Going into Major League Baseball’s non-waiver trade deadline, it was known that the Seattle Mariners were going to be sellers. Three players ended up being moved: Ichiro Suzuki, Steve Delabar, and Brandon League. Two players heavily rumored stayed put: Kevin Millwood and Jason Vargas. As the Mariners make a late push to end this season at .500, I take a look at the three deals Seattle did make.
RF Ichiro Suzuki and Cash considerations to the N.Y. Yankees for P D.J. Mitchell and P Danny Farquhar. I wrote an article after the trade which states I didn’t like this trade, and I’m definitely still not in love with it. I have to trust the front office felt that Ichiro wouldn’t be return to Seattle after the 2012 season. Despite some decline in his offensive numbers, Ichiro was still leading all Mariner regular starters in batting average when he was sent to New York. It’s better to get something than be left with nothing if Ichiro left, but it would’ve been nice to get some offensive help. With the recent pitching staff changes (League and Delabar being traded), D.J. Mitchell wasn’t even promoted to Seattle. Mitchell has been impressive in two starts with Tacoma (0-1, 0.75 ERA, 8 K in 12.0 IP), and it looks like Seattle will look at him as a starter not relief. He did struggle, though, at Scranton Wilkes-Barre for the Yankees going 6-4 with a 5.04 ERA in 14 starts.
RP Steve Delabar to the Toronto Blue Jays for OF Eric Thames. This move makes perfect sense. Seattle was rich in pitching; Toronto could afford to move a bat. Of the three trades, I like this one the best. Delabar did a solid job for the Mariners out of the pen this season, going 2-1 with a 4.17 ERA in 34 games. Thames, though, can help the Mariners’ struggling offense. With Toronto this season, Thames batted .243 with 3 HR and 11 RBI in 46 games. His bat has a lot of potential that attracted Seattle to this deal. In Triple AAA Las Vegas this season, Thames was on fire batting .352 with 7 HR and 45 RBI. The Mariners had the arms to replace Delabar; now they get another much-needed bat. Thames joined the club yesterday, but he didn’t play in Seattle’s 7-2 win over his former team, Toronto.
RP Brandon League to the Los Angeles Dodgers for OF Leon Landry and RP Logan Bawcom. This is a step down from the Delabar trade, in that there is no immediate help for Seattle. But, the Dodgers, in a dogfight with the Giants, need to win now so gave two nice prospects to Seattle. League is a free agent after the season, and, after losing his closer’s role in Seattle, he probably wasn’t coming back. He was 0-5 with a 3.69 ERA and 9 saves. Seattle got the 22-year-old Landry and 23-year-old Bawcom. Landry has put up some impressive numbers at high A ball this season, batting .328 with 26 doubles, 15 triples, 8 HR, and 51 RBI. Best case scenario, he can contribute to the Seattle OF in a couple of seasons. Bawcom has combined for 20 saves this season in between the Dodgers’ A and double AA affiliates.