We may not know how many trades Jerry Dipoto will make in the next two weeks or how aggressive he may be in the market, but what we do know is that he will be active.
And as the days draw closer to the July 31 trading deadline, the likelihood of a deal popping up on our collective Twitter feeds increases. But not every trade is a blockbuster. Not for the Mariners or any other team. Some of Dipoto’s best deals have come in the middle of the week, starring a pair of minor leaguers or a stumbling major leaguer.
Seattle’s most glaring need, just like the 29 other teams in MLB, is pitching. And while Dipoto may take a flyer or two on some arms in the coming days, the pitching the Mariners now need would require something a bit more on a larger scale. This summer, however, may not be the most appropriate time to do so.
Whatever they wind up doing, it will be critical to the progress of their ‘step-back.’ This deadline, for better or worse, is the stepping stone Dipoto requires to set himself up for an important 2019-20 offseason. The Mariners may not be competitive in 2020, but that won’t discourage Dipoto from being aggressive in adding to his ballclub for the future. And if a trade now can potentially solidify a position of need, it’s one less thing to worry about come November.
Today, we aren’t looking at surefire blockbuster deals that will automatically cement a starting position player for years, or a pitcher of high regard. Instead, because we know Dipoto will make a deal or two of this stature, we’re going to pose three minor trades for hitters that are either blocked at the MLB level, have run out their welcome with their current organization, or are just flat-out intriguing.