Mariners' offseason moves landed Seattle baseball's best pitching staff

The Mariners have made some notable additions to their pitching this offseason, and it's set them up to have the best overall pitching in the majors for 2024

Texas Rangers v Seattle Mariners
Texas Rangers v Seattle Mariners / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

Heading into the 2024 offseason, the Mariners had a handful of issues and problems with the offense. There was a lot of strikeouts and concerns that needed to be addressed. It's a separate story for another article. The one concern that the team didn't have was their pitching.

Many argued that the starting rotation was one of the best in baseball. You had two pitchers finish in the top 10 of Cy Young voting, were going into 2024 with three pitchers in the top 10 of Cy Young odds, and had a young pair of potential studs locking down your fourth and fifth spots in the rotation that it seemed like every team in baseball wanted to acquire via trade during the offseason. Nothing was going to change there, even if a lot of us wanted the Mariners to sign Blake Snell.

The Mariners have the best pitching in all of baseball

The bullpen was strong, that was apparent. Brash and Munoz were a nasty two-headed monster that made the end of games miserable for the opponent. It started to get a bit worrisome when the Mariners traded away not just Isaiah Campbell but, arguably more importantly, traded away Justin Topa as well. It brought them answers to second base and third base (well, supposed answers), but left the bullpen wanting. Was it strong enough or deep enough? Could the lab figure it out?

A major piece was slotted in when the Mariners surprised everyone by making a trade with the White Sox for Gregory Santos. Santos had a stellar 2023 and gave the Mariners three relievers to scare opposing hitters. When healthy, you were looking at what could be the best end-of-game bullpen since the Royals made their World Series runs in 2014 and 2015.

That wasn't the end, though. The newest move, and another surprising one, was to see the Mariners sign Ryne Stanek to their bullpen. Not only did this make the Mariners' bullpen that much better, but it was essentially stealing away a key piece from a division rival, as Stanek has been a big part of the Astros' success over the last three seasons.

Stanek. Santos. Brash. Munoz.

Are you kidding me? This is amazing and puts the Mariners in an incredible position. Yes, there are worries about Brash and Santos with their injuries, but it sounds like they are both fine and should be back on the bump for the Mariners by the end of April. You know what? Maybe it's a blessing in disguise to limit their innings and appearances, and give some other members of the pen some opportunities they otherwise may not see.

Oh, don't forget about Gabe Speier too. He was pretty good last season.

Imagine seeing something like this in a series, and having to try and figure out both the how and the when of scoring runs.

Castillo throws 7. Santos the 8th. Munoz the 9th.
Kirby throws 6. Stanek the 7th. Brash the 8th. Munoz the 9th.
Gilbert throws 6. Speier the 7th. Santos the 8th. Brash the 9th.

Neither of them throw more than two appearances. You only throw Stanek and Speier once. Miller has a rough start to the next game and has to be pulled after 3 innings? Well, you throw Voth 2 innings, then Speier, then Stanek. Then Thornton. Then Saucedo.

Yeah, that's disgusting. Good luck against that. Now your top three relievers are all rested, so even if Woo goes 5 the next day, you can throw Voth for two more innings, then Brash and Santos.

I think you get the point. The Mariners are going to be able to rotate through this bullpen, pitching to their heart's desire on matchups, all the while limiting appearances. You get to the playoffs?! Yeah, that's gonna be the cream of the crop, even possibly with a 4-man rotation and Miller/Woo as a combined 4th starter.

The Mariners pitching staff isn't just good. It's the best in baseball. From start to finish, front to back, and 1st inning to the 9th inning, there isn't a better one in baseball. Atlanta? Philly? New York? Crippled Houston? Nope. Give me the Mariners today, tomorrow, in May, and in October. With what the Mariners have done this offseason, they have the best pitching in baseball... and the rest of the league better take note and bring their A game, or else they're gonna go home with a big L.