The GM Meetings are officially underway. All 30 GMs, including Seattle Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto, is in one location to set the tone for their team’s off-season. Today, we focus on one of the Mariners most intriguing trade chips.
The Mariners have a lot of valuable trade chips. Obviously, guys like Mitch Haniger, Edwin Diaz, and Marco Gonzales could fetch the Mariners quite a haul. Then you have the group that includes James Paxton, Alex Colome, Mike Leake, and Jean Segura. They are really good and valuable players, who also happen to be making a little bit of money.
Of course, you have the expensive players it’ll be next to impossible to trade like Felix Hernandez, Robinson Cano, and Kyle Seager. But there is another group of Mariners who don’t quite fit into any category. That is, they are a decent big league talent who isn’t making a ton of money, but isn’t a great player.
In case you guys forgot, this July Yahoo’s Jeff Passan dropped some interesting notes, including that the Kansas City Royals were ” poking around” on Ryon Healy. Of course, nothing really came of the talks. However, we recently got this little nugget from Jason Churchill:
While both of these nuggets are rather insignificant, they are, nonetheless, the most amount of info we have on anybody from the Pazos, Gamel, Healy grouping. Clearly, Ryon Healy has value around the game. Just how much is another question.
It isn’t difficult to see why some teams, particularly rebuilding teams with a need at first base, would be interested in Healy. The big right-hander has 30 home run power and is a career .265 hitter. He is also just 27-years-old and isn’t even arbitration eligible until after next season.
However, Healy hasn’t shown an ability to take walks in the past 2 seasons, and is a nightmare defender at third, while being below-average at first base. So despite having impressive right-handed power with 4 years of club control from his age 27-30 seasons, the return for Healy won’t be that impressive.
In the trade to acquire Healy, Dipoto gave up Emilio Pagan and Alexander Campos. Pagan was a middle-reliever with 5 years of club control and Campos was a lottery ticket shortstop who is still 3+ years away from sniffing the big leagues.
It is this type of package that makes the most sense for Seattle. With Cano likely handling first base most of the 2019 season, Healy is one of the more obvious trade targets moving forward. However, with Cano and Dee Gordon‘s flexibility, and the opening at DH as well, the team will not have to move Healy unless they get a great offer.
In fact, Healy still has all 3 minor league options left, making him an easy candidate to stash in AAA Tacoma to start the year. There is no guarantee that Healy will be dealt. But if he can land a solid middle-reliever, like Shane Greene or Alex Wilson, it makes for an interesting conversation. As does the possibility of a high-floor, low ceiling arm who is either close to big league ready or has some big league seasoning.
Unlike many of our previous articles, the odds of Ryon Healy getting traded are quite high, at least by baseball prediction standpoint. I would put the odds at about 40%. With Cano and Gordon in place and other options available to the team, it could make sense to trade Healy. Perhaps more sense than it is to keep him.