Jun 25, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers right fielder Alex Rios (51) catches a fly ball in the second inning against the Detroit Tigers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
2. Why would the Mariners want to trade for Rios?
.309/.342/.446 … 16 doubles, 8 triples, 3 home runs, 34 RBI, 13 stolen bases, 34 runs scored.
His runs scored would be second on the team (behind Robinson Cano). His stolen bases would be second on the team (behind James Jones), his 16 doubles would be third on the team (behind Kyle Seager and Cano), his triples would would more than double Jones’ team lead (at 3), his RBI total would be third on the team. His batting average would be second on the team.
Starting to see the picture I am painting?
Yes, I understand Rios has played half of his games in a hitter-friendly ballpark in Arlington. However, his home/road splits are nearly identical, with a higher batting average on the road.
Plugging him into right field and into the 4th spot in the lineup sandwiched between Cano and Seager, the Mariners offense would take another step towards formidable.
3. What would it take to make Rios a Mariner?
I always struggle with determining a fair deal in trades. It’s hard for me to objectively value players.
But to acquire Rios the Mariners would need to give up a Major League ready outfielder, an infield prospect at either 2nd or 1st, and more than likely a future starting pitcher.
For a Major League ready outfielder I would think maybe a Xavier Avery or Jabari Blash from Triple-A Tacoma could do the trick. Or if someone more proven were desired, Cole Gillespie or Michael Saunders could be in that deal too– though I think Saunders has flashed too much potential (despite his injury-prone style) for the Mariners to trade him.
For the infield prospect I wouldn’t go much further than Nick Franklin. I understand the Rangers have Jurickson Profar, but Franklin would provide depth in the system with legitimate Major League potential. Moreover, the Mariners can send Justin Smoak back to Texas just for the fun of it too.
When it comes to a starting pitcher, I don’t think the Mariners will or should part ways with either Taijuan Walker or James Paxton. But lefty Anthony Fernandez or righty Andrew Carraway may just do the trick.
If the Mariners could get their hands on Alex Rios, it would change the complexion of this team for the better. But the question remains: would it cost to much too much to put him in a Mariners uniform?