The Seattle Mariners are never done sifting through talent this spring and they could be heavily involved in the trade market as we move closer to Opening Day.
One of the annual games being played in Spring Training is the “option game”. Every team participates, including the Mariners. The game is simple: find players who are out of MILB options and watch and see if they are going to make the team.
Last season, the Mariners played this game with Daniel Vogelbach. This year, they’ll play it with Dan Altavilla. But they’ll also be interested in other players who are in similar situations. And if a team is going to expose a player to waivers, they will look to trade that player first. This is why there are traditionally a handful of trades made at the end of spring training.
Jerry Dipoto will watch these markets closely and may find a player or two he can afford to roster for 2020. One of the benefits of being honest and upfront about where your team stands to enter a season is that you can do just about anything and people are so apathetic, they don’t raise much of a fuss. There is no pressure to hit on lottery tickets.
But some of these names aren’t just your run-of-the-mill AAAA type of players. Some have legitimate upside and as such are worthy of trading something for as to not risk losing the player to a waiver claim.
With all that in mind, here are 5 names who are out of options and maybe interesting to the Mariners this spring.
1. Christian Arroyo, INF Cleveland
It wasn’t long ago that Arroyo was on the back-end of some Top 100 Prospects list. He was the headliner of the Evan Longoria trade with a bat that was supposed to carry his otherwise lacking tool belt. Well, things haven’t gone as planned and Arroyo is battling for a roster spot on a team with playoff aspirations.
He only appeared in 49 games in 2019, and while he crushed AAA pitching, he has a career .215/.280/.342 slash line. Arroyo turns 25-years-old at the end of May, so he is still young enough to make an impact for a team without playoff aspirations.
Arroyo is a bit like Mariners prospect Joe Rizzo, a player who lacks the defensive value to overmatch a good hit tool. Arroyo isn’t a burner either making his bat and arm his best tools. He has the arm to handle third and isn’t terrible at third, but the lack of power put Arroyo in a tough spot.