The Mariners have a need at catcher. Tom Murphy, Jose Godoy, Luis Torrens, and Cal Raleigh all struggled there this year, although the reasons were different. Godoy was inexperienced. Torrens is probably a first base/DH guy instead because of defense. Murphy had a disappointing season after a wonderful 2019. Raleigh was playing his rookie year. If the team is looking for a replacement there, they could call up the Twins about Mitch Garver.
I’ve done plenty of these trade proposals. It’s what you think about as a fan. Ways that the team could get better and improve. Maybe it’s just me, but it’s always on my mind. Shoot, it’s what my friends and I loved doing when we played any kind of sports game together.
This time though, it’s not just me that’s doing it. I checked in with our resident Twins experts over at Pucketts Pond to work on a Garver trade. It took a bit of back and forth, but we ended up agreeing on the following.
Sodo Mojo and Pucketts Pond have agreed on a trade for Mitch Garver
Severino is #26 in the Twins system. He’s a switch hitter who might end up being a utility guy unless the bat continues to improve. His eye has gotten better, as evidenced by a .273/.372/.430 this season, although he did rake at High A, with a slash line of .321/.414/.493 in 157 PAs. His go-to position is second but can play third as well. The infield ability increases his value for the Mariners since the team is a bit weak there in their farm system depth.
Alex Scherff isn’t ranked but is a high strikeout reliever who struck out 46 through 29.1 innings in A+/AA in 2021, with a 2.45 ERA. He used to be a starter, but moved to a reliever in 2021 and saw his K rate skyrocket. As a hard-throwing reliever, he makes for a nice final piece to the trade.
The main piece though is Garver. We would be making a trade like this for him, not for the prospects coming along with him. He actually is at the same point in his contract as Tom Murphy, hitting Arb 2 this offseason, Arb 3 next year, and becomes a FA for the 2024 season.
Throw out 2020, it doesn’t seem indicative of Garver’s ability, and it was a weird season for everyone. Otherwise, his career slash line looks like .267/.353/.522. Yeah, I’ll take that all day. Garver even has serviceable defense, putting up dWAR numbers of 0.3 and 0.6 in 2021 and 2019, respectively.
You may be thinking “Garver is a full-time guy, right? Wouldn’t he be taking away from Raleigh?” He actually wouldn’t, as Garver has had 335, 359, and 243 PAs over the last 3 real seasons (again, throwing out 2020), which makes him a great platoon guy. You also don’t really need to worry about splits with him. He just plain hits, regardless of if he is facing an LHP or an RHP.
Garver is going to be 31 this upcoming season. At this point in his career, I don’t see a push being made for him to try and be a full-time catcher. Your catcher is going to get 600 ABs in a season, and Garver should be good for about 300 of them.
Yes, we have to give up Deloach to get him. That might be a tough pill to swallow. He’s a great outfielder and a good prospect. The Mariners have a lot of outfielders, and the only way Deloach gets there is if the others in front of him fail. Sometimes, trading a prospect like him to immediately solve a need is a good idea. I’m not happy to give up Deloach, but a Garver/Raleigh platoon at catcher could improve the team a good amount for 2022.