Helping The Mariners Find Some Offense

It's no secret that the Mariners came into the season with a plan for extreme run prevention through pitching and top shelf defense, but through 23 games they've scored the third fewest runs in the American League (82) thanks to a paltry .312 team OBP. The problem was as obvious as can be last night, when the Mariners twice had the bases loaded with less than two outs in extra innings, but scored a total of zero runs.

Jason Churchill of Prospect Insider took a look at the team's offensive plight, noting that the farm system offers a little help and that the arrival of Jack Hannahan and possibly Ramon Vazquez will provide just a marginal improvement for the bench. Seattle's designated hitters are hitting just .186/.263/.198, so Churchill offers up some trade suggests to help that situation. Note that the trade talk is based on his speculation only.

The names are not strangers to this space, including Josh Willingham, Adam Dunn, Luke Scott, and Jorge Cantu. All four would represent a demonstrative offensive upgrade, and by slotting them in at DH the team would maintain their run prevention strategy. Seattle has good but not great trade chips, but they might have the ability to absorb some salary, the best trade chip of all.

The Mariners are just half a game back in the league's most winnable division after the season's first month, so it's hardly time to panic. Though the sooner they can improve the DH position, the better.


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20 Comments on "Helping The Mariners Find Some Offense"


5 years 3 months ago

Raul Ibanez? I’m sure the Phillies wouldn’t mind being freed of some of that salary.

Ferrariman
5 years 3 months ago

NO TRADE CLAUSE

Yankee_Baal
5 years 3 months ago

It’s not crazy to imagine him breaking it to go back to Seattle. He’s played there twice already.

GanoushMoose
5 years 3 months ago

This is what i was thinking before i came to the comments, but that no-trade is gonna hurt

souldrummer
5 years 3 months ago

But Raul Ibanez is becoming Raul Mondesi so how can he be the answer? He’s not giving enough offense to the Phillies.

withpower
5 years 3 months ago

The other teams in this division need to get it together and start winning ball games.

I think the pitching and defense aspect of baseball is terrific and the best route to build your team, but with a pop gun offense like that, Texas and Anaheim need to make Seattle pay.

The fact that Seattle can hit that badly and not be in early trouble in the standings is going to be a missed opportunity later in the season if the Mariners hang around and get some hitters.

j6takish
5 years 3 months ago

Yeah, I had high hopes for Texas, but their pitching this year is painful to watch, even by the Rangers standards

5 years 3 months ago

Colby Lewis is looking good.

ElasticSyntax
5 years 3 months ago

What about just moving Kotchman and Bradley up in the order?

bjsguess
5 years 3 months ago

If you are going to make a change here is what you do:

1. Release Sweeney.
2. Move Bradley to DH.
3. Give Griffey a start once a week at most.
4. Bring in a solid OF’er to replace Bradley through trade. Take on cash without having to give up talent. Ibanez is a great call.

If you only bring in a DH you will now have 4 guys who should be DH’ing. Leaving Bradley in the field is only asking for an injury.

On a side note – doubt that the AL West is the most winnable division in baseball. All of the teams could and should play better than 500 baseball.

jdb3
5 years 3 months ago

How about Griffey retires? We love you to death but take a cue from Walter Jones, listen to his speech. Ibanez couldn’t wait to leave, remember?

Vmmercan
5 years 3 months ago

So at what point in the season is it appropriate to realize “extreme run prevention” is a nice idea but not a replacement for “balance”?

thebrettparker
5 years 3 months ago

Jose Guillen is available

ugen64
5 years 3 months ago

Scott’s in a major slump right now, which probably just means he’ll go on a long hot streak in like mid-May… just in time for the deadline! Assuming Riemold improves, and Pie is good after his injury, I think he’s a good candidate to be traded. We could use a SS prospect, of which the Mariners have quite a few in their minors… he’s not exactly being paid a ton of money either.

CrustyJuggler
5 years 3 months ago

All I know is they need to boot Tui to AAA. The guy is not ready for ML pitching and can’t play SS to save his life. Hannahan or Vasquez need to replace him on the roster..yesterday.

rockiesmagicnumber
5 years 3 months ago

We have this Brad Hawpe

omavricko
5 years 3 months ago

Mariners have the best plan set up right now. Cliff Lee could change the future of the Mariners. Option A trade Cliff Lee before deadline. We could do that and probably receive a better package then what we traded to get him. Option B Try to resign him. Give him the bank. We already have Felix locked up, lets lock up Lee for 4+ years. Option C is just keep Lee for the year, He’ll more than likely be a type A free agent and then who ever signs him gives us there first round pick. Only thing bad about that is, lets say the Yankees sign him, they’ll probably make the playoffs and have a low draft pick. But if the Nationals were to unload some money for a Ace, not like Lee would go there anyways, We could get a high pick.

5 years 3 months ago

I think there is a pretty good answer to their problem: Jack Cust. He was wrongly cast aside by the A’s, who themselves are struggling with offense. Despite the fact that the A’s can’t hit to save their lives, Cust is raking in Triple-A: .420 OB, 4 HR, 12 RBI, and 11 R in 88 PA’s. I’m sure Beane just wants money for him, so the Mariners shouldn’t have much of a problem obtaining him. Do it, Mariners!

ZoinksScoob91
5 years 3 months ago

BJSGuess is on the right track. If the M’s want to contend this season, they’ll have to push Griffey to the bench, Bradley to DH and bring in a LF to balance out the offense. And I’m not talking about an internal replacement; neither Michael Saunders nor Greg Halman is the answer. I see 3 possible candidates:

1) Brad Hawpe: the Rockies are flush with outfielders, and can slide Seth Smith into full-time duty in RF if they get rid of Hawpe. I believe that Hawpe is a free agent at the end of the season, and the Rockies could definitely use Hawpe as a trade chip now. He’s left-handed, which would play well at Safeco Field, and he’s a decent defender (not spectacular, but good enough to play LF.) He was mashing the ball before his quad injury. The catch, of course, is that the M’s don’t want to mortgage the farm for what could be a 4.5 month rental. This doesn’t have to be a “dump” deal, per se, as the M’s are loaded with right-handed power-throwing relievers; Mark Lowe or Brandon League could help the Rockies now.

2) Cody Ross: the Marlins may not be in the race much longer, and Fredi Gonzalez could pay the price for that (although being the lead candidate to replace Bobby Cox in Atlanta isn’t exactly a consolation prize.) If so, they may look to move some contracts, including Jorge Cantu, but Ross could also be part of a purge. He’ll be arbitration-eligible, and probably in for a decent range. He’s always hit for power, and he’s probably the best overall defender of the 3 candidates I’m discussing here. However, he’s right-handed and he usually doesn’t hit for a high average or get on base at a particuarly good clip, two traits the M’s really covet right now.

3) Rick Ankiel: the Royals would surely love to move his contract, especially with an option for 2011 looming. They can’t trade him until June 15 without his permission, since he just signed as a free agent this winter. But he definitely has the best power potential of the 3 candidates, and he’s a lefty. However, a laundry list of injuries probably make him the worst defender of the bunch. Of course, he could also be an emergency reliever if needed…

I don’t think the M’s will go after Jack Cust; the last thing they need is a strikeout machine. Same with Luke Scott. Cantu could be interesting, but I think the M’s would prefer a lefty power bat.

If, however, they inexplicably feel comfortable with Bradley’s defense in LF (I assure you that no Mariners fan is), they could look for a replacement at DH, and then Jermaine Dye and Adam Dunn come into the picture. Dye’s been looking for a job, and definitely offers some serious power potential. Of course, he hasn’t played since the end of the 2009 season, and his second half stats were horrible: .179 BA, 7 HR and 26 RBI after the All-Star break. As for Dunn, he’d fit in perfectly in the M’s lineup in the cleanup spot; he’s ballpark proof and offers the M’s the kind of power threat they haven’t had since the first 2 years of Richie Sexson’s tenure in Seattle (the first 2 years, he was exactly what everyone expected; those last 2 seasons, though…) Unfortunately, the Nats love Dunn a lot and would actually like to keep him around. They’ll only trade him if they feel he won’t sign an extension… and by that time, the M’s may be buried anyway.

Just my 2 cents.

CrustyJuggler
5 years 3 months ago

I disagree with that getting Bradley was a dumb idea. He hasn’t set the world on fire as of yet for sure but Silva is getting very similar money and was a non-factor on this team. He is doing very well for Chicago right now and I don’t think anyone could have foreseen that. His time in Seattle had him looking like a guy who didn’t belong in the bigs. Period.

Bradley is coming around with the bat and I stand by it being a good move to trade a completely worthless piece (Silva) for a potentially good offensive bat (Bradley) when all things are equal.