Oh the MLB rumor mill is really cooking with gas now. Every day, new names are added to the fray of available talents and for the 3rd time in 18 months, one former Mariners fan is available to other teams.
Of course, the pitcher who is said to be available is Matt Boyd of the Detroit Tigers. This shouldn’t be a surprise to any Mariners fan. Every 3 months all the blogs in Seattle are checking in on the Matt Boyd market(including us in July). The Tigers have made him available at every opportunity, but with their major asking price, they have been unable to find a deal.
Reports of their current asking price are similar to what they had been in the past. The Tigers are looking for a potential, impact position player who is either in the big leagues or close to the making their debut.
We know the Mariners have been interested in acquiring Boyd in the past, but whether or not they have remained interested is a mystery. But with GM Jerry Dipoto on the quest for pitching, in addition to the past interest in Boyd, it is safe to assume that Seattle will at least be involved in some way.
The Tigers may have missed their best chance to deal Boyd this summer when he entered the All-Star break with 142 strikeouts in 107 innings while surrendering just 20 walks and posting a 3.87 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP.
Boyd couldn’t continue his success in the second half, where his ERA ballooned to a 5.51 mark and he gave up more home runs and walked 10 more hitters in those 78.1 innings than he did in the first half. But Boyd is still entering his age-29 season with 3 years of club control, so there will be interest.
As with any possibility, the question of a player acquisition really comes down to cost. Only this time, we know what the cost will be. Or at least, we know what the asking price is. But when you look at the Mariners, there isn’t an obvious fit.
The MLB impact bat could be Mitch Haniger and that could work. Both players are entering their age-29 season. Both have long stretches of being more than just everyday players. And both have 3-years of club control remaining. But is either side going to take this deal? It seems unlikely. Both Detroit and Seattle would likely try to add control years in such a trade and this deal doesn’t accommodate that.
The Mariners certainly won’t deal away Jarred Kelenic or Julio Rodriguez, making the next possible match Evan White. Dealing 6 years of club control in White for Boyd is tough for the Mariners and the Tigers may not consider White to be an “impact” bat anyways. You really have to get to the Jake Fraley or Kyle Lewis level before the deal starts to make sense for Seattle.
But is Detroit going to be blown away by either of them being a headliner? Probably not. On the surface, some kind of Haniger and a prospect for Boyd and prospect deal might make sense. But unless Detroit’s asking price has dropped, Seattle shouldn’t be interested in a bidding war for a guy like Boyd.
I would be a little surprised if the Mariners aren’t in some way involved in Boyd trade talks, but unless the Tigers are going to be reasonable, there just isn’t an obvious fit between these two teams regarding Boyd.