It has been a while since Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto has made a trade and we all know that wouldn’t stand for long. Well today, rumors began to surface that he was talking to the Phillies to try and make another trade.
The player at the center of these rumors is 32-year-old outfielder/first baseman, Jay Bruce. Early reports indicate the Mariners and Phillies may be close to pulling the trigger on a deal to send Bruce to the city of brotherly love.
These rumors began early this morning and the story continues to take some twist and turns. The first reports came from ESPN’s Jeff Passan:
While these things tend to change, the specific wording of this deal is strong enough to consider this as close to a lock of happening. Passan himself tweeted minutes later that a deal wasn’t going to happen quickly:
A while back, we wrote about a possible fit between Bruce and the Phillies, and perhaps the biggest obstacle that remains is how much money the Mariners are willing to eat of Bruce’s contract. Bruce is due $20 million for the remainder of his 2-year deal.
While details have yet to be divulged, but we did get this interesting report from Matt Gelb:
This could be good news or bad news. Certainly, not having to pay that salary could help the Mariners afford a veteran this off-season or take on money in future trades to better their prospect haul. But the team isn’t in any danger of the luxury tax threshold and if they aren’t sending a lot of money to Bruce, any hope for a decent prospect is just about shot.
We will have to wait and see what the return for Bruce will be, but don’t expect anything to get excited about. Also, be on the lookout for a salary dump in this deal, as Dipoto has done in the Jean Segura, Robinson Cano/Edwin Diaz, and Carlos Santana trade. Former Mariners reliever Juan Nicasio could be an option.
While there are still a lot of things that could prevent a deal from coming to fruition, all the warning signs are present for a deal to be finalized soon. We will continue to monitor the situation and update you throughout this saga.