Mariners acquire Jorge Polanco for Ty France and Alberto Rodriguez
Jorge Polanco fits in with the Mariners very well. He slots in as an everyday second baseman, with the ability to cover third and fake it at shortstop. He is due $10.5 million this year as well as a club option for 2025 of $12 million. I think these are both reasonable numbers, but for a club looking to cut payroll, this cuts off nearly half of what they and reportedly looking to shed.
Polanco is coming off a solid 2023, where he slashed .255/.335/.454 with 14 home runs. He was worth 1.5 wins according to fWAR and had a 118 wRC+, which has been right around his career average if you take out a bad 2020 year. This was all in only 80 games. He controls the zone pretty well with a 10.5% walk rate and a 25.7% K rate. He is only going to be 30 and could potentially be your everyday second baseman this year with Josh Rojas moving to a sort of super utility role. Then next year, if Geno leaves, he or Rojas could take over as both are capable of becoming your everyday third baseman. With recent reports that the Mariners are looking to cut back on the strikeouts, Polanco would be a solid addition. He controls the zone pretty well but still possesses good pop.
With recent reports that the Twins could look to upgrade at first base, Ty France could be that guy. France had a down year in 2023, which could be an opportunity for the Twins to buy low as the previous few years, he was an above average hitter, posting a 129 wRC+ in 2021 and a 125 wRC+ in 2022. Both France and Polanco are controlled through next year so they don't lose anything as far as club control goes. For a team that is reportedly looking to shed some payroll, this deal could potentially save some money as France is estimated to earn $7.9 million in arbitration while Polanco is owed $10.5 million this year with a club option of $12 million next year. Rodriguez gives them sort of a lottery pick outfielder. He had a really good 2023 season slashing .300/.381/.504 with 14 home runs between High-A ball and AA.