Deadline Advice for Seattle from the Hardball via Hardcore Staff
By S. L. Klatt, June 19th, 2018
Seattle is sitting comfortably in position for a postseason birth and have already made a move to bolster their bullpen and outfield, swapping a pizza delivery boy and an aspiring actor for Alex Colomé and Denard Span. But questions remain regarding Félix's consistency and ability, as well as the bench. What would you do if you were in Jerry Dipoto's shoes?
I'll tell you what I would do. Immediately following a trip to a dermatologist, I would try to identify a starting pitcher and a utility infielder that I could reach the post season with. But I'll back up a bit first.
In early May, a certain young outfielder in Potomac caught my attention. His name is Juan Soto. He was young, dumb, and full of...life. Everything about his game looked advanced and I couldn't help but wonder what it would take to pry him away from Washington, going as far as to speculate over Seattle's active-roster players that were arguably expendable. It took a solid 20 minutes before conceding to the fact that it wasn't going to happen, but that inspired me to start looking at talent that *might* be acquirable and could be of help to Seattle in 2018.
Asdrúbal Cabrera and Jordy Mercer are both impending free agents that offer offense and more than passable defense. Neither should cost much to acquire and either one would give Seattle a boost off the bench. Andrew Romine may or may not clear waivers, but if he did, the infield depth would get a boost as well.
Though having pitched well in two of his last three starts, Félix may find himself pitching out of the bullpen at some point this season. They'll eventually need to add a starter regardless and, according to Jon Morosi, they are believed to be interested in a reunion with J.A. Happ. Tyson Ross might be another name on their radar and both pitchers are also impending free agents. A controllable arm would be more desirable, but the cost to acquire such a player is likely higher than what Seattle could afford in way of prospects. If by chance the Orioles were willing to part with Dylan Bundy and Seattle was insane enough to take Chris Davis with him, along with a good 70-80 million--maybe something could get done. But a rental would seem more likely. Even internal options would seem more likely, though still not likely.
Erasmo Ramírez and Hisashi Iwakuma could factor in to the decision making at some point, but for now, they have to be seen as potential bonuses, rather than as reliable options. If anything gets done, it won't likely be before the break, but Seattle's bench and rotation are without a doubt the primary areas of concern.
2018 has been an enjoyable ride thus far for Mariners fans. They're in the middle of an eastern storm, so to speak, but should keep things interesting for the duration, resulting in the team arriving in the post season via caesarean.