Mariners Seek Controllable Hitters

2:35pm: The Mariners are trying hard to obtain Brandon Belt, Dave Cameron of FanGraphs reports (on Twitter).

1:32pm: Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik is looking to acquire hitters who could contribute for the next two or three seasons, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports reports. The Mariners aim to improve an offense that currently ranks last in the American League with just 3.9 runs per game. 

The Mariners are more focused on players such as Josh Willingham and Allen Craig than players like Shin-Soo Choo and Hunter Pence. Choo and Pence are eligible for free agency after the 2013 season, while Willingham is under contract through 2014 and Craig won't even be arbitration eligible before the 2013-14 offseason.

118 Responses to Mariners Seek Controllable Hitters Leave a Reply

  1. ZoinksScoob 3 years ago

    No way the M’s get Craig. Berkman is a free agent at the end of the year, and the Cards will have a place to slot Craig as the full-time 1B in 2013. Willingham is a possibility, but it seems that right-handers have an easier time hitting HR’s in Minnesota than lefties (Morneau and Mauer can attest to that), and Safeco Field is where right-handed power hitters come to die. So if I’m Jack Z, I don’t send one of the M’s top 4 pitching prospects (Hultzen, Walker, Paxton, Ramirez) to Minnesota as part of a package for Willingham. Beavan maybe, and some other fringe material.

    • frozeninbemidji 3 years ago

      You can try but you’re not getting him for that.

  2. Coper Nickle 3 years ago

    I know people like to bash our offense but i like it we just need a veteran presence we don’t have one.

    • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

      step one was getting rid of that rookie ichiro. now you guys can find someone who has actually been around for awhile and accomplished a thing or two

    • The kids we have just need to mature a while longer, I think the talent is there, just not showing itself now. Montero seems like he is catching up (no pun intended) to the big league level of pitching, and I don’t expect Ackley to be this bad next year. He will make the adjustments.

    • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

      How does a veteran presence help a team with a collective .653 OPS? Can you imagine how much worse it would be if they were in the NL?

      By veteran presence maybe you mean any free agent over 25 and an OPS over .800?

  3. sportsnut969 3 years ago

    Mariners do not have the quality prospects to net anyone of quality.

    Maybe the indians would trade Matt LaPorta for Justin Smoak giving both stiffs and change of location in a Garbage for Garbage deal.

    • We do have quality prospects, but those types of blue chip guys aren’t getting traded for Allen Craig. More like a Justin Upton type. And, believe me when I say this, we will never deal those prospects, that doesn’t seem to be GMZ’s MO

      • mwagner26 3 years ago

        I do not even want to think about getting Justin Upton. I don’t really want to trade pitchers for a guy who I’m still not sure about. I just don’t know if he’s the kind of hitter we need.

      • johnydrum2 3 years ago

        The Cardinals wouldn’t trade a guy who is under team control and is a .300 plus batter and has 30-40 HR power (Allen Craig) for unproven prospects. The Cardinals have plenty of top 100 prospects too. The Mariners would pounce on the chance to get Allen Craig for a couple of prospects.

    • PennMariner 3 years ago

      “The Mariners do not have the quality prospects to net anyone of quality.”

      Ha…ha…wait, are you being serious?

    • Haywood1 3 years ago

      You call the Card’s GM and offer up Hultzen, Walker, and Paxton for Craig, and I bet he pulls the trigger.

      • asovermann 3 years ago

        Except they’d never offer that for an injury prone player whos career high in games played is 75.

    • Bob9988 3 years ago

      Your funny. Seattle has a top ten farm and has like 5 top100 players in it. Stop listening to the east coast bias media.

  4. tomymogo 3 years ago

    I would trade King Felix.

    • We aren’t trading Felix. No matter what.

      • sam_lammert 3 years ago

        not ever for craig miller martinez and taveras? i feel like the mariners would do that

        • Cards would not do that. They would offer Craig, Miller and other lower level prospects not named Taveras, Rosenthal, Martinez or Wong. They would also need Adams if Craig is traded

        • California_RedBirds 3 years ago

          Yea why not trade the whole farm system for one pitcher. No thanks!

          • sam_lammert 3 years ago

            i said the mariners would, not that the cardinals would

        • PennMariner 3 years ago

          As a Mariners fan, I am in the staunch anti-Felix trade boat. However, if I was Jack Z and the Cardinals maniacally offered that package, how on earth do I say no?

          • sam_lammert 3 years ago

            exactly, just saying if someone offered a package like that, felix would be gone

        • mwagner26 3 years ago

          If I’m Jack Z., I’ve already hung up the phone.

  5. This either re-affirms that the M’s know they’ll suck for at least the next two years, or that they want to lower our payroll for the next 2-4 years…either way, I am disappointed. Really, the lack of development of Smoak is what is getting me.

  6. Haywood1 3 years ago

    Only way M’s are getting Allen Craig is if it’s part of a package for King Felix, or if the M’s are offering up 2 of their top pitching prospects. I could see the Cards doing like Craig, Cox, and Jenkins for King Felix, but highly unlikely. Cards are already pretty stacked with high-end pitching prospects, so it would have to be a real blowout of a deal for them to want more pitching prospects for Craig.

    • mwagner26 3 years ago

      If I was going to trade Felix Hernandez, I’d have to get a better haul than that.

    • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

      Wow…just these words here…”
      Only way M’s are getting Allen Craig is if it’s part of a package for King Felix”…just wow.

      • Well there would obviously need to be a lot more. But he’s right. The Mariners don’t have anything we need that we would trade Craig for except Felix. Which ain’t happening…

  7. Michael Grabowski 3 years ago

    Good luck on getting Craig without trading Hernandez.

    • Bob9988 3 years ago

      If you think Hernandez and Craig are to ever be mentioned in the same breath, then you are more of a homer than we are.

      • sam_lammert 3 years ago

        he isnt saying craig is on his level, he is saying that the cardinals just aren’t gonna let craig go for anything less than a blowout deal, hes very important to the team

        • YanksFanSince78 3 years ago

          I REALLY think the wording should be “The M’S are not letting Felix go unless it’ a blowout deal”.

          Just the thought of St. Louis saying “we’re not trading Craig unless Felix is part of the deal” just sounds insane.

          • johnydrum2 3 years ago

            Trading anybody else for a guy who will hit over .300 with 30-40 HRs in a full season and is under team control sounds insane. They’re saying that Felix Hernandez is the only player from the M’s that would get their attention. The $20 million increase in payroll and the fact that the Cardinals have solid starting pitching paired with the loss of a cheap middle or the lineup masher (and a prospect or two) would make a deal involving a great pitcher like Felix Hernandez not as attractive.

  8. Rbraz 3 years ago

    Walker, Capps Ruffin for Willingham

  9. Brandon 3 years ago

    Theres no way the cardinals will get rid of Craig

  10. Coper Nickle 3 years ago

    We need to have like an automated message that says Felix is untouchable lol.

  11. Willingham for Carlos Triunfel, Brandon Maurer(so commentators can say Maurer delivers to Mauer), and two others should get the job done right?

    • Rbraz 3 years ago

      NO WAY the twins take that deal they would need either Walker, Hultzen or Paxton

      • Twins could definitely use Triunfel though, even though they just got Escobar. It makes me shiver though another non-hitting shortstop in Escobar.. Triunfel can still hit ,but i guess i’m wrong in thinking he could headline the deal. Paxton is probably the only guy they would fleece. Paxton, Triunfel, Maurer, and a lower minors guy makes sense. Pretty good value for Willingham.

    • Jeremy Johnson 3 years ago

      Five players for an average hitter. Yeah no thanks.

  12. mwagner26 3 years ago

    What really makes me wonder about this team and the Safeco situation is that we’re the #1 run scoring team ON THE ROAD. 258 runs on the road, with only 147 at home. Either something needs to be done about Safeco (i.e. entertaining the idea of bringing in the fences) or this team is really that bad offensively at home. Pitchers have only given up 162* runs at home. Maybe Chambliss is not the answer. Perhaps we need a much better hitting coach. Maybe someone who has actually played at Safeco Field.

  13. California_RedBirds 3 years ago

    Haha good luck Seattle in prying Craig away from the Cards

    • Tyrell Osborne 3 years ago

      Thats like saying Pujols was gonna gonna stay, you can be suprised sometimes..

  14. GreatChicagoFire..Sale 3 years ago

    How about Soriano??

    • mwagner26 3 years ago

      Soriano for Figgins with Cubs chipping in a decent amount of money.

      • asovermann 3 years ago

        Why would the Cubs take in the 9 mil that Figgins is owed and also pay most of the 18 that Soriano is owed per year?

        • mwagner26 3 years ago

          Exactly my point. Sarcasm. No one even wants Soriano, even with the way he’s playing and with the Cubs willing to eat a chunk of money.

          • asovermann 3 years ago

            I’m not sure why I team in need of offense wouldn’t want him though, he’s actually been quite good in the OF this year and has been solid with the stick. If Chicago is going to pickup almost all of his contract why not trade for the guy?

  15. asovermann 3 years ago

    An injury prone 28 year old in Craig probably wouldn’t net nearly enough for Cardinals fans to be happy anyway, so I doubt he’d be dealt.

  16. TheoHoyer 3 years ago

    They should go after Soriano, if he would accept a trade there.

  17. baseballbill77 3 years ago

    Why didn’t they just sign Willingham as a free agent in the offseason?

    • mwagner26 3 years ago

      I don’t really see them going for Willingham. That’s more of what Ben is suggesting.

  18. daniel murphy perhaps?

  19. Brandon Belt? Trade to get a player who doesn’t hit any better than what we got lol atta boy Z.

  20. Coper Nickle 3 years ago

    No Z isn’t trying to trade League for Belt i don’t think Z is that stupid Sabean would laugh and hang up probably trying to package something.

  21. California_RedBirds 3 years ago

    Brandon Belt? Would he even be an upgrade over what they have right now? Only the Mariners…

    • asovermann 3 years ago

      They’ve been playing Smoak and Carp at 1st so actually yes haha

  22. Trent Norton 3 years ago

    Why are people acting like Brandon Belt would be a bad acquisition? Obviously Brandon League would be part of the package, M’s fans don’t care about that, he won’t get too much anyhow.

    Then throw in a mid level prospect and one of the AAAA outfielders we seem to have accrued and perhaps a deal falls through…I just don’t see the angst. Belt is 24, assuming what he has done is it is really unfortunate.

    The M’s just need to keep adding young bats. Keep adding young bats. Keep adding young bats.

    Eventually they start to turn out.

    • letsgogiants 3 years ago

      We are not trading Belt for League, even if you guys include a prospect. He is our first baseman of the future despite being so-so since being called up and a relief pitcher won’t do it.

  23. Tony Matias 3 years ago

    M’s want controllable players because they are gearing up to sell the team and do not want any high dollar contracts (excluding Felix possibly).

  24. Dogham 3 years ago

    The Ballpark excuse is getting old. The M’s don’t have any consistant hitting. Everyone is under .270. The M’s have hit more HR’s than last, but most games it is 1, 2 , 3 hits and a loss. Power will develop, but the M’s need a couple guys who will develop into hitters that can be .290 to .320 or better every year. The wins will come once the base hits arrive consistently. I’m not sure Brandon Belt will be one of those guys.

    • harmony55 3 years ago

      Place baseball’s best hitting prospects* — Jesus Montero, Justin Smoak, Dustin Ackley and Michael Saunders — at Safeco Field and they struggle. On the road, the young Mariners lead the majors in runs scored.

      Playing in the current configuration of Safeco Field, it’s hard to come up with “a couple a guys who will develop into hitters that can be .290 to .320 or better every year.”

      The Mariners, with a current Pythagorean record of 51-52, could become contenders when their elite prospects arrive in 2013-14.

      * Baseball America’s midseason prospect lists had Justin Smoak at No. 4 in 2009, Dustin Ackley at No. 7 in 2010, Michael Saunders at No. 25 in 2009 and Jesus Montero at No. 3 in 2009, No. 4 in 2010 and No. 7 in 2011.

  25. Kendall Adkins 3 years ago

    Allen Craig is going to be a superstar. There isn’t a relief pitcher in the game worth his future production.

  26. ugotrpk3113 3 years ago

    Belt for League would be excellent for Seattle and par for the course for the Giants.

    • gmenfan 3 years ago

      In all likelihood, Belt is overrated but that would be a steal for the M’s. Given that the Giants have nobody at first and Sandoval on the DL, I don’t see how Belt can be sacrificed right now unless they have a deal for a corner infielder in the works as well.

  27. Step one is to remodel Safeco, that place is a freaking blackhole for any hitter, just give up, bring in the fence and make it a neutral field.

  28. gmenfan 3 years ago

    If the deal is League for Belt, Sabean better include himself in the deal because he’ll be run out of town otherwise.

  29. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    How about Peter Bourjos. He is young, fast, and can defend. With the emergence of Mike Trout, the Angels don’t have a need for Bourjos any more.

    • 123Redsox 3 years ago

      Plus he is young and will develop power over time. He is just what they could use.

  30. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    Carlos Quentin is another option who can play the outfield and 1st base. He is signed through the 2015 season and has an option for 2016.

  31. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    Quentin is due :

    Year Age Team salary
    2012 29 San Diego Padres$7,025,000

    2013 30 San Diego Padres$9,500,000

    2014 31 San Diego Padres$9,500,000

    2015 32 San Diego Padres$8,000,000

    2016 33 San Diego Padres*$10,000,000$10M Mutual Option, $3M Buyout$3M buyout with 320 games played in 2013-15

    Earliest Free Agent: 2016

  32. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    Alfonso Soriano is under team control through 2014 and the cubs are looking to trade him. He is versatile playing: 852 games in Left Field, 766games at second base, 12 games in center field, 11 games at third base, and 10 games at shortstop. He could also be a DH possiblilty,

  33. The Cards will Not trade Dempster

    • WeDontNeedToFinPracticeRANDY 3 years ago

      That statement is so wrong, but so right at the same time.

  34. The Cards won’t trade craig or Adams, they’re both too good of hitters

  35. GoSox2012 3 years ago

    Felix Hernandez, Brendan Ryan and Brandon League to White Sox for Dayan Viciedo, Adisson Reed, Nate Jones, Nestor Molina, Simon Castro and Tyler Salandino.

    • 123Redsox 3 years ago

      The whitesox would be giving up too much. Take out Molina and Castro and add a PTBNL and its more realistic.

  36. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    Carlos Quentin is another option who can play the outfield and 1st base.
    He is signed through the 2015 season and has an option for 2016.

  37. It would have to be a fringey-star level player to lead the team, and it’s not like those are growing on trees.

  38. sportsnut969 3 years ago

    Firing Eric Wedge would go along way to getting this team on the right track.

  39. mwagner26 3 years ago

    I honestly don’t know what to make of Wedge. I don’t know if he’s all there, or maybe I’m just mad that most of the young players we have (Smoak, Ackley, Carp, etc.) are sucking really bad.

  40. sam_lammert 3 years ago

    haha the cardinals would block their number if they ever included two of those prospects in a deal

  41. mwagner26 3 years ago

    Holy Spam, Batman.

  42. Coper Nickle 3 years ago

    Ahem if you actually did your research you would realize that opposing teams don’t hit very well in Safeco either Mr. Spam.

  43. mwagner26 3 years ago

    Our staff has maintained a 3.02 ERA at Safeco, while they’ve pitched to a 4.51 ERA away. Offense cannot be blamed alone for the way we’ve been playing. We’re “crushing” the ball (61 HR [5th]; 97 2B[T-8th]; 15 3B [T-1st]; 496 hits [1st], and all together, a .255 AVG [9th]).

    This is clearly a club that is proving it can in fact, hit major league pitching while away from their horribly spacious home ball park. This club HAS improved from a dreadful 2011 campaign. We’ve already hit more home runs on the road than we did in all of 2011. In fact, we’re better in most categories on the road in 2012 already. Yes, we’ve only got two more months to play, but my point is that something needs to be done about Safeco Field, if this team is going to actually win and get fans to show up again.

  44. sam_lammert 3 years ago

    I was just proving him wrong, he said no matter what but there still is a way, not a realistic one, but still a way

  45. Robb Logan 3 years ago

    Craig has also shown to be far more injury prone than Upton. It would be a risky deal seeing Craig’s injury history for the M’s.

  46. asovermann 3 years ago

    Upton is also just 24 and still improving while Craig is 28 and should be in his prime.

  47. Broke his kneecap last year while trying to make diving catch, but still managed to play lights out in the post season last year. He had no prior injury history in the majors or minors

  48. asovermann 3 years ago

    Hes been on the dl at least twice this season with knee troubles and wrist injuries, I doubt thats something teams are looking for. There might be interest but he wouldnt net the top prospects Cards fans would be expecting.

  49. mwagner26 3 years ago

    They’re getting there though.

  50. asovermann 3 years ago

    Hes been on the DL, what 3 times this year for multiple knee and wrist issues?

  51. Robb Logan 3 years ago

    Well dont forget the 15 day for his hammy. Also a sore quad. Last season a groin injury landed him on the 15 day DL 2010 another quad injury. He has a past history of this stuff and missed games. Many players have this I know but for him it is a recurring theme more than most season in and season out dating back to his prospect days.

  52. mwagner26 3 years ago

    I tell you what. If you can propose a realistic scenario in which the Mariners get an awesome haul (a trade that addresses various needs the club has), I’d really like to hear it.

  53. mwagner26 3 years ago

    Actually, a simple misunderstanding. I think I was looking at the wrong year. They’ve only allowed 162 runs (according to

  54. Upton is not improving and getting more expensive

  55. asovermann 3 years ago

    06- tore pateller tendon in knee
    07- significant rib injury
    08- low back injury
    Last April to the DL with a groin strain
    The knee injury
    Hammy injury
    Dodged a bullet with his only slightly sprained wrist

    These are just the major injuries, but 6+ DL stints in 7 career years doesn’t exactly scream durability.

  56. asovermann 3 years ago

    Catricala, Francisco Martinez, Phillips Castillo, Guillermo Pimentel all have significant upside

  57. Off the top of my head, Brad Miller, Stefen Romero, Julio Morban, Jack Marder, and Mike Zunino.

  58. asovermann 3 years ago

    Including his minor league career he has been on the DL 7 times I believe, dating back to 2006

  59. mwagner26 3 years ago

    See, if I was the GM of the Mariners, you’re going to have to give me more than Profar (we have Nick Franklin for SS), Olt (Who I like), and Ross. If I’m trading my ace, I’m going to have to get a pitcher in return (someone who has proven himself in the minors and who is as major league ready as ever), not to mention multiple other pieces.

  60. “Adams, Miller and Taveras” Are you serious? No way, Cardinals would laugh and hang up.

  61. mwagner26 3 years ago

    Valid point. I believe that SOMETHING needs to be done. Just look at the first post above. How can you put this on a personnel problem when they’re raking away from Safeco?

  62. asovermann 3 years ago

    Refer to my early post back to you, he’s been on the dl 7 plus times dating back to 2006 in the minors

  63. Red Sox give: Daniel Bard, Felix Doubront, Ryan Lavarnway, Ryan Kalish, Lars Anderson, Xander Bogaerts, Henry Owens
    Mariners give: King Felix + Chone Figgins and his awful contract, PTBNL

  64. Dogham 3 years ago


    Jack Z

  65. That’s not awesome, thats just a lot of pieces

  66. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    its one of the most unrealistic fantasys i have ever heard

  67. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    Every single one of our real prospects except of Iglesias, Raunardo and Middlebrooks for one pitcher and an aging utility man who stinks and has a contract the size of kingdom come.

  68. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    Peter bourjos would be one of my main priorities. if i was the GM or Owner of the mariners. He is fast and can lead off. plus he is young.

  69. asovermann 3 years ago

    He’s not Tulo injury prone, but 6 or more DL stints in 7 career years doesn’t scream rely on me to be here for a full season. Off the top of my head I honestly can’t name many players that hit the DL year in and year out because there aren’t very many of them. And yeah, could’ve happened to anyone, but it still happened to him so I’m not sure why teams would just throw it out the window when looking at him.

  70. $18224393 3 years ago

    The problem is that Safeco is so extreme that it’s making talent evaluation difficult, confusing people into thinking that the Mariners’ offense is bad and the pitching is good when actually it’s the other way around and the numbers are skewed by their insanely pitcher-friendly home stadium. Safeco has transformed every offense that has walked into it this year into a deadball era offense. This gives the impression that players like Seager and Montero are mediocre or poor when in reality Albert Freakin’ Pujols would be putting up bad numbers too.

  71. actually ichiro can speak english but he chooses to use a translator.

  72. Anderson and Kalish have little to no future on the varsity squad, and who knows if Bard will ever get back to his old form. Lavarnway is a bit blocked with Salty playing well, and Swihart projects as a much better prospect. At least you agree that the package I suggested would be too much, if anything, because these other people commenting obviously have no clue. Mariners would have a really hard time getting two prospects like Owens and Bogaerts for King Felix. Take Figgins out of the deal and maybe it’s not so bad. You’re also forgetting about Barnes, Bradley, and Swihart… probably our 3 best prospects. Ranaudo stinks. If we can get anything for him of value Ben should do it now.

  73. Not awesome? Owens is leading the minor leagues in K/9… and is 19 years old. Bogaerts is 4th in the Carolina League in HRs and is also 19 years old. Doubront projects as a future #2 starter, and is much better than that bum Noesi the M’s just traded for. Anderson, Kalish, and Lavarnway would all bat in the top 6 in the M’s lineup RIGHT NOW, and Bard is a guy who has been an elite reliever for much of his career. So tell me, what’s not awesome about that package? If this deal were to happen, Red Sox nation would be upset. See comments below.

  74. Annnnd that’s why the Mariners are the Mariners. Let’s hold on to our ace pitcher and pay him 20+ mil per so that we can fill up half of our stadium every 5th game!

  75. The history of the game is littered with more prospects that DON’T make it opposed to those that do. Offering a lot of quantity does not equal quantity, quite the opposite. For every successful prospect-laden trade like Texiera there are many more unsuccessful prospect-laden trades like Cliff Lee or Vida Blue. For example, Lars Anderson is becoming a 4-A player already. Bard is a solid reliever — a RELIEVER not even a starter. Relievers are a dime/dozen, just ask the Red Sox front office because they tried to convert him to a starter & failed. So when we cut back the fat, all thats being offered are a lot of pieces for arguably the best starting pitcher in baseball. The Mariners are not going to trade a 26 year old power pitcher with a CY Young & no signs of slowing down for a burnt-out-starter-turned-reliever & a 19 yr old who is 4th in the CarLeague in home runs among others. They need more of a sure bet.

  76. 123Redsox 3 years ago

    hes young and kalish will get the chance and so will lavarnway. But you are right on Anderson. He only has a chance to try to make it as a Shelley Duncan type of player.

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