Mariners Open To Dealing Lee; Looking To 2011-12

Contenders in both leagues are calling about Cliff Lee and the Mariners would deal the lefty for the right return, sources tell John Hickey of AOL FanHouse. And Hickey says there seems to be consensus that GM Jack Zduriencik will look for players who can help the M’s in 2011 or 2012. The Mariners brought Russell Branyan back over the weekend, but realistically, they are out of contention for 2010.

Mariners prospects Alex Liddi, Dustin Ackley, Carlos Triunfel and Johan Limonta are in AA, so Hickey suggests the club could look to add outfielders and pitchers to that group. About ten days ago, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported that the Mariners are looking for young hitters in possible Lee trades.

The Mariners don’t figure to start rebuilding completely, so they would presumably want players who can help them win in 2012 at the latest. Prospects like Ackley could help the team soon, and Zduriencik has core players like Felix Hernandez, Ichiro and Franklin Gutierrez under multi-year deals. The Mets, Twins, Rangers and Cardinals are among the teams who could show interest in Lee in the coming month. 


69 Responses to Mariners Open To Dealing Lee; Looking To 2011-12 Leave a Reply

  1. damnitsderek 5 years ago

    I don’t even think I’d list Limonta among our top ten prospects at AA.

    • CrustyJuggler 5 years ago

      Limonta is having a good year but isn’t a prospect really.

  2. mets2010champs 5 years ago

    sounds like jenrry mejia….

    • CrustyJuggler 5 years ago

      Just heard Mejia went down with a rotator cuff strain. He’s potentially out for “several weeks”. Close the book on him being included in a Lee trade.

      • boy9988 5 years ago

        agreed. I think that just eliminated the Mets if Ike Davis is untouchable.

      • Fernando Martinez is more likely to be traded than Mejia

        • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

          If the Mets aren’t sending the M’s either Mejia or Flores, I think it’s unlikely that a deal gets done. And with Mejia down for the count with a rotator injury, the Mets seem to be on thin ground as far as trade bait. Fernando Martinez is nothing more than filler for a deal at this point. His inability to stay healthy coupled with his decent but not amazing performances paint him as more of a mid-level throw-in for a deal, not a headliner.

        • moses0507 5 years ago

          Fmart and Mejia would be packaged together, with probably Thole.

  3. dizzle4 5 years ago

    You know who could really be a dark-horse team here – the Cincinnati Reds. At least I haven’t seen them mentioned in the discussion.

    The Mariners are said to be looking for offense, and the Reds have a blocked prospect that could provide that in 1B Yonder Alonso. Trade over Alonso and a couple of lower end prospects, and I bet the Mariners are intrigued.

    The Reds are certainly in the hunt this year, and have shown willingness to spend.

    • scatterbrian 5 years ago

      The Reds have been mentioned before. I think Alonso is too highly rated to use to get a rental player. Alonso is indeed blocked by Votto, but if the Reds decide to trade Alonso, they should shoot for someone who will be around for more than a few months.

      • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

        Alonso is a fairly worthless prospect. BP didn’t have him in their pre-season Top 100, and you’ll likely see more prospect sites follow suit next year because he just isn’t a very good player at all, especially for a first baseman. If the M’s acquire him as the centerpiece of a deal, the Reds will have completely fleeced Jack Zduriencik. And that isn’t happening.

      • aap212 5 years ago

        Alonso has a huge platoon split, injury issues, and zero defensive value. I’d rather have the two draft picks than him. Plus, the Reds HAVE to trade him at some point, so they lack a little leverage.

  4. Montero1220 5 years ago

    I still see Yanks are the darkhorse to trade for Lee even though they have “no interest” to bring him on this year. Contrary to popular and ignorant belief the Yanks have a rich farm and their rotation could use a touch up after underperformances (Burnett, Javier Vazquez). They can deal players like Brandon Laird, Eduardo Nunez, Zach McCallister, David Phelps, and still have plenty left over. I feel like the Mariners are asking for too much though. I mean they wanted Jesus Montero/Austin Romine + Eduardo Nunez! Are you kidding me! They are treating this as if they are handing Lee over for a whole season. It’s just a rental, 12 starts max! And one pitcher will not change a whole team (just ask the Phillies).If the Yanks don’t trade for Lee I feel like Jack Zduriencik is going to settle for a low ball offer as many teams aren’t willing to offer top prospects for a rental. He’s really pushing it though. He’s feeding on the desperation of some teams who need pitching badly (Twins, Mets, Dodgers). I just hope the Yanks lowball him with Laird and maybe a B pitching prospect. I don’t want Montero or Romine to go. The Twins would be extremely stupid to deal Wilson Ramos as he is descent with the bat, extremely good defender with a minors career CS% of 43% and let’s face it Joe Mauer won’t be catching 5 years from now not if they want to keep his hitting ability intact. Oh well let’s see what happens. Go Yankees! Make them an offer that’s good for us but one they can’t refuse.

    • Belandsexo 5 years ago

      None of those players are all that interesting. Why not just hang onto Lee and get the two comp picks in what is a very strong 2011 draft crop?

    • scatterbrian 5 years ago

      A darkhorse is a team that is an unknown quantity, and therefore difficult to attach odds to….which almost always rules out the Yankees in terms of acquiring premium talent. “No interest” is just a smokescreen.

    • CrustyJuggler 5 years ago

      The ONLY prospects that interest me from the Yankees is Montero and to a lesser extent, Romine. The Yanks seem to have plans for those two so there really isn’t anything for the Mariners/Yankees to talk about. No one else in their system is a good enough player to headline a Lee trade.

    • boy9988 5 years ago

      People think that just because he is a rental the M’s shouldn’t ask for much. That is not the way the trading deadline works. “He’s feeding on the desperation of some teams who need pitching badly (Twins, Mets, Dodgers).” Of course he is. He isn’t stupid. If a team wants Lee, they will have to pay for him. And if they want him badly enough, they will cave and give the M’s what they want. Everyone seems to forget the draft compensation. We dont lose everything by holding onto him. There is in fact reason to keep him around. If a team cant even offer up something worth two first round picks they why on earth would Seattle trade him to your team. Just because the M’s are out of the hunt doesn’t the (Insert team here) are entitle to him. You gonna have to pay, and more importantly, pay better than anyone else.

      “It’s just a rental, 12 starts max! And one pitcher will not change a whole team (just ask the Phillies).” Remember, Lee totally OWNED the Yankees in the World Series. The other starters for the Phillies failed them. Lee all on his own got the Phillies half way there.

    • aap212 5 years ago

      You have to give them something better than two draft picks. The Yankees really have to include Montero or Romine to do that.

    • aap212 5 years ago

      You have to give them something better than two draft picks. The Yankees really have to include Montero or Romine to do that.

  5. Belandsexo 5 years ago

    M’s need to focus on 2012.

    Next year Im pretty sure they are going to have a rotation of Felix-Bedard-Vargas-Fister-Pineda. That can actually be a good rotation and get results similar to what they had last year when they were very high in ERA and run prevention.

    The issue will still be the offense. I expect they would like to add a Ramos or somebody close to ML ready in a deal that could be a starter in 2011. I also expect they will make one signing with 5-10 million that will be available. Other than that I expect the team will look much the same.

    Probably

    Ichiro
    Figgins
    Bradley
    Branyan
    Gutierrez
    Ackley
    Jack Wilson

    The other two spots will be filled by this Lee trade and/or offseason signings.

    I expect the team will be an 80 win team next year.

    2012 is the year and that’s what the focus should be. Therefore, if somebody offers a strong package of guys who won’t be ready til 2012 the M’s still need to make that deal. Don’t get caught up on guys who are ML now or next year.

    • chaifetz10 5 years ago

      Did Jack Wilson mention something about retirement a few months ago or is my memory already going?

      • Belandsexo 5 years ago

        I hope. We could use the extra 4-5 million or w/e he is being paid. The guy just gets hurt too often. He’s not reliable.

        What we could really use in a deal is a young SS. That is why I hope LA really tries to get involved. I think I’d trade Lee straight up for Gordon.

        • Wilmer Flores? Could he be the centerpiece of a deal? Looks like that’s what the Mets have to offer with Mejia and Martinez injured, unless there is any interest in Tejada, you know he’s silky smooth. Man I hope the Mets can pull this trade off.

          • aap212 5 years ago

            Flores will absolutely not be a shortstop in the majors.

        • damnitsderek 5 years ago

          Sorry bud, but if he retires, his contract is still guaranteed. Sunk cost.

    • snow15 5 years ago

      That line up is still ohmygod awful, and you are relying on little to no regression to the mean from Vargas and Fister, a healthy Bedard, and a rookie to put everything together. Thats a lot.

      • Belandsexo 5 years ago

        Yeah it still isn’t good. That’s why I said they won’t contend next year.

        However, as I said, lets say you get a Wilson Ramos at catcher and go out and sign a DH/1B type who can actually slug. I don’t know who will be available. Did Laroche get a two year deal? Somebody like that.

        You throw out

        Ichiro
        Figgins
        Bradley
        Branyan
        Guttierrez
        Laroche
        Ramos
        Ackley
        Wilson

        Is that a great lineup? Of course not, but it’s not terrible if you guys perform to career norms. What has happend to the M’s this year is that they’ve gotten just god awful efforts from Figgins, Bradley, Kotchman, Lopez, and the DH position.

        You replace Lopez with Ackley. Kotchman with Laroche, and the DH blackhole with Branyan. You expect Figgins and Bradley to perform closer to career norms, and your offense isn’t terrible anymore.

        As for the staff. Vargas and Fister will regress some, but they are still going to benefit from the outfield defense and Safeco to the point where they will put up results in the 3.50 to 4.50 ERA range. You got Felix. Early reports on Bedard are good and when he’s 18-20 months removed from that surgery he could be okay. We have 3 months this year to see how he’s doing. Pineda looks like a stud and should be a reasonable option at the back end next year.

        I’m not worried about the M’s pitching. They posted great results last year with Felix, Washburn, Fister, Snell, Vargas, French, etc… The defense and ballpark assure good results for the most part.

        • snow15 5 years ago

          The lineup is def better, but the Mariners really don’t have very much money to spend next year unless they expand the payroll. I honestly don’t know if they will be able to afford to bring back Russell and add Laroche. Plus they had a shot at Laroche this year and didnt pursue it. And early reports have always been good on Bedard and then he gets hurt again. I also wouldnt be surprised to see him moved if he gets a few good starts in before the deadline. But I agree with you that the team would be much better. They would get much better just by plugging in Ackley for Lopez and removing Rob Johnsons suck from the team.

          • Belandsexo 5 years ago

            Yeah, Im not sure how the payroll will look, but I think they’ll have roughly 15-18 million to spend after arbitration and that stuff.

            Not sure if that’s enough to bring back Branyan, Laroche, and Bedard.

            It’s possible.

          • snow15 5 years ago

            Yeah, I think 18 would be enough to get those guys. Or they could go for guys like Hawpe to DH and Cantu to play third (Not sure if he still can) and give Ackley some more seasoning at AAA

          • snow15 5 years ago

            Yeah, I think 18 would be enough to get those guys. Or they could go for guys like Hawpe to DH and Cantu to play third (Not sure if he still can) and give Ackley some more seasoning at AAA

          • boy9988 5 years ago

            If they don’t expand the payroll, its closer to 10-13Mill.

        • Guest 5 years ago

          I think you’d need someone with more power than LaRoche. It’d never happen, but Fielder could hit there.

    • snow15 5 years ago

      That line up is still ohmygod awful, and you are relying on little to no regression to the mean from Vargas and Fister, a healthy Bedard, and a rookie to put everything together. Thats a lot.

  6. DODGERDOG_16 5 years ago

    Im kinda losing faith for the dodgers getting cliff lee

    • boy9988 5 years ago

      Sorry. I don’t think the Dodgers got the prospects to pull it off either. They got good ones, but they are probably too far away. That would mean that one of the ML guys off the roster would have to headline and I don’t think the Dodgers can afford that.

  7. boy9988 5 years ago

    From Texas:
    1B/3B Chris Davis
    SP Tanner Scheppers
    RP Beau Jones

    or

    From Cinci
    1B Yonder Alonso
    3B Juan Fransisco
    SP Homer Bailey

    • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

      Alonso is next to worthless as far as prospects go at this point. He’s not a good hitter, and as a first baseman, that makes him pretty useless. Bailey is just one step up from that level as he has shown only occasional flashes of talent amidst a web of mediocrity (or just total crappiness). As for the Texas deal, that one has a slight chance of working, although the M’s are much more likely to want Profar than the likes of Chris Davis.

      • boy9988 5 years ago

        I know Davis had a bad first half last year and to start this one, but I’ve seen him when he is good and his minor league numbers are too good to ignore. I think Texas will be the ones to land him in the end, simply because they can offer the best deal. Only the NY teams could offer better (J. Montero / I. Davis).

    • aap212 5 years ago

      I’m not an Alonso fan, and I think Bailey needs a change of scenery, but I still think that’s a terrible, terrible trade for Cinci. Trading two corner players with some upside and a starter with a lot of upside for what you hope is Russ Branyan, what you hope is a closer before his arm falls off, and Beau Jones?

    • aap212 5 years ago

      I’m not an Alonso fan, and I think Bailey needs a change of scenery, but I still think that’s a terrible, terrible trade for Cinci. Trading two corner players with some upside and a starter with a lot of upside for what you hope is Russ Branyan, what you hope is a closer before his arm falls off, and Beau Jones?

  8. baseball52 5 years ago

    I’d like to see the Twins get him with a deal built around Ramos. He’s a devastating arm that can control a playoff series. He can push them into the upper echelon.

    • Mets won the series, we got first dibs.

    • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

      I wouldn’t mind Ramos at all. If the M’s could net something like Ramos, Slowey, and Neshek, I’d be all for it. Just a thought.

  9. Bodhizefa 5 years ago

    Sorry, Re-post.

    • damnitsderek 5 years ago

      That is an absolutely foolish statement. Because Alonso has hit a wall in his first 200 PA’s as a 23 year old at AAA hardly makes him a “worthless” prospect. He will bounce back and he likely will be traded as the centerpiece to some deal this summer, albeit probably not one for Cliff Lee.

      • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

        Hit a wall in Triple-A? He’s a first baseman who can’t hit lefties and doesn’t have much power. How exactly is he going to headline a deal with those specs on his resumé?

        Again, I’ll reiterate a point I made in an above post. Alonso wasn’t even a Top 100 guy in Baseball Prospectus’ list in the pre-season. And I anticipate more publications to follow suit next year. He’s simply not a good prospect. He looks more likely to be the next James Loney (without the sterling defensive reputation) than he does the next stud first baseman. That doesn’t make him a centerpiece. That makes him a mid-level throw-in.

        • damnitsderek 5 years ago

          And as a Mariners fan, James Loney at 1B sounds like heaven. I don’t think you truly understand how atrocious our 1B situation is. Alonso may not be the second-coming of Adrian Gonzalez, but he will be a good Major League hitter and Seattle needs a bat that can produce SOMETHING from that position long-term. Casey Kotchman and Mike Carp shouldn’t even be on a 40-man roster at this point.

          And even if he doesn’t improve defensively, you’re completely overlooking the fact that we could place him at DH. Just because he’s not in BP’s top 100 doesn’t mean he’s “not a good prospect”.

          • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

            The Mariners are my favorite team, too. But that doesn’t stop me from being a little objective in whom I want to help us win our next division title. If James Loney looks good to you as our next first baseman, it’s because you’re squinting way too hard. Branyan is old but is twice the first baseman Loney is in terms of value. If he has to bridge us to our next first baseman, then so be it. But I assure you, James Loney isn’t so much an answer as he is a guy with a pretty swing who doesn’t know how to use it for crap.

      • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

        Hit a wall in Triple-A? He’s a first baseman who can’t hit lefties and doesn’t have much power. How exactly is he going to headline a deal with those specs on his resumé?

        Again, I’ll reiterate a point I made in an above post. Alonso wasn’t even a Top 100 guy in Baseball Prospectus’ list in the pre-season. And I anticipate more publications to follow suit next year. He’s simply not a good prospect. He looks more likely to be the next James Loney (without the sterling defensive reputation) than he does the next stud first baseman. That doesn’t make him a centerpiece. That makes him a mid-level throw-in.

  10. What about the Tigers. They’ve shown they are willing to take on some money if thats what the Mariners want and they can offer top notch prospects if they want that instead. Something centered around 1 of C Crosby/ J Turner + R Strieby + W Ramirez. A top notch pitching prospect a power hitting 1B and a very solid OF. Should get it done (at least its better than whats been proposed by the mets, yanks, reds or rangers so far…). Could put the Tigers over the top in the mediocre Central this year and give them a great 1/2 punch for the playoffs…
    I don’t think I would do this if I was the Tigers, just throwing it out there as a possibility.

    • boy9988 5 years ago

      I agree, looking at some of their stats, they could be very good. But all of them are in low A ball. They are just too low for the Mariners to consider right now. Seattle is looking polished ML/ML ready prospects.

    • boy9988 5 years ago

      I agree, looking at some of their stats, they could be very good. But all of them are in low A ball. They are just too low for the Mariners to consider right now. Seattle is looking polished ML/ML ready prospects.

  11. What about the Tigers. They’ve shown they are willing to take on some money if thats what the Mariners want and they can offer top notch prospects if they want that instead. Something centered around 1 of C Crosby/ J Turner + R Strieby + W Ramirez. A top notch pitching prospect a power hitting 1B and a very solid OF. Should get it done (at least its better than whats been proposed by the mets, yanks, reds or rangers so far…). Could put the Tigers over the top in the mediocre Central this year and give them a great 1/2 punch for the playoffs…
    I don’t think I would do this if I was the Tigers, just throwing it out there as a possibility.

  12. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    Wow…..Just to make a point on how people overvalue prospects and undervalue mlb players…IF a prospect matured and became the next James Looney then most mlb GMs would be very pleased at that. Most midlevel prospects don’t become career .295/.360 hitters who can hit 13 hrs/30 dbls and play decent defense. THis idea that a prospect has to be the next Albert Puljos or Tim Lincecum or else he’s a flop is mind boggling.

    • Bodhizefa 5 years ago

      Loney is one of the worst starting first basemen in baseball. That he’s even in the Top 20 in WAR this season for first basemen is more a testament to how awful this year has been for offense than anything else. He’s a career 1.4 WAR player per year, and that’s bottom of the barrel for a roster spot normally reserved for the likes of 3+ WAR players.

      Loney was a bad comp in the first place, though, because Alonso should walk more while he will probably play much worse defense. Yonder will likely also not come close to Loney’s ability to hit lefties. In other words, there’s a chance that Alonso’s UPSIDE is akin to Loney’s WAR value, and that’s a pretty scary thought if you actually want your team to win.

  13. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    Furthermore, I don’t see the M’s getting any teams #1 prospect. Rather, I see them getting a #2 or #3 along with a couple of other good/mediocre prospects.

    • Guest 5 years ago

      Agreed. Cliff Lee will be a free agent at the end of the year as well so nobody is going to give up their best prospects.

  14. Piccamo 5 years ago

    I think that ideally they would contend for more than one year.

  15. boy9988 5 years ago

    Exactly our point. That’s why we said they need to be AAA/major league ready prospects. Or at the least a can’t miss AA prospect who can rise fast.

  16. aap212 5 years ago

    So many prospects skip Triple-A now, or only make a cameo there, that I wouldn’t worry about the difference too much.

  17. snow15 5 years ago

    I think you underestimate the overall cheapness of the dodgers organization, if the m’s ate all of cliff lee’s money the dodgers might pony up gordon

  18. snow15 5 years ago

    I think you underestimate the overall cheapness of the dodgers organization, if the m’s ate all of cliff lee’s money the dodgers might pony up gordon

  19. snow15 5 years ago

    Yeah, I’m not a Dodger fan but i almost threw up when I read the story about them paying the wizard over 100k per year.

  20. snow15 5 years ago

    Yeah, I’m not a Dodger fan but i almost threw up when I read the story about them paying the wizard over 100k per year.

  21. Guest 5 years ago

    Wasn’t fond of that story.

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