Some news from around the AL West, as the division heads into the All-Star break with four teams over the .500 mark…
- There was some buzz last month about the Mariners discussing a trade for Cole Hamels, though the Seattle Times’ Ryan Divish hears that the Mariners’ “interest was greatly overplayed.” Whatever talks the M’s and Rangers had about Hamels could have been simply due diligence on the part of Seattle GM Jerry Dipoto, who “checks in on every player and will never toss away any proposal immediately.”
- The Mariners’ general need for pitching is further explored by Divish as part of his mailbag piece, as he isn’t sure Seattle will necessarily target a starter. For one, a clear top-of-the-rotation arm may not be available. The team’s search for such a pitcher is further complicated by the fact that some members of Mariners ownership and the upper-level management team aren’t keen on acquiring players who are only under contract for the rest of this season (i.e. Hamels or J.A. Happ, another pitcher linked to Seattle on the rumor mill.) It should be noted that Hamels is technically under control for 2019 via a club option, though at a steep cost of $20MM. As for a more controllable arm on a frequent Mariners trade partner, Divish doesn’t believe the M’s have the prospect depth to obtain Chris Archer from the Rays.
- The Angels have been getting calls about such relievers as Blake Parker, Cam Bedrosian, and Justin Anderson, Ken Rosenthal reports in a video update for FOXSports.com. All three right-handers have pitched well this season, with Parker stepping up as Anaheim’s first choice at closer in the wake of Keynan Middleton’s Tommy John surgery. Rosenthal suggests the Angels will be open to selling high on these arms due to the “volatile” nature of relief pitchers on a year-to-year basis, though obviously L.A. would want a decent return since all three come with multiple years of control.
- With the Athletics positioned to make additions at the trade deadline, the San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser figures the team will look to add pitching in some form. Though the rotation is Oakland’s biggest need, Slusser suggests the A’s could “get creative” by bolstering its already-solid relief corps, which would allow the starters to make shorter outings before turning things over to the bullpen. If the A’s do pursue a starter, it will be a mid-tier arm rather than a frontline ace — Slusser suggests the Twins’ Jake Odorizzi or Lance Lynn as the types of starters Oakland would look at obtaining, though there isn’t any indication that the A’s have specific interest in either of those Minnesota pitchers.