Seattle Mariners: Hot Stove is Cooling

jonnyo88
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As we enter day three of the winter meetings, the Mariners have stood pat in terms of making moves..so far.

I’m sure there have been many discussions between Jack Z and other GM’s, as per Jack’s way. We have all heard “Z” say that he’d be foolish not to at least listen to any conversation.

In many of my previous articles I’ve mentioned the fact that if the Mariner’s do not go after a deal prior to the winter meetings then the deal would not get done at all.

I said that about the Justin Upton rumors as well as the Matt Kemp rumors.

In terms of Upton, I just don’t feel like the Mariners were getting enough in return to give up Walker. Too much risk in the end.

Speaking of Matt Kemp, I think the Dodgers were unwilling to dish out $50MM plus in addition to Kemp to offset his salary. I still think the deal would have be good for the Mariners if LA was willing the pay a large chunk of Kemp’s contract.

So looking beyond those two big name trades, what may happen?

Trade

A smaller scale trade is always a possibility. I think the Mariner’s are in the process of making a decision between short stops Chris Taylor and Brad Miller. I do not believe the M’s will platoon at short stop again in 2015.

So if they make a decision here, I think that one of these guys may go in a trade somewhere.

The Mariners could use a veteran in the back end of the starting pitching rotation. Brad Miller could be the odd-man-out at short stop for M’s.

I’m still scratching my head at the J.A Haap situation. Yes I know Saunders moving was to open up for a guy they are looking to add in the outfield…but J.A Haap?? The Blue Jays clearly won that transaction.

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I would be shocked to see Haap in the starting rotation on opening day. I think Haap is a piece to be moved as well in a package deal down the road prior to opening day.

Mariner fans, breathe a sigh of relief. I do not think the Mariners are  going to trade away Taijuan Walker..yet.

The vision is clear. If Walker is going in a trade, the Mariners want the world in return. Although Walker is still a prospect his upside is just too great for Jack Z to let go for a return that is less than adequate.

At this point Walker for Troy Tulowitzki is just about the only trade I could see the Mariners allowing. I don’t see that happening, by the way.

Free Agents

I still think the Mariners will be active in free agency this winter.

Mariner fans may be a little upset that they don’t make another big splash but instead go a little cheaper and lower profile in free agency.

I mentioned in a previous piece that the Mariners were interested in Alex Rios, still a possibility.

Other names have been mentioned here at SodoMojo as well, Jonny Gomes being one as well as Melky Cabrera.

Rios comes in last in my opinion. But I wouldn’t be surprised for the M’s the give him a chance as he would likely be the cheapest of the three.

Of the three players mentioned, Jonny Gomes is my favorite guy. Gomes has a history for having a flare for the dramatics with  clutch hits in pressure situations. He is certainly a spark plug and a rally-around type of guy.

However, being an everyday outfielder may not be in the cards Jonny. He would be a nice beard addition to the roster though.

Melky Cabrera is the best option of these three players.

Being a switch hitter is huge and will keep the balance in the line-up. Melky will be a relatively cheap addition in comparison to what the Mariners would have given up as well as paid for a guy like Matt Kemp.

I think the Mariners will land on one of these three players at some point this week.

The Mariners believe they are a potential playoff team right now but they know they need to add another piece to complete the outfield.

That being said, after they add an outfield piece in the off-season they will see how the first half plays out.

Best case scenario for the Mariners: get to the trade deadline and be in playoff position, then a move can be made to add whatever the missing piece may be.

For now we can all breathe easy, I think we will see Taijuan Walker get his chance in 2015.

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