- 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.
If the M's ownership, or parts of it, are thinking that THIS season is no big deal in the grand scheme of things, then I'd say .... they really love their 5-year prospectus. Better than I do.... wouldn't a playoff appearance, and a drive deep into them, go a long ways towards re BRANDING this outfit?!
Funny I should have mentioned that the M's could withstand a "10 of 13 losing streak" specifically. :- ) Note that the M's can still play -1 under .500, and win 90 games. Last time a 90-game winner missed the playoffs was? Or, to put it another way, look @ the pesky rodent A's roster. Can you see them playing .500, much less winning 90?
The rotation is running on fumes as it is. A Cole Hamels or Woody Harrelson would go a long ways towards refreshing it.
But, odd that high-IQ amigos would look at this team, this season, and this 20 years and go "Ah, who cares about 2018."
Of course Divish doesn't believe the M's have the prospects to get Chris Archer. He's an objective journalist. However, if Dr. D offered you
- Ben Gamel (club controls)
- Ryon Healy or Dan Vogelbach, your pick
- Kyle Lewis
- Evan White
- Sam Carlson
- Braden Bishop
That 6-for-1 wouldn't get it done? No, then we'd switch to the 5-year prospectus on beating the M's up for overpaying.
PS don't get your underwear in an uproar. It wouldn't take anything like that 6-for-1 to grab Archer.
PPS See the Zee had the following, relatedly, up but caught in the trap:
I've played organized: baseball, football, ice hockey...intramural basketball, soccer - lots of team sports. Thought about throwing down with the rugby team in college but then my nose is too big (would have been broken for sure). Still playing hockey and getting closer to the 50-year mark on that. This isn't a scientific comment but rather a human dynamics one: Team mojo is a big deal - so big that it will make a less talented team (than its direct competition) a better team than it should be. And that's your 2018 Mariners.
Mojo comes and goes during a season, even for the teams that have it in volumes. There's no way over a 16-game, much less an 80- or 162-game season to stay on top. The Ms are proving that right now.
When I've been on teams that have the Mojo, it makes the confidence level soar. The impact can be seen most accutely on the performance of role players - they're playing above their normal talent level. When the Mojo wanes, the role players sink back into their "baseball card" level of play and that sinks the full team effort.
I've been on teams that were carried by a few stars (Stars and Scrubs) but the most rewarding teams have been lunch pail specials. No Stars, only Civics. When one feels like the team is simply outworking the other team - this is especially possible in ice hockey - it's an amazing feeling. In baseball, the equivalent is the classic "it's a different guy every night."
We've been too many nights without a different guy stepping up but the Mojo will return because this Ms team simply has it.