Mariners Stay Put As The Rest Of League Upgrades
By Adam Levi
The Mariners and GM, Jerry Dipoto have sat backed and watched two teams (albiet in the national league) enhance their rosters over the last twenty-four hours by picking up big name players.
Over the course of just one day, the Mariners have seen the Philadelphia Phillies and the Atlanta Braves make noticable improvements to their rosters.
The Phillies have added Howie Kendrick, who was aquired in a traded with the Los Angeles Dodgers for two players. And, the Braves have bolstered their rotation/bulppen, adding two expereinced pitchers in Bartolo Colon and R.A. Dickey.
Colon is going into his twentieth year in the majors. Early in the 2017 he will reach the ripe of forty-four, which is probably why the Braves signed him on for just one year.
R.A. Dickey may not be as old (although he did just turn forty-two), but he has gone through injuries and his game has depriciated over the past few seasons to a point that it is unclear if he can be useful in the bullpen or if he can fit in towards the back of the rotation.
His knuckleball just doesn’t have the same swurve as it did during his best years with the New York Mets from 2009-2012.
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And, for the Phillies and Howie Kendrick (who seems like a youngster in the league at thirty-two compared to the Braves signings) his numbers aren’t declining (yet) but, let’s see how he fits in with the Phillies lineup.
The Phillies have a very young and inexperienced bullpen, so even if Kendrick’s number do taper off, at least he can help the rest of the infield (all of whom are twenty-six or younger) grow as players.
It is pure speculation to think that all of these players could dominate or struggle on their teams, but the sole fact that these organizations are bringing in “bigger name” players, shows a commitment to trying to make their clubs better.
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Mariners fans have welcomed small time players like Ryan Weber and Dean Kiekhefer, and added an a veteran of their own in Carlos Ruiz, but they have yet to make a significant off-season splash that will make Mariners fans around the globe believe that this is their year to end the playoff drought.
The rumors of signing Mike Napoli are nice and the “interest” in Brett Cecil sounds good, but actions speak louder than words, especially words said to appease the hawkish media.
Dipoto has made huge strides to try and turn the Mariners organization around, and the excitment surrounding the club’s near-playoff run last year has re-energized a very supportive and positive-thinking fan base.
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Now, with one hundred and forty-two days left before opening day, Dipoto must act on his words and sign key player(s). He has the pressure to deliver a playoff birth (at least) to the city of Seattle in order to heal the many wounds that the Mariners and their fans have suffered over the last fifteen dissappointing years.