Reason #1 to Leave: A refusal to sign free agent contracts
It's not just recently that this has been apparent, it's sort of just always been a thing with the Mariners. You could actually argue that they've been more aggressive on this front, since they did sign Robbie Ray to the second largest FA contract in team history. Shoot, the Mitch Garver one, at 2YR/$24M, is the 11th largest FA contract in team history, and would move to the 8th if the mutual option is taken.
Right there lies the problem. A 2YR/$24M shouldn't sniff the top ten FA contracts handed out in a team's history, especially one that has been around since the 70s. The Dodgers just handed out $70M less to two players than the Mariners have spent in free agency in their history as a franchise.
Is this from ownership? Is it the Front Office thinking they are smart enough to do it via trades? It can be hard to tell, and it isn't something that we will really ever get an honest answer on, I don't think.
It does suck to see though, knowing that your biggest signing is going to be AJ Pollock... cause we all know how that turns out. You have to sit through free agency and watch players go to other teams, and the only hope is that a trade is going to happen. Speaking of trades...