Dave · November 1, 2004 at 9:58 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

The Mariners declined their 2005 option on Eddie Guardado today. I’ve already gotten a couple of emails wondering why the team doesn’t want him back; relax, he’ll be a Mariner next year. We’ve been telling you the team would do this for two months. There’s no way Guardado gets $4.5 million on the open market. I’d be surprised if it took him more than a couple of days to pick up his player option.


34 Responses to “Guardado”

  1. Jerry on November 2nd, 2004 12:04 am


    Do you think that there is any chance that he would decline that option and test free agency? I know that he still has another year on his contract. And I know that his value is diminished because of the injury. However, this is a really weak class of closers this year. If he could somehow demonstrate that he is healthy, some team might splurge on him (like the Cubs). He has been a great closer the past three years. Since Armando Benitez is the only legit closer on the market, you never know.

    It might be best if he left. That would be another 4.5 million to spend (or another 2 million to spend on ‘mid-season acquisitions’ or some other Lincolnism). If he is healthy, he is a great player. But the M’s have a lot more pressing needs.

  2. Scott on November 2nd, 2004 12:43 am

    I just heard Eddie’s phone interview on NWCN sports. He said he does not think he deserves the extra 2 mil and if it is a place closer to his home (south ca) whether is LA or SD, he would consider it. But he does not think he can get 4 million elsewhere.

  3. Matt on November 2nd, 2004 12:49 am

    I have to say, objectively, if I were Eddie, I wouldnt activate my half of the contract at all. I’d walk away, take less money, and play for a good team, because realistically, the M’s are a year away at least. So Why not spend that year making a little less, but winning?

  4. JJ on November 2nd, 2004 3:00 am

    well, Eddie did not mention anything about wanting to play for your so called “good team”. All he said was he wants to play closer to his home which is in ca. And he said Seattle is very close unless the interest comes from south CA teams. Obviously his priority is differnt from yours.

  5. eponymous coward on November 2nd, 2004 3:06 am

    He’ll be back, and Lincoln will use the $2 million to buy Jeff Nelson a replacement boom box.

  6. Matt on November 2nd, 2004 3:07 am

    Well, remember that interview in which he said bluntly, if he knew what was going to happen to the team, would he have signed? “No.” Some people make 4 or 5 mill playing the game, and then stick around because they love the game, not the money. And its more fun to play for a team thats good. All the south Cali teams wouldnt mind having him, I’m sure. He could sign a 1 year contract, and enter the market next year with undamaged goods.

    I’m just saying its possible, and really, isnt a bad choice from his perspective.

  7. JJ on November 2nd, 2004 4:25 am

    #6, I wouldn’t be so sure if I were you. Eddie’s 2nd opinion on the rotator cuff is Angel’s doctor. So they do know very well he does have a tear on his shoulder. I doubt he can make 4 million there. Not to mention you are talking about an interview during half of the season before his injury while I am talking about what he said yesterday on TV.

  8. don on November 2nd, 2004 6:41 am

    #6, the angels have no use for another reliever. however, the dodgers and the padres do. you can also throw arizona, oakland and san francisco in the mix. i suspect he’ll end up staying a mariner, however, and spending 75% of the season on the DL.

  9. seymour butz on November 2nd, 2004 9:28 am

    Sorry, I came in late.
    What’s the history behind the M’s owing Jeff Nelson for a boom box?

  10. Chris Lee on November 2nd, 2004 10:13 am

    Re: Jeff Nelson’s boombox….

    Back before the 2001 season, Jeff Nelson had stated that he would sign with the Marines if they would buy him this particular boombox. Apparently, this certain boombox is made in Japan by the Nintendo people that has the ability to play video games, has an alarm clock, can calculate the speed of ones fastball….in three different time zones, and also continusly play Britney Spears songs unless otherwise programmed. Jeff Nelson’s daughter, Ashlee, is a HUGE Britney fan. So, the Mariners go ahead and purchase Nelson this amazing music machine/ calculator/ perkalator/ radar gun and all is fine til August of 2003. This is where it gets a lil confusing. After Nelson complained to management about a lack of support after the M’s FO didn’t add any players at the trading deadline, the FO swooped in and took away Nelson’s prized Boomy. Innitially, Nelson thought Sasaki was the thief, but after questioning around the clubhouse, Nelson found out that Sasaki was a Sony Playstation player. Nelson soon found out thru Rick Rizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz what had happened. Now Nelson was angry. He couldn’t concentrate on his slider, his daughter Ashlee bought her own Karoke machine, and Sasake was angry at being accused of being a clubhouse thief. The Mariners FO had no alternative but to trade Nelson to the Yankees. In the World Series of 2003, Jeff Nelson had a Boombox breakdown and proceeded to attack fans in the stands. Nelson needed to have his boombox to perform not only on the field, but away from it as well. It was a mental thing. Now, flash forward to Spring Training 2004: Nelson demanded the Mariners either reimburse him for his stolen Boomy, or buy him another one. Neither side backed down. A mediator was brought in. His ruling was that the Mariners would have to pay Nelson, over four years, the value of the boombox. Howard Lincolon, hearing of this decision, has included that payment in the players payroll for not only this year, but the next three years as well. Think it totalled $99 a year…plus tax. Many people in the FO has pointed to this accident as the one that started the down fall of Mariners: Less money to spend on free agents, Sasaki not wanting to come back, and children lip-synching on television.

  11. Aaron on November 2nd, 2004 10:45 am

    The Little League field I coached on a few years ago has a large sign about all the donations it’s recieved from Guadardo, as it’s apparently the field he played on as a youth(?). This is about an hour outside Oakland. Do they still have Dotel locked up?

  12. G-Man on November 2nd, 2004 12:33 pm

    Guardado was raised in Stockton and lived there until just a year or two ago. It’s about an hour from Oakland.

  13. Adam B. on November 2nd, 2004 1:14 pm

    Does anyone honestly expect Guardado to contribute any significant innings for the Mariners next year? Yeah, me neither.
    It kind of concerns me that the M’s haven’t mentioned bullpen help as a priority next year.

    Certainly getting a couple of big-bats for the corners and/or the outfield is the biggest priority, but I would say having a reliable arm (or “relief ace”) out of the BP is just as important for the M’s as signing a starter.
    I would be real happy if Perceivel was wearing a compass rose next season. =)

  14. Jerry on November 2nd, 2004 1:18 pm


    From what I gather, there is no reason to think that Guardado can’t pitch next year. Besides, I would rather see Putz get another shot than have them sign an over-the-hill closer like Percival. If the M’s were trying to contend this year, that move makes sense. But he is not a long-term solution at closer.

  15. msb on November 2nd, 2004 1:24 pm

    #13- Bavasi mentions it each time he lists the team needs– paraphrasing here:

    -bring power in, likely at the 1st/3rd/outfield position(s)
    -a reliever; prob. not a closer per-se, but a pitcher who could setup with the make-up to close
    -1 or 2 starters; what they have are #3-5’s and as he feels there are only a handful of true #1s out there (and Pedro isn’t one of them any more), they are looking to get someone from the pool of #2s that will be on the market

  16. vj on November 2nd, 2004 1:56 pm

    What’s the root of the pessimism about Guardado being able to contribute next year? I am asking not only Adam but also Dave/DMZ who both have been pessimistic, too. AFAK, not having surgery was the recommendation of Anaheim’s team doctor who’s said to be the leading expert on this. To date, all news about Guardado’s rehab have been positive.

  17. JJ on November 2nd, 2004 2:11 pm

    vj,because no one knows. Even Bavasi at the KJR interview said that as of today, Eddie looks like he is OK to go, but no one would know for sure until spring training and he does have a tear on the shoulder. I don’t have enough knowledge on rotator cuff injury, but for me at this point,Eddie is going into 2005 season with a big question mark.

  18. PositivePaul on November 2nd, 2004 2:24 pm

    Gee, here we go again. Sounds like our closer situation going into 2004. Sasaki was a HUGE question mark (health) and then he threw that whole “I’m going back to Japan” thing into the pot.

    Same old broken record, folks. At least they’re “saving” the two million by not picking up the option. So where’s this “Guardado Fund” going THIS year? I suspect they’ll really go after a veteran reliever, and overpay. Or maybe they’ll just give it to Villone.

  19. The Real Metz on November 2nd, 2004 3:22 pm

    Guardado tends to be a little negative towards the Mariners Organization, but there’s nothing wrong with a vocal player, especially if he’s a valuable one. I definitely think we should try to get Guardado back considering it could be for $4 mil or under. I know nobody likes the things that Guardado said about the Mariners, but it’s not his fault that they suck. It’s Bavasi’s.

    PS-Who’s this other cat posting messages with the name Metz? My name is Metz! There can’t be two Metz’s!

  20. PositivePaul on November 2nd, 2004 3:39 pm

    I wouldn’t put much energy into blaming Bavasi. True, you can question some of his decisions, but ultimately I still think his hands are bound and gagged by Howard Lincoln. That seemed to be a counterintuitive hiring, considering Howard F. Lincoln’s business model. I was quite surprised he didn’t hire the moneyball-apprentice DePodesta.

    I still stand by my thoughts that the M’s will never win another playoff series (let alone a World Series) as long as Howard is CEO.

    It’s out of our hands now, though, unless Eddie declines his option. There’s nothing, now, that Bavasi can do. The ball’s in Eddie’s court, and I’d guess that 70-30 odds are he’s returning to the M’s. Maybe a little higher. The only thing that would prevent him from coming back would be for a SoCal team (likely one with a chance to win) to try and woo him away. I’m sure he’ll take the Chris-Farley’s-sliced-pizza-pie-majority of a week to poke feelers out in that area to see who may be interested. Yes, the Dodgers have Gagne, but they could use some bolstering. I wonder about the Giants, too.

  21. Jim Thomsen on November 2nd, 2004 3:42 pm

    Don’t you think it’s possible, or even likely, that Guardado and/or his agent sat down with Bavasi recently and discussed option scenarios? Somehow I don’t think major league organizations leave to chance decisions like this to the extent that they publicly appear to do so. I’m willing to bet the team went to Guardado and said, hey, we really do hope to get some quality innings out of you but you and I both know that you can’t count on anything where rotator cuffs are concerned — particularly without surgery — so while it’s not worth it to us to exercise our option at $6 million, we think enough of you and what you might be able to give us in 2005, and almost certainly in 2006, to pick up your option again at $4-million-plus even though it’s entirely possible you might not pitch a single inning for that money. That to me is a great deal for both sides — Guardado gets financial security against a physically insecure future, and the M’s keep a closer they like with his and their long-term interests in mind.

    Keep in mind that the Yankees did something similar to this with Jon Lieber — though obviously the money, injury and contract circumstances were much different — and that didn’t work out too badly.

    All personnel moves in baseball are risky. Every team has to make a certain amount of calculated risks for their betterment. I don’t see this one with Guardado as being substantively any worse than, say, going to arbitration with Gil Meche and losing for $3.8 million a year.

    I sincerely hope Dave is right.

  22. mfan on November 2nd, 2004 4:23 pm

    Guardado is technically a free agent (for 7 days, I saw reported). Does anyone know if he can speak with other teams regarding financial terms? Or, is he just like the other free agents right now?

  23. Ryan on November 2nd, 2004 4:51 pm

    The AL gold gloves were announced today and apparently the gold glove middle infield is Derek Jeter and Bret Boone. I’m speechless. Maybe someone out there can make sense of this???

  24. ChrisK on November 2nd, 2004 5:21 pm

    Actually I heard they really wanted to give Jeter 2 gold gloves. One for Jeter and another for his ‘intangibles’.

  25. Jim Thomsen on November 2nd, 2004 5:22 pm

    Let me guess … Jeter had the best fielding percentage among shortstops. Which means less than nothing.

  26. ChrisK on November 2nd, 2004 5:45 pm

    The sportswriters must have been brainwashed by seeing that highlight of Jeter jumping into the stands about 4,800 times. Personally, I would rather have Crosby, Guillen, Tejada, or Vizquel as my defensive SS.

    This ranks up there with when Raffy won the GG at 1st base in 1999…despite playing 28 games at the position.

  27. PaulP on November 2nd, 2004 5:51 pm

    I thought Guardado’s contract had him getting a $2mil bonus in 05 and 06 if he’s declared the closer. Also, if he isn’t the closer, he has an option to opt out of the contract. Okay, all of this is from the
    Seattle Times
    : but still I’m curious if anyone knows anything about it.

  28. David J Corcoran on November 2nd, 2004 6:14 pm

    Eddie just excercised his option.

  29. tede on November 2nd, 2004 6:35 pm

    Holy cow! Boone won a Gold Glove for his 2004 performance?

    The guy could hardly throw home at the end of the year.

  30. PositivePaul on November 2nd, 2004 6:39 pm

    If that’s true, David, then Chris Farley sure didn’t eat much pizza ; )

  31. John on November 2nd, 2004 8:43 pm

    Re (# 1): “He has been a great closer the past three years. ”
    The last THREE. Really? I’m not sure what the benchmark for S/SO is, 4/5, 5/6 (80%, 83.3%), but it sure isn’t 2004’s 18/25 (72%).

  32. Metz on November 2nd, 2004 10:42 pm

    Other Metz,

    I’ve been posting as Metz ever since USSM started allowing comments. I’ve even got a nameplate on my door to verify it 🙂

  33. The Real Metz on November 3rd, 2004 1:36 am

    There can only be one Metz. I suhjest dat u rename yoself foo.

  34. msb on November 3rd, 2004 10:06 am

    “Let me guess … Jeter had the best fielding percentage among shortstops. Which means less than nothing.–Comment by Jim Thomsen

    nope. not even that.

    “The sportswriters must have been brainwashed by seeing that highlight of Jeter jumping into the stands about 4,800 times.”– Comment by ChrisK

    and, FWIW, Jeter didn’t ‘jump’ into the stands, unlike Reese earlier in the game. He caught the ball on the warning track, and his momentum carried him into the stands… sigh.