Recently, we wrote about Samardzija as a potential trade target for the Mariners this off-season, so we don’t need to go into too much detail. For a more in-depth look, click here. But to keep things brief, Samardzija is a good pitcher who can help save innings on the young arms and recoup prospects in a trade this summer.
Samardzija is entering the final year of his contract and is due to make $19.5 million with the San Francisco Giants. San Francisco is looking to shed payroll this year and as such, players like Samardzija and Brandon Belt should be available.
Samardzija had a nice 2019 season, so he will have some interest around the league, especially if the Giants are willing to eat some of his salary. But that doesn’t mean the Mariners can’t acquire him.
Seattle has the payroll space to absorb the entire deal and Samardzija has an opportunity to gain value with a solid first half. He raises the floor of the current rotation and allows for the team to compete early without trying to rush Justin Dunn and Logan Gilbert.
Samardzija isn’t a sexy name and probably won’t be on the team past July, but rentals can have value to rebuilding teams as well. How great was Edwin Encarnacion for the Mariners in 2019? Samardzija could be more of the same on the pitching side of the game.
The cost to acquire won’t be cheap, but won’t cost you any top 10 prospects and probably nothing in the Top 15. In short, he is good, cheap, already on the block, and a great fit for Seattle’s needs for the first part of 2020. Samardzija makes a lot of sense and as such, finds his way onto our list.