Trade-A-Day Series: Mark Canha – The Romine Replacement
By Tyler Wicke
Jerry Dipoto and the Mariners will surely be ‘buyers’ before this seasons trade deadline, but could they take one of their rival’s assets as October approaches?
After a recent slump, the Mariners sits in the last playoff spot for the American League, yet only three games ahead of the division rival Oakland Athletics. As teams are gearing up for the playoff push, Dipoto may look for another important bat. The offense has fallen flat throughout the first half of July, and Robinson Cano cannot play until mid-August.
Seattle fans already knew that utility player Andrew Romine was not a premier hitter. But if we learned anything from the Angels’ 11-2 rout over Seattle on July 12, it was that he cannot pitch either. Romine is far from an everyday player that has been detrimental to the team, and he has failed to drive in a run this season. So what can Dipoto do to boost the Mariner offense? Replace him.
Fun Fact: Utility player Andrew Romine has more earned runs as a pitcher in 1 inning (2 ER) than he does RBIs offensively (he is batting 16 for 79 on the year with 0 RBIs).
Why look outside the division to make a trade when a player like Mark Canha has been a driving force behind the A’s playoff push? The 29-year-old has primarily played in the outfield this season but can play first base. His batting average sits at a decent .263 but is a vast improvement when compared to Andrew Romine’s .203. In addition, his .803 OPS shatters Romine’s .465.
Canha has also been a valuable pinch hitter for Oakland this season, including his memorable go-ahead HR against the Giants with a theatrical bat-flip that sparked controversy across the MLB world. His “I don’t really care” response to the criticism portrays the scrappiness of the Athletics’ offense and their ‘no-mercy’ attitude. Ripping away a valuable asset from Oakland and adding him to a talented Seattle roster would be a significant acquisition.
How could Mark Canha end up in a Mariners uniform? Here is what we propose:
The Mariners acquire Mark Canha from Oakland for outfielder Guillermo Heredia and reliever Nick Rumbelow.
The A’s are close to making the playoffs and will certainly be buyers before the deadline as well. To make this deal work, Seattle will have to trade one of their starters in addition to a young bullpen arm in order to upgrade their starting lineup.
In this deal, the Mariners add another clutch hitter to the lineup without losing depth in the outfield. Because Seattle would lose a Heredia, the Mariners could keep Romine on the team. But with Haniger, Gamel and Span still in the lineup, Canha would almost surely pinch hit over Romine in situations where he is not already starting.
Because Oakland would lose an important outfield piece, the Mariners would trade Guillermo Heredia, who has 82 games under his belt this year. He has been the go-to center fielder this season, providing Oakland with a solution to fill the void with Canha in Seattle.
Guillermo has speed and can provide as an everyday outfielder along with pinch-hitting and pinch-running value. His .231 batting average is below Canha’s, but Oakland would also receive a young bullpen arm in this potential trade.
In addition to Heredia, Seattle would send Oakland a young reliever in Nick Rumbelow. He has appeared in 8 games this season, pitching just 10.1 innings. His rocky season with the Mariners currently has him in Triple-A Tacoma, due to his 7.84 ERA in the majors.
However, Rumbelow shows potential, allowing just one hit in 5 innings with the Rainiers this season. His control will be the key as he progresses through his career, and the Athletics could add to their bullpen in addition to receiving an instant replacement for Mark Canha.
Rumbelow would add to Oakland’s bullpen without tampering with Seattle’s current pitching staff. With the addition of Mark Canha, Seattle’s offense could improve without the sacrifice of a major-league arm.
Next: Mariners Trade a Day: Nick Castellanos
Canha’s value on both sides of the field may earn him a starting role in center field. He would provide depth both in the lineup and around the diamond. Seattle looks to head to the postseason for the first time in 2001, but Oakland is hot on their tracks. Could the Mariners look to add a utility player and leave the Athletics in the dust?