The Giants and Mariners have agreed to a trade that will send infielder Alex Blandino and cash considerations to the M’s, according to Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times (Twitter link). San Francisco will acquire outfielder Stuart Fairchild, who was designated for assignment yesterday.
Fairchild is joining his third different organization in less than a month, as the Mariners obtained him from the Diamondbacks back on April 23. A Seattle native, Fairchild’s brief tenure with his hometown team did see him play in three games and receive three plate appearances as a late-game sub. This makes it 15 MLB appearances for Fairchild over the last two seasons, after he made his big league debut with the D’Backs in 2021.
The Reds took Fairchild in the second round in the 2017 draft, and has posted some good numbers in the minors, including a .282/.382/.536 slash line over 246 PA at the Triple-A level. As a right-handed hitting outfielder who can play all three outfield spots, Fairchild represents an interesting depth option for the Giants, who are forever looking for more pieces to mix and match. Since the Giants’ first-choice outfield group of Mike Yastrzemski, LaMonte Wade Jr., Joc Pederson, and Luis Gonzalez are all left-handed hitters, Fairchild joins Austin Slater and Darin Ruf as the top complements from the right side.
It could be argued that Seattle had a similar need for outfield depth with Mitch Haniger on the injured list and Jarred Kelenic optioned to Triple-A, but the M’s clearly felt Fairchild was an expendable part. Instead, the Mariners will now add to their infield depth chart with Blandino, a veteran of 135 games with the Reds over parts of the last three seasons. Blandino was another high draft pick for Cincinnati, selected with the 29th overall pick of the 2014 draft.
Blandino has hit only .226/.339/.291 over his 279 PA in the majors, but brings plenty of versatility. The 29-year-old has lined up at all four infield positions, and played a handful of games as a corner outfielder at the MLB level (plus five mop-up appearances as a pitcher). Abraham Toro and Dylan Moore are currently acting in similar super-utility capacities on the Mariners’ active roster, so Blandino provides some extra cover in the event of an injury.
Blandino was born in Palo Alto, California and played college ball at Stanford, so the trade represents a rather unusual case of two teams swapping local products. Then again, the frequency of trades between the Giants and Mariners is an oddity unto itself — this is the fourth deal between the two clubs in less than a month.