There are a lot of rumors being floated around the Mariners this offseason. Just about every story on MLB.com covering the offseason has the Mariners involved in one way or another. The Mariners have already traded Mike Zunino and James Paxton. They have acquired good prospects and a new starting center fielder in Mallex Smith.
This can be a fun time for Mariners fans, seeing their team being talked about on the National level. Maybe for the wrong reasons at times, but I know when I’m scrolling through Twitter and I see the Mariners name, I stop and read or watch. That was the case today when MLB Network’s twitter tweeted a video talking about a potential trade of Robinson Cano to the Mets. You can watch that video here.
Also, Here is the trade that former Colorado Rockies GM Dan O’Dowd proposed:
In the video, Dan O’Dowd talked about a potential trade involving Robinson Cano, Mallex Smith and Edwin Diaz for Jay Bruce, Dominic Smith, and their top prospect shortstop Andres Giminez. Now, I know what you’re thinking. And you’re probably right. How on Earth does the trade he proposes make any sense? I will try my best to be impartial and give my opinion in the end.
Dan explains that the Mets will take all of the money owed to Cano, and that is why the price tag includes Edwin Diaz and Mallex Smith. He also says that he, hypothetically speaking as the Mets GM, would sit down with Cano and his representatives and say they will change the last 3 years of his deal, front-loading the deal.
Cano is due 120 Million over the next 5 seasons. He was suspended last season for 80 games, for PED usage. Robbie was also hurt during his suspension when he took a pitch off of his wrist. He had surgery to repair the break and was back playing on August 14. When he came back, he tried 1st base out and did not look good there. Cano was a fan favorite, but with the PED suspension, he may have fallen out of favor with the Mariners fans.
But this is such a steep price to move 120 million dollars over the next 5 seasons. Edwin Diaz is arguably the best closer in baseball and has 4 years of club control left. He saved 57 games in 2018, 2nd all time behind Francisco Rodriguez‘ 62 in 2008. Diaz is a player that is being talked about a lot in the MLB community, and I do think the Mariners will trade him this offseason. But not at the cost for moving Cano’s contract to another team.
The last player Dan O’Dowd has going to the Mets is newly acquired OF Mallex Smith. If you remember 2 seasons ago, the Mariners acquired Smith from the Atlanta Braves for LHP prospect Luiz Gohara. Then traded him that same day to the Rays for LHP Drew Smyly. Not one of Dipoto’s best moves, as both Smith and Gohara both, played for their respective new teams. Smyly did not pitch for the Mariners in the regular season after needing Tommy John surgery.
With all of that being said, that is such a hefty price just to rid yourself of 120 million over 5 years. So how does the return look like? Jay Bruce. Bruce is owed $26 million over the next 2 seasons, and is most likely just a throw-in in this deal to offset some costs for the Mets. Bruce hit just .223 in 94 games in 2018 and has been on a steady decline for the last season and a half.
The next player Mr. O’Dowd is sending the Mariners is 1B Dominic Smith. Smith was a first-round pick back in 2013. He has since been somewhat of a bust in the Major Leagues so far in his career, hitting just .210/.259/.406. Smith doesn’t walk at all, and that shows by his horrific on-base percentage. It makes sense that the Mets would want to move Smith, as their #2 prospect Peter Alonso will be taking over their starting first base job in 2019.
The last piece coming to Seattle would be Andres Giminez. He would be the “get” in this move. He is currently ranked #55 on MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 Prospects page. He has a plus hit tool, no power to speak of and is an above average base stealer. He is also expendable because of what the Mets have in the majors at shortstop in Ahmed Rosario. Giminez is a nice player and would be an exciting player to watch come through Seattle.
BUT, this is still by far the worst trade proposal I have ever seen. Dan O’Dowd was a respected GM of the Rockies from 1999-2014. He took the 2008 team to the World Series, only to be swept by the Boston Red Sox. He signed and developed big-name players such as Troy Tulowitzki and Matt Holliday. But he also shelled out $121 million over 8 years to Mike Hampton! At the time, that was the largest contract in baseball history.
He brings up Hampton’s contract in the video, citing that he had to add OF Juan Pierre in the deal to hide the albatross that was Mike Hampton’s contract. He even goes on to say that his situation with Hampton is “no different” from Jerry Dipoto‘s situation with Cano. That is baffling to me. Hampton turned out to be a mega bust for the Rockies. Cano has played extremely well in his time with the Mariners and even won an All-Star game MVP award back in 2017. Seems a bit different to me.
This deal makes perfect sense for the Mets. They can’t lose on this deal. Giminez is a nice player but he isn’t the type to turn a franchise around. The case could be made that Edwin Diaz is that type of player. Back in 1999, Jerry Dipoto was a pitcher for the Rockies. His GM? Dan O’Dowd. O’Dowd saying that this is a good trade for the Mariners, to me, is him questioning the intelligence of Jerry Dipoto and Mariners fans everywhere. I wonder what their relationship was back in 1999 and 2000.
Maybe in wrong. Maybe that is exactly what the price tag would be to move Robinson Cano. But if that is what it would cost to move Cano, then keep him. There is not a top second base prospect in the farm waiting on the Majors. Cano is not blocking anyone from playing time in the Majors. In my opinion, the trade that Dan O’Dowd proposed is laughable. If he really thinks this is a good move for Seattle to make, then that is probably why Dan O’Dowd is not a General Manager in baseball anymore.