The Seattle Mariners had a fairly successful trade deadline according to many. The acquired two right-handed bats, including a proven centerfielder/leadoff man and only gave up two minor leaguers and Nick Franklin to acquire them.
But a name that popped up time and time again in rumors was that of Dustin Ackley. Prior to his recent surge, Ackley had been written off by many Mariners fans. It was thought, but never confirmed that several teams would be interested in the former first-round pick.
According to King, the discussions ended when Seattle made it known that they wanted RHP Bryan Mitchell in exchange for Ackley.
“Nevertheless, when Seattle asked for minor league right-hander Bryan Mitchell, the discussions essentially ended because the Yankees view the 23-year-old right-hander as a rotation candidate either this year or next. – George A. King III
Mitchell has split the season between Double-A Trenton and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre posting a 4-6 record in 18 games with a 4.32 ERA and 75 strikeouts in 81.1 IP. He was a 16th round pick out of a North Carolina High School.
Perhaps Jack Zduriencik’s scouts see something in Mitchell you can’t see by the numbers. Perhaps he just didn’t want to give up Ackley and knew how highly the Yankees valued Mitchell so they asked for him to squash their interest in Ackley.
No one knows. But it’s interesting that the Yankees then went and obtained Prado, who for all intents and purposes is a better hitter than Ackley. He has a career slash line of .290/.340/.424 and was batting .270 this season for the D-Backs with five homers and 42 RBI.
Prado was the main piece in the trade that the Atlanta Braves made with Arizona to acquire Justin Upton prior to the 2013 season. He hasn’t been spectacular this season, but serviceable is fair. Ackley has a 1.6 oWAR this season compared to a 1.3 for Prado. And considering that Prado is making nine times what Ackley is making this year, I’d say the Yankees really were “settling” by getting Prado.
The D-Backs received catching prospect Peter O’Brien and a player to be named or cash considerations for Prado. O’Brien, 24, is hitting .267/.312/.593 with 33 home runs between High-A and Double-A in 413 plate appearances.
That seems like a pretty good get. Fans can only hope that Jack did the right thing in hanging on to Ackley. If he keeps hitting the way he has been lately, it looks like a good non-move.