As we get closer to June and July, one of the common topics around the Seattle Mariners will be their trade pieces. Who all is going to be available? Well, that might be an article for a different day. The guy we are here to talk about today is Mitch Haniger.
At some point down the line for the Mariners, as long as things go as the optimistic fan hopes for, we are going to run into a logjam in the outfield. Jarred Kelenic, Julio Rodriguez, Kyle Lewis, Taylor Trammell, Jake Fraley, and a couple of others all sit in line to try their hand in the majors. Then, there is Mitch Haniger. A handful of years older than all the rest, and the only one that could be considered a “Major League Veteran”.
This is just his age 30 season, and with all the time that he has missed over the last couple of years, you could argue that he has a couple of extra years in the tank compared to other players his age. He does still have an extra year of control for the 2022 season, so his value is even higher when you take into account how cheap he is.
What I want to look at is what it would take to get someone like Haniger. For today’s arguments, we are going to get some help from the fantastic website baseballtradevalues.com. They assign pretty good values to each player on a team so that you can put trades together and see how they would fit. They add in things like contract value and years of control, so younger guys, like Kelenic, have tremendous value, as they should.
Unfortunately, that means we are going to be making a bit of good-natured fun of the guys over at Southside Showdown. They recently put up an article looking at some trades that could be made for Haniger, and well… let’s just say they definitely favor the White Sox. You know what? Nothing against them for that. Who doesn’t want to make their team better?
So, what I’m going to do is check the values on those three trades, and then look at one that would come across as more even. Hey, I might even throw one in there that is a little Mariners skewed. The first three will be from the article that Southside Showdown, the fourth will be pretty even, and the fifth and final will be for Mariners fans.
Here are some Mariners/White Sox trades for Mitch Haniger.
Trade One for Mitch Haniger
The first trade from the Sox sees three guys, one of which is an outfielder For Mitch Haniger, he gets a value of 18.1 from the trade values. The three combined White Sox guys get a value of 1.60. Sorry fellas, we aren’t getting anything of value that we need, and nothing that helps us in the long term. Leury Garcia is a free agent after this season, and would likely sit behind younger guys the team would want to see.
Yeah, pitching prospects are nice. Unfortunately, we have Flexen, Sheffield, Dunn, Gilbert, Hancock, and Kirby already. We are going to need something better, and better value throughout to make something work. The site even tells us that, no, the trade will not be accepted. Let’s move on to the second one that Southside recommended.
Trade Two for Mitch Haniger
The second trade sends over the 6th and 16th prospects from the White Sox. When you add these two together, you end up with a value of 4.0. They’re a bit closer, but it still isn’t even in the neighborhood of something Dipoto would consider.
Not only that, those two prospects wouldn’t add much depth for the Mariners, and even Adolfo, the 6th prospect for the White Sox, would likely fall somewhere after Stoudt and Macko who are 14th and 15th for the Mariners, if not lower. Lambert wouldn’t crack the top 30. Let’s keep going and see what the finale holds.
Trade Three for Mitch Haniger
Come on guys. This one returns a value of just 6.2, from the Shite Sox 9th and 12th ranked prospects. For a team that doesn’t have a very good farm system, none of these look that great. I do get it though, as they all would definitely improve the team in the short and long term. If the Sox called the Mariners offering these, and were completely serious, I have a feeling that Trader Jerry would think it was a prank or just hang up.
Let’s move on to something more reasonable, returning some modicum or relative equal value from the White Sox.
Trade Four for Mitch Haniger
This one comes in just in the White Sox favor, with a value comparison of 17.2 to 18.1. Yeah, the White Sox would be giving up a starter and their top prospect. You do have to give up things of value to get a hitter who is showing great power, and the ability to hit for a darn good average too. The Mariners get a young guy to develop for a few years, and Heuer, who they could immediately slot into their six-man rotation.
Now, let’s finish it off with one for the Mariners fans.
Trade Five for Mitch Haniger
Why not? The Mariners need a second baseman badly, and Madrigal would fill that void. This one comes in at 43.3-18.1 in favor of the Mariners, and fits in with the type of trades we saw up above. Haniger fits the need for the Shite Sox outfield, and Madrigal gives the Mariners an answer at second and a young guy they can add to their rebuilding that is going on.
The only one of these that might happen would be number four. The Mariners are going to need to get something of value if they trade away Haniger. He is only 30, has 1.5 years of control left, and is fantastic value. Even if you get just 3.0 WAR from Haniger each season, that is a savings of around $20 million at the minimum when you look at Haniger’s salary this year ($3.01 million) and a $10 million arbitration award next year. Position wins were given $5.7 million per WAR in 2019, and that number usually goes up each year.
What do you think? What would it take to get Haniger? What would we Mariners fans want for the team’s best hitter? Either way, the Mariners are going to need to get something of value in order to make it worth their while.