Depending on when and where you look, there are multiple rumors going around concerning what the Mariners plans are heading into the deadline. No rentals. No mortgaging the future. Had a competitive offer for Frazier. They’re in on Trae Turner. They’re trying to get Whit Merrifield. All of them have some backing of truth. We know the Mariners want an infielder and a right-handed one at that. That’s why they could be calling the Diamondbacks about Eduardo Escobar.
Escobar is a switch-hitter, so he fits the “right-handed” box that the Mariners are looking to check. He can also play second, as that has been his most positive position on the year. He is able to play third but is a bit below average there. There’s one more big positive here, and that is the fact that he will be a free agent after this year.
The Mariners could find some players in Arizona that could help them, including Eduardo Escobar.
At 32, he’s coming to the end of the three-year deal that he signed with the Diamondbacks. There is little-to-no chance that he re-signs with them, as an aging vet usually only wants two things. To play for a title or a boatload of cash. It doesn’t seem like Arizona would open the vault for him, so neither of those would be options for him.
Everything out there makes it sound as if Escobar is not an “if” but a “when” he gets traded guy. The Mariners could look to take advantage of that. They’ve had successful dealings with the Diamondbacks before, and goodwill goes a long way.
Escobar is going to be a reasonable piece to get, but there is a caveat. There are a handful of teams that want him, meaning his price is going up. That’s how a market price works though, if five teams want him, Arizona can ask for a lot more than his standard value would be. I put together a few trades like that, where the Mariners would give up a decent crop, but nothing too substantial.
There are three types of trades they could look at doing. The first two become somewhat interchangeable, although I listed them as having one be for pitching, and the other for hitting. Either Deloach or Stoudt and Rizzo or Rinehart for Escobar. Deloach or Stoudt would be the headline, as both seem to be progressing well, and could be major league ready late in 2022, or ready to start in 2023.
Rizzo and Rinehart are the long shots and are honestly the type of player that you normally see packaged on the back end of the deal. Rizzo has been in and out of the Mariners top 30 but is still only 23 years old. Rinehart could be ready as a bullpen guy next year, and finding a serviceable reliever in a trade for someone who is planning on leaving is always a win.
The last one is close to the “dream” Diamondbacks trade for me. Getting a good pitcher and a new second baseman. Kelly would instantly fill the hole in the rotation, and we clear a spot for Escobar by sending the D-Backs Shed Long. Most Mariners fans like Long, but being clutch isn’t normally a stat that can stay hot. Trammell gets his chance to play, and Adcock is a flier for a pitcher down the line.
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Eduardo Escobar would provide that multi-positional flexibility that the Mariners seem to covet, but at a higher level. We know that he is going to be available as the Diamondbacks look to build for the future. Escobar could be a great, relatively low-cost trade for the Mariners to make as they shoot for the playoffs in 2021.