2012 Contract Issues: Seattle Mariners

The Mariners are next in our 2012 Contract Issues series.  Here's what the team faces after the 2011 season:

Eligible For Free Agency (7)

  • Relievers Chris Ray and Jamey Wright will be eligible for free agency after the season, though at the rate he's been going Ray might not get to six years service time.  Wright has been effective as a setup man in a very small sample this year, and if his success continues perhaps the team will re-sign him affordably.
  • Well-paid veterans Milton Bradley and Jack Wilson don't figure to be back in 2012.  They also seem like long shots to accumulate trade value.
  • Erik Bedard is at least healthy and striking people out at the moment, but he's been knocked around badly.  If he shows signs of his former self and remains healthy into July, he'll probably be traded.
  • Adam Kennedy and Ryan Langerhans will also be eligible for free agency.

Contract Options: None

Arbitration Eligible (7)

Standard disclaimer: not all of these players will rack up the necessary service time or make it to the point of being tendered contracts.  Vargas and League could jump past $4MM, while Aardsma should pass $6MM.  Cust seems in line for his annual non-tender.  The pitchers in this group would make for decent trade bait, but if the Mariners have an eye on contending in 2012 they might prefer to keep a few around.  Assuming the key arbitration eligibles stay I'll peg the group for around $15MM.

2012 Payroll Obligation

The Mariners' 2012 payroll obligation, according to Cot's, is $59.513MM.  If the major arbitration eligibles are retained the team could be around $75MM, roughly $20MM short of their '11 payroll.  The club's payroll situation is tough to project, though, because we don't know who will be traded or whether they're planning a serious contention push for '12.

Leave a Reply

6 Comments on "2012 Contract Issues: Seattle Mariners"

4 years 4 months ago

Is Bradley or Wilson Type B guys?

4 years 4 months ago

Too early to call it, with almost half of the data for that not yet in the books. I think Eddie will start projecting Elias in May. The Mariners could sneak draft picks out of these two if they are Bs and willing to do handshake deals to decline.

4 years 4 months ago

I sympathize for Cust. Quite the interesting career – mash a lot of HRs, get non-tendered, sign with a new team, repeat.

4 years 4 months ago

Wow, with such huge contracts how on earth will they be able to afford Felix? They should shed payroll and just trade him.

4 years 4 months ago

Felix is already signed long term

4 years 4 months ago

Thanks to the hip injury and not being able to move him last off-season, and the early struggles of our two young bullpen arms (Lueke being down 5-6 MPH, Cortes unable to throw strikes again), if the Mariners think they can contend in ’12, Aardsma and League will have to be back next season, which reduces payroll flexibility. Each day that passes makes not letting the As have Figgins contract look worse and worse, which also kills some flexibility next year. I could care less if Langerhans is back, but Kennedy is showing after 1 month that he can still hit a little.

That being said, the only option if the team wants to contend is to add Fielder for way too much to DH 6 days a week and maybe play 1st the other day. He’s the only power and 4 hole hitter to be added next off-season and his tools will play well in Safeco. Still going to be tough, we don’t have excess pieces to trade for upgrades and our biggest holes (C, 3B, LF, SS) don’t really have anything worthwhile available at first glance in FA. Would probably have to be another Branyan situation, and those workout that well, what, once every 20-30 of those type of signings?

Doom and Gloom til ’14 is what is on the horizon, until our infield is Smoak, Ackley, Franklin, and Rendon