Mariners Not Done Adding Pieces- We Hope
Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports
Finally, we have to look for a closer. As I mentioned earlier, Mariners pitchers blew 23 saves last year. Managment says the closer may have to come from in-house, given the market for closers available.
Let’s take a look at them.
Tom Wilhelmsen converted 24 of 29, Danny Farquhar converted 16 of 20, Charlie Furbush blew six saves in six tries (talent). Yoervis Medina blew three out of four save chances, Oliver Perez blew a save in three tries. Carter Capps blew the only two chances he got (Marlins problem now) while Stephen Pryor and Chance Ruffin each blew the only chance they had.
Why haven’t the Mariners re-signed Perez? If nothing else, he should be the lefty-specialist out of the pen. Best case? He could be the closer. I think Farquhar could develop into a good closer but the M’s can’t afford to blow that many saves again in 2014.
It’s not the end of the world though. The World Champion Red Sox blew 24 games this season. But they had the offense to win late games. The Mariners were 6-15 in extra inning games in 2013. The Sox were 10-6.
So if no in-house candidate emerges, who is left out there?
The Phillies have Jonathan Papelbon on the block. Perhaps a deal for Papelbon and Brown or Papelbon and Hamels is more likely. I doubt we could get all three.
Grant Balfour appears to be closing in on a deal with the Baltimore Orioles.
Fernando Rodney and Joaquin Benoit are still out there, but may be asking too high a price tag for Seattle’s liking (but $240M for a 2B isn’t?). Joel Hanrahan and Andrew Bailey are also out there, but questions lie with each.
I am still holding out hope for Rodney, reaching into his quiver and drawing back his bow to launch his imaginary arrow into the Seattle sky after a victory.
One can hope.