Major League Baseball’s trading deadline is at 1:00 PM PT today.
As I’m writing this, that’s a little over four hours from now. In between now and then, the Mariners are expected to execute at least one or two deals. Of the names that could be moved, Roenis Elías, Mike Leake, and Tim Beckham appear to be the most likely, with an off chance for Domingo Santana as well.
For Santana specifically, both of his rumored suitors, Tampa Bay and Cleveland, have either cooled off on him or have looked elsewhere to address their needs. Leake, on the other hand, agreed to waive his no-trade clause yesterday, but a deal never went through and he went on to make his start against Texas.
There’s still some buzz circling around Leake, however, and with names such as Noah Syndergaard reportedly staying put today, the starting pitching market is growing smaller by the minute. The same thing is going on in the relief market, with Felipe Vázquez, Kirby Yates, and Ken Giles all expected to stick with their current teams for various reasons, which bodes well for the Mariners’ pursuit of a deal for Elías.
In fact, Elías may be their most valuable trade chip of all at this point. The Rangers somehow turned 33-year-old reliever Chris Martin (who’s having a solid year, don’t get me wrong) into Kolby Allard, a top pitching prospect in an elite Atlanta Braves farm system. The market for left-handed relievers is paper thin and Elías has two more years left of club control at the age of 30. At the very least, a comparable return to that of the Martin deal ideally should be in the cards.
It should be an exciting few hours for Mariners fans, as Jerry Dipoto looks to knock a few items off his to-do list before an important offseason. Because of all the rumors and reports that will be thrown out leading up to the deadline, Colby and I will keep this post updated with all the latest Mariners news and rumblings.
Update 1, 8:37 AM: Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times is reporting that the Mariners are still motivated to trade Mike Leake before the deadline. He also adds that the Rangers would have interest in Leake if they’re successful in trading Mike Minor.
Update 2, 9:25 AM: The Tampa Bay Rays, likely the last team with a realistic shot of dealing for Domingo Santana, have reportedly acquired first baseman Jesús Aguilar from the Milwaukee Brewers. In all likelihood, that means Santana will be staying put and the Mariners will look to deal him in the winter when he’s more healthy.
Update 3, 11:04 AM: Per Ken Rosenthal, the Washington Nationals are attempting to work out a deal to acquire Roenis Elías from the Mariners. Rosenthal notes that he’s unsure if a deal is close or not. Stay tuned.
Update 4, 11:09 AM: The New York Post’s Joel Sherman has reported that, along with the Nationals, two other teams are inquiring about Elías.
Update 5, 11:12 AM: Roenis Elías has been traded to the Washington Nationals, per Sherman. Trade details still unknown.
Update 6, 11:30 AM: The Mariners are receiving pitching prospects Taylor Guilbeau and Elvis Alvarado from the Nationals in the Elías deal. Most notably, Guilbeau is the Nationals’ 14th-ranked prospect by MLB Pipeline.
Update 7, 11:36 AM: Apparently, the Nationals are rather partial to the bullpen arms Seattle has. They’ve now also acquired Hunter Strickland, who was just activated from the 60-day Injured List, and have sent the M’s 23-year-old left-handed relief prospect Aaron Fletcher.
Update 8, 12:53 PM: Seven minutes to go until the deadline and pretty much radio silence on the Mariners’ front. They may be done.
Update 9, 1:04 PM: The deadline is here, but no word yet on if the Mariners pulled off any last-second deals or not.
Update 10, 1:09 PM: NEVERMIND! Mike Leake has reportedly been traded to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Awaiting details.
Update 11, 1:16 PM: While the insanity continues post-deadline, we have some news on the prospect return for Leake. The Mariners will be getting infield prospect Jose Caballero, who’s currently slashing .268/.388/.396 in High-A. Still no word on the financial side of things, though we’ll be posting a bigger breakdown of the deal once we hear about that.