Art Thiel, of the Seattle PI, has a new book out (Out of Left Field — How the Mariners Made Baseball Fly in Seattle), and the PI’s been running excerpts from it:
Mariners nearly fanned on Junior
Piniella, Lincoln clash led to exit
Big Unit’s attitude a role in ’98 trade
Ellis issued challenge, and M’s got their leader
Definately recommended reading for the M’s fan.
Disturbing quote of the day, from the PI’s M’s notebook by David Andriessen:
What the Mariners do this winter becomes far less predictable should Gillick depart, though with the rest of management committed to the game plan, it’s unlikely his replacement would deviate far from the Gillick Doctrine.
“We’re all in this together,” Gillick said. “It’s an organizational approach.”
Let’s start crossing the interesting candidates off our GM lists, Dave.
And in the laughable analysis category:
Speaking of third base, being on the hook for nearly $13 million for All-Star-turned-pine-rider Jeff Cirillo over the next two years is an issue. Their best chance to get rid of him is to package him with someone more attractive — perhaps Garcia — and agree to eat part of the contract.
Let’s role-play here. I’m another GM, and I’ll also be FUTURE M’S GM.
“Hey fellow GM, Roger here.”
“What’s up, Roger?”
“I know you need pitching, and we’ve got too much.”
“Cool, send me Soriano and Blackley and I’ll give you this spice rack.”
“Um, no, I was thinking about Garcia.”
“What, are you serious? Even if you win the maximum decrease in arbitration, I’ll be on the hook for what, six million dollars? For what, a lottery ticket?”
“Yeah, okay, that’s true, but you know, maybe he thrives over there.”
“And maybe he hates it. Tell you what, though, our scouts like him, and I think maybe we can work with him. What do you want?”
“Couple of young kids in A ball would be fine.”
“Okay, I think we might be able to swing this deal.”
“One more thing… you’d have to take Cirillo too. We’d be willing to pay part of his contract.”
“Roger, call me back when the crack wears off.”
As much as I’d like to see the Tacoma guys mop up the saeson, how about using John Olerud? If he tears his elbow up and has to go in for Tommy John, we collect insurance next year and upgrade. Where’s the downside?
Note of the day: Pat Borders was drafted just behind Alvin Davis in the 1982 draft.
From Lee Sinins’ email report: “Mariners DH Edgar Martinez says he hasn’t decided yet whether he will be
retiring after the season. Martinez says a big factor in the decision is his 9 year old son doesn’t want him to retire.”
Isn’t this distilled Edgar for you?
(Edgar comes home after road trip and head-to-head with Gillick. He sets down his bags.)
“Boy, I am exhausted. Family, I have an announcement. I’ve had enough of baseball. I want to spend more time with you.”
“We like seeing you be so awesome. Hang out with us later.”
(Edgar picks up bags, walks back out)
Just crunching some numbers this morning, and we’ll make this available as a U.S.S. Mariner offseason feature soon, but here is how the 2004 roster breaks down as of today, not including 40 man roster minor leaguers:
1. $40.5 million in guaranteed contracts to seven players
2. 18 players under control through contracts, arbitration, or renewal.
3. Six arbitration eligible players that I project at a total cost of $25 million.
4. Six free agents, whose total cost to retain would be about $20 million
5. If the entire 2003 club was retained, the approximate payroll: $88 million.