looked at the big picture and stayed with the played they had. Sure, they finished behind the Yankees but they still won 95 games and a wild card birth.
The results aren’t even the point. Smart teams don’t retaliate in moves. Teams that can absorb stupid do those sorts of moves. People can talk about the situation with the Mariners finances all they want but I can’t believe they can afford to mess up a 25+ million dollar deal because someone else got better.
They aren’t going to purge the farm system and trade some young guys that they really believe in to get some short sighted vet that is going to improve this team for a limited term. If they did that it would be the wrong move.
The Angels made two amazing moves today that left me speechless. Props to them it’s uncanny that they pulled both those guys down. But don’t buy into the idea that this is the end of whatever plan was in place, that for some reason we have suddenly arrived at a crossroads where we need to decide to either just go all in or blow it up.
Poorly run teams do that and it ruins them long term. We want long term success and I’m alright if that means that the Mariners felt that they didn’t want to be the ones to overpay for Prince Fielder. Overpaying talent is a dangerous game and it’s not like that one gamble could pay such mass dividens that you blindly ignore the chips you already have accrued over the last three years that cash it all in.