Popular questions in MLBTR chats often involve the Mariners trading impending free agents Erik Bedard, Jarrod Washburn, and Adrian Beltre. Not so fast. The Mariners are 12-7, in first place in the AL West. Why worry about trading off veterans? Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times asked GM Jack Zduriencik about it:
"Honestly, I have really not thought once about July — about what happens in July. I want to be in this position as we move forward. Being in first place and winning. We're doing this the right way. I think players need to be happy with it, with how we're going about things. If you're this group of players, you've got to be excited. They deserve to be where they're at and things take care of themselves.''
How are the Mariners doing it? They should probably be 10-9, based on their +5 run differential, but those extra wins are in the bank. The Ms are 11th in the AL with 4.21 runs scored per game; Beltre, Jose Lopez, Yuniesky Betancourt, and Franklin Gutierrez have been easy outs. The Mariners have instead succeeded with strong pitching and defense. They rank second in the AL with a 3.50 ERA, and that includes 6.14 from Carlos Silva and 7.11 from Chris Jakubauskas.