3 needs the Mariners still have to become serious contenders in the AL West

Over the last month the Mariners have done a good job at changing Mariners fans opinions of the seasons. Today we take a look at 3 needs the Mariners may still have

Wild Card Series - Toronto Blue Jays v Minnesota Twins - Game One
Wild Card Series - Toronto Blue Jays v Minnesota Twins - Game One / Brace Hemmelgarn/GettyImages
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An overlooked need: No. 6 starting pitcher

Coming into this offseason, many thought that the Mariners would be dealing from their depth of young, controllable starting pitching depth in order to acquire some offensive upgrades. The Mariners have made upgrades to the offense and no matter how you slice it, they have raised the overall floor. They have done all of this without having to trade any of their pitching (which is a huge plus, considering their advantage in the AL West has been their starting pitching).

When you look at the rotation after the one through five, it gets a little scary. They have the former first-round pick in Emerson Hancock, along with reliever stretched out Austin Voth, but they are really lacking a number six starter or swingman type of reliever that could really provide a lot of value to this pitching staff.

When you look at pitchers that have already signed, guys like Jakob Junis, former Mariners James Paxton, and Emilio Pagan, the Mariners may have missed out on a few solid options, but that doesn't mean there are none left. One name that could make sense that is still available is Eric Lauer (who was really good in 2021 and 2022 and is just 28 years old until June of 2024), he could be a solid addition to start the year in the rotation to give Woo some innings in the minor leagues to control his innings and could move to the bullpen later in the year. It is also a could position for Lauer to rebuild his value as T-Mobile field is one of the best parks in the MLB for pitchers, and the Mariners have boasted one of the better defenses in recent memory.