Seattle Mariners: Jerry Dipoto’s 5 Best Trades
By Ty Gonzalez
NOVEMBER 18, 2016: ACQUIRED LHP JAMES PAZOS FROM NEW YORK
Not much was known about James Pazos before Jerry Dipoto swung a deal for him with Brian Cashman’s Yankees. He was a downhill thrower with a lot of strikeout potential, but struggled when given the opportunity to pitch at the Major League level. Seattle was also giving up on Zack Littell, who was quickly rising the ranks to be one of their top pitching prospects in a relatively depleted farm system.
Honestly, it didn’t make a whole lot of sense at first. Pazos had some potential, but Littell was close to being Major League ready and the M’s were desperate for young starting pitching talent. Well, this is one of those deals that shows that the front office may know a little bit more than you do as a fan.
Pazos has gone on to be one of the more dominant presences in Seattle’s bullpen over the last two season, and despite a significant regression late in 2018, Pazos was one of the better left-handed relievers in baseball last year. Meanwhile, Littell was involved in a trade that awarded the Yankees Jaime García, and disappointed in his first season with the Twins.
Left-handed relief is a very thin market in the MLB, so getting solid production out of Pazos for cheap and with four more years of club control is a great deal for Seattle moving forward.