It appears the Arizona Diamondbacks are ready to rebuild, at least in some regard. Today, we look for a match between the rebuilding team, and the team that refuses to rebuild, the Seattle Mariners.
The initial report of the Diamondbacks came as a bit of a shock to most fans. But shortly after the smoke cleared, Mariners fans everywhere scrambled to identify what part of the wreckage they wanted to scavenge. The report came from USA Today’s Bob Nightengale:
So like you, we couldn’t help but think of the possibilities this news means for the Mariners. So today, we take a look at 5 players who may just make some sense for GM Jerry Dipoto to inquire about.
First things first, Paul Goldschmidt will not be on the list. The superstar has just 1-year left on his contract, so it’s not outside the realm of possibility that Seattle could actually afford him. However, the freight required to acquire Goldschmidt could be so costly it may derail the season before it even begins.
With that in mind, let’s look at 5 names that might just make some sense for the Mariners
Let’s get the big name out of the way. Zack Greinke, the soon-to-be 35-year-old RHP, is 3 years into his 6 years, $206 million contract. With 3 years and $103 million remaining, the cost to acquire Greinke may be totally dependent on how much money Arizona is willing to send with Greinke.
Still a very good pitcher, Greinke probably doesn’t fall into the “ace” category. His velocity has dropped from an average of 92.2 mph in 2016 to 90.0 mph in 2018. Greinke has also seen his HR/FB steadily climb over the past 3 years.
However, Greinke has continued to grow as a pitcher and has the pinpoint control and the plus curveball and changeup to still miss bats. His 3.44 xFIP and 3.5 fWAR in 2018 show a rock solid #2 starter.
If the Mariners can get Greinke’s AAV (average annual value) down into the $20 million range, there isn’t a player in their system that shouldn’t be available, aside from maybe Mitch Haniger. However, if Greinke’s AAV drops too low, Seattle will likely get outbid by a prospect-rich team.
The Mariners best chance to land him will likely require them taking on nearly most of Greinke’s deal. With the assumed self-imposed salary constraints of the Mariners ownership, the likelihood of this coming to fruition is exceedingly low.