Tweak 3: Upgrade the Bench
When the Seattle Mariners sent down Ben Gamel to make room for Cameron Maybin, fans were not happy. After all, Ben Gamel has consistently been one of the best bats for the Mariners. Guillermo Heredia has been quite bad at the plate since June 1.
The idea of having a defense first 4th outfielder makes some sense on paper. But Heredia isn’t significantly better than Dee Gordon in CF, and Span and Gamel can handle a corner spot well enough that Heredia just doesn’t make sense.
Add on top of that the recent struggles of the Mariners offense, and you’ve got no reason to be sitting on one of your better bats in AAA Tacoma.
Ben Gamel needs to be back on the big league roster, and it needs to happen sooner or later. Even if you believe that Denard Span should get a majority of the time in LF (like I do), there is no question having Gamel as a pinch-hitting option is an upgrade over Heredia. In addition, Gamel is actually a better base-runner than Heredia.
The simple truth is, you don’t need a 4th outfielder like Heredia. And after the return of Robinson Cano, the right-handed bat off the bench is likely going to be Ryon Healy. Heredia has 2 options left, so you can bring him back up in September.
Heredia is a nice player and does have some value to the team going forward. However, he was exposed as an everyday player, and Ben Gamel is just unequivocally better. Make the swap ASAP.