As the GM Meetings roll into day 2 it’s clear that teams are talking and making known what they want and what they’re willing to give up.
The Atlanta Braves are such a team, interested in shopping some of their depth in hopes of getting both younger and cheaper. This from Ken Rosenthal:
Evan Gattis, a career .253/.304/.487 hitter and is capable of playing catcher, a corner outfield spot, and first base. He isn’t arbitration eligible until 2016, and won’t be a free agent until 2019.
Gattis could be everything the Mariners wanted and more. He is a 20+ home runs per year type player who is defensively versatile. If the Mariners traded for the righty, he could spell Mike Zunino behind the plate, play first base and DH, and get time in the outfield as well. He could become a middle-of-the-order right-handed bat to sandwich between Robinson Cano and Kyle Seager.
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But, as Rosenthal notes, the Braves are looking to package Gattis with another player in trade, preferrably B.J. Upton. The Mariners, though, would likely be more interested in his brother, Justin Upton. Both could be fits in the Mariners outfield, though B.J.’s offense in recent seasons has been atrocious.
If the Mariners are seriously interested in finding right-handed power for the corner outfield spots and first base, the Braves may be their perfect trade candidate. However, the Mariners are expected to look hard at free agency before trading away prospects and future stars for a year or two of somebody else’s contract.
Victor Martinez, Hanley Ramirez, and others remain very real possibilities for the Mariners. But if the offseason doesn’t go as planned and the M’s can’t get a free agent to bite, the M’s have a potential trade partner in Atlanta whose got right-handed power it’s willing to trade.
As it’s only day two of the GM meetings and the offseason is just beginning, things will become clearer and trades will become greater possibilities as the offseason progresses.