New Name?

Dave · December 9, 2009 at 10:06 am · Filed Under Mariners 

This is not a rumor. The source for this idea is me. I am not reporting anything.

Okay, now that that’s out of the way, let me throw this out there. Jon Paul Morosi has reported that the Dodgers and Tigers are looking for a third team with an expensive pitcher to send to LA, allowing those two teams to move Juan Pierre to Detroit and Carlos Guillen to that third team.

The Mariners should absolutely be trying to insert themselves into that conversation. Carlos Guillen would be a nice fit for what the Mariners are looking for, as a guy who could play LF or 1B, depending on how the roster shook out. Switch-hitter with the patient approach that the team is obviously emphasizing and some power in his bat. He’s coming off a bad year that is almost entirely BABIP driven (.267 in 2009 vs .325 career), which combined with his salary, should make him a decent option as a buy low candidate.

The salary is why he’d be available in the first palce. He’s due $13 million each of the next two years, so the M’s should only be interested in a scenario where payroll is going away – specifically, Carlos Silva. The paychecks due to Pierre, Silva, and Guillen are similar enough to where it wouldn’t require huge amounts of money changing hands to make everything balance out. The tough part would be trying to figure out what else the M’s would have to include to make this work, as Silva’s clearly the least valuable asset of the three.

It seems to me that there may be a deal to be made here, though. The Dodgers also need a second baseman, while the M’s are obviously shopping theirs. Some kind of deal where Lopez and Silva made their way to LA, Pierre went to Detroit, and Guillen and something came to Seattle makes a lot of sense.

Be involved in this one, Jack. Find out if there’s a good fit here. From my perspective, there may be.


72 Responses to “New Name?”

  1. Toddk on December 9th, 2009 12:21 pm

    That’s why you have to bring Lopez in but then again, if there’s a deal to be made between LA and Seattle for Lopez, I’m not sure why you don’t just make that deal and forget about Pierre/Silva.

    Because just trading Lopez doesn’t do anything to mitigate the Silva money. If they make this trade you have dropped an albatross contract, addressed 1B and gotten some small value out of Lopez for essentially the same money they have already spent. And they would probably get something else in return, though not a big name.

    And if they sign Beltre, your infield is now set and significantly better than last year.

  2. Liam on December 9th, 2009 12:26 pm

    And if they sign Beltre, your infield is now set and significantly better than last year.

    Dave had this to say about Beltre at third and Figgins at second,

    That blocks Ackley, Tui, and Triunfel. Marginal benefit not large enough for the M’s to have both.

  3. Max Power on December 9th, 2009 12:27 pm


    Because just trading Lopez doesn’t do anything to mitigate the Silva money. If they make this trade you have dropped an albatross contract, addressed 1B and gotten some small value out of Lopez for essentially the same money they have already spent.

    Yeah, but why would the Dodgers make that deal? Look, let’s agree that Guillen is a useful player. Pierre is…not good but he’s not a total waste of a roster spot (pinch runner, defensive replacement, etc).

    Silva on the other hand? The M’s have stashed him on the DL for huge chunks of his contract because he’s so bad that you can improve the team just by replacing him with just about any random pitcher on the Rainiers. Why would the Dodgers want that guy instead of Pierre?

  4. John S. on December 9th, 2009 12:34 pm

    Dave, so what type of player comes from L.A. (or Detroit) if Silva and Lopez head that direction? Obviously you’re probably talking about a pretty marginal player … but I would think someone else would have to be included. A reliever … once Kelley and Morrow are traded?

  5. MsofEnchantment on December 9th, 2009 12:46 pm

    In concept, I like this a lot. If we’re going to have a bloated salary, I’d at least like them to be contributing and filling one of the holes we have this winter. Guillen at 1B where he has a UZR/150 of +12.7 in 70 career games makes the most sense, where he and Carp can be switched interchangeably. Despite the fact that this is purely speculation and rosterbation at this point, what would be the next dominoes to fall?

    With 1B/DH taken care of with Carp and Guillen and about $3-4 million (cash to LA) out of the budget, what do you do with the remaining $10-12 million?

    Sign Harden to an incentive rich deal with a base of 1yr @ $7.5MM? – I see this as a given no matter what.

    Keep Lopez around to play 2B with Figgins settling in at 3B, and look to add value in LF or in the rotation to go with Harden and Felix (i.e. Correia could become available on the cheap if the Padres non-tender him and could benefit from the M’s great defense)

    Sign Beltre to a 3-4 yr @ 8MM/yr deal, move Figgins over 2B, and ship Lopez off for an arm?

    Just trying to think how this would fit and adjust the roster construction strategy…so humor me.

  6. Mid80sRighty on December 9th, 2009 1:02 pm

    Pretty interesting idea, to say the least. Something definitely worth exploring.

    Does anyone have any idea if it was Bavasi’s or upper management’s idea to get rid of the “problem child” that was Guillen? If it was HowChuck’s idea, maybe they wouldn’t want him back…I don’t know how long they keep grudges.

  7. Paul B on December 9th, 2009 1:08 pm

    Look, I hate Carlos Silva too, and he has been a disaster for the Mariners, but hasn’t his failure with the M’s been just a little bit mental? It’s not like his problems have been physical

    Since he came back from his injury, his sinker hasn’t been sinking.

    I think that is physical more than mental.

  8. J-Dog on December 9th, 2009 1:12 pm

    Even if Silva is free, does he actually add any value over some random scrap-heap guy?

    According to Fangraphs, Silva’s performance was worth $6.9 million in 2008 and ($0.4 million) in 2009.

  9. Max Power on December 9th, 2009 1:26 pm


    According to Fangraphs, Silva’s performance was worth $6.9 million in 2008 and ($0.4 million) in 2009.

    IIRC, most of Silva’s contribution in 2008 came in the early part of the season. He’s been basically worthless for the past year and a half. The only way that this trade happens is if Colletti & company decide that Silva is over his injury issues or whatever and is likely to recover to at least 2008 levels. I’m just not sure why they’d reach that conclusion.

  10. Toddk on December 9th, 2009 1:30 pm

    Yeah, but why would the Dodgers make that deal

    My understanding is they want to get pitching without spending more money. This would be one way to do it.


    Maybe Figgins in left and Tui at 2B until Ackley’s ready?

  11. The Ancient Mariner on December 9th, 2009 1:31 pm

    Taken all in all, I think a deal along the lines Dave suggests would help the team; though I wonder, if we did it, if it would be plausible to play Figgins at 2B and move Carlos back across the diamond to 3B. If so, that would give Zduriencik even a bit more flexibility in building the roster.

    On the one hand, I have to admit I’ve been hoping for a 1B who could contribute more than a .350 wOBA (and that’s the Bill James projection, which tends to be high); but on the other, converting $12 million of our payroll from pure sunk cost (of the “I hope he can at least be a decent mop-up man” variety) to someone who would actually contribute would be a huge win. Sure, moving Lopez would create another hole, so it’s not free money — but if we got another useful piece coming back, no reason we couldn’t strengthen ourselves in another area, too.

    It would be an odd sort of deal, but I hope Zduriencik’s able to insert himself in the mix. And who knows? Send Silva to the NL, he might actually give the Dodgers something.

    I’m still hoping for Ryan Doumit, too — he and Carlos would make a remarkable pair of additions, and would give our lineup and roster about as many possible combinations as a Rubik’s Cube.

  12. joser on December 9th, 2009 1:42 pm

    See, this is why Dave needs to be at the meetings: he just doesn’t wear a name tag and mumbles something about this in the general direction of any non-Seattle media. Before you know it the LA Times and Detroit… (does Detroit still have a newspaper?) are asking what the hold up on this deal is.

  13. cumminjb on December 9th, 2009 1:59 pm


  14. timandren on December 9th, 2009 2:00 pm

    Doumit would be a sweet addition. Have him start out at catcher and then transition to 1B if/when Moore is ready.

  15. PositivePaul on December 9th, 2009 2:01 pm

    So is this your reply to my question to you on Twitter? 🙂

    I suggested that ‘something’ be George Sherrill, who’s getting expensive for LA (and it’s widely reported that they’re shopping him). As Graham pointed out on LookoutLanding, the salary imbalance favors Detroit a little too much, sure, but I think everyone wins a little bit in that scenario.

    If the Dodgers would prefer not to take on Lopez’s salary, though, what if the M’s added in someone like French, Fister or Vargas instead? The Dodgers really do want pitching badly without having to spend a whole lot for it. They’re certainly not going to get their wish of a TOR starter if Pierre, Sherrill Blake, etc. is what they’re looking to trade.

  16. joser on December 9th, 2009 2:05 pm

    Man, wouldn’t it have been fun to have Granderson hitting in Safeco (and playing LF — how great would that outfield be?) Ah well, might’ve-beens….

  17. MarinerFan on December 9th, 2009 2:06 pm

    Harden has supposedly signed…Hopefully with the M’s!

  18. Breadbaker on December 9th, 2009 2:10 pm

    Of course the other thing about the Dodgers wanting to move Pierre is they have no position for him to play. The Tigers have a vacancy in center and no real place for Carlos to play. The M’s don’t need Silva (even if he were worth anything) and the Dodgers need a starter. I think this is essentially self-evident, but it’s not just about moving money around, it’s about allocating that money to fill a need rather than have a very expensive bench player or long reliever.

  19. Russ on December 9th, 2009 7:58 pm

    I know this late to the party and all that but any trades that could bring Bradley to Seattle should be a no go.

    A snake is a snake. A snake does what is will do. Milton Bradley will do what he does. No amount of magic fairy dust/hope or tickles or peer pressure will lift whatever demons taunt Bradley. He’ll, that’s being generous. He may just be a total asshole. For all we know the public Bradley is him on his best behavior. No thanks.

  20. mymrbig on December 10th, 2009 8:33 am

    I posted this over at PI before reading Dave’s post over here, so might as well add it to the discussion.

    This is just me rosterbating because I like the Lopez to Dodgers suggestion, as well as the rumors of the Dodgers/Tigers looking for a 3rd team in a Guillen/Pierre trade. Numbers in parenthesis are contract info for 2010-2012.

    Dodgers get: Jose Lopez ($2.3 M, $4.5 M option), Carlos Silva ($11.5 M, $11.5 M, $2 M), cash from Mariners and Tigers

    Tigers get: Juan Pierre ($10 M, $8.5 M)

    Mariners get: Carlos Guillen ($13 M, $13 M), prospects from Dodgers

    Looking at the contracts only, the salary implications would be:
    Dodgers: +$3.8 M in 2010, +$7.5 M in 2011, +$2 M in 2012
    Tigers: -$3 M in 2010, -$4.5 M in 2011
    Mariners: -$0.8 M in 2010, -$3 M in 2011, -$2 M in 2012

    Obviously the Dodgers aren’t in a position to take on that kind of cash and the Tigers wouldn’t be able to get out of that amount of Guillen’s contract. The Dodgers have a history of giving up better prospects if the trade partner is willing to pick up a big chunk of the contract (Blake & Ramirez trades in 2008). So I would suggest the Tigers throw in $2.5 M in 2010 and $4 M in 2011. This lets them marginally reduce payroll while getting more athletic. The Mariners would then include $1 M in 2010 and $2.5 M in 2011, leaving the final finances at:
    Dodgers: +$0.3 M in 2010, +$1.0 M in 2011, +$2 M in 2012
    Tigers: -$0.5 M in 2010, -$0.5 M in 2011
    Mariners: +$0.2 M in 2010, -$0.5 in 2011, -$2 M in 2012

    The Dodgers have a number of interesting arms in their system (Winthrow, Lindblom, Eovaldi, Martin (wouldn’t happen), Elbert, McDonald) as well as some interesting but lower ceiling infielders (DeWitt, Hu, DeJesus jr., Baez, Gordon (wouldn’t happen)). I could see some combination going to the Mariners.

    Trade makes sense for everyone:
    Dodgers: keep payroll in check, get some veteran rotation depth, get an upgrade at 2B
    Tigers: get more athletic and slight payroll reduction
    Mariners: get rid of Silva for a player with decent offense and some position flexibility, move Lopez to clear way for other alternatives, pick up decent prospects/young players

  21. mymrbig on December 10th, 2009 9:02 am

    Couple other things.

    (1) The group-think hate on Carlos Silva is getting annoying. Yes, he is overpaid. Yes, he is overweight. Yes, his contract is an albatross (though there are worse – Zito, Wells, Soriano). But a lot of you are acting like he was never any good and/or has zero chance of returning to what he was. He put up a WAR over 3 in 2004, 2005, and 2007. Since becoming a SP in 2004, he has 11.2 WAR, which makes him just below league average in a 6-year span. I don’t like him and I don’t like his contract, but he certainly has a non-zero chance of returning to form as an overpaid, strike-throwing, groundballer. Maybe the M’s have to eat some money even in a bad-contract swap with another team. But I doubt everyone in baseball has so given up on Silva that no one would take him under any circumstances, which seems to be what 1/2 of the posters here believe.

    Just because he was completely worthless last year doesn’t make him worth less than a generic AAAA arm in a revenue-neutral transaction. AAAA arms can’t put up 3 WAR seasons, which Silva has. AAAA arms will never be good enough to throw 150 major league innings in a season, which Silva has done 5 times. So please, just be reasonable in your hate.

    (2) Maybe this is just anectdotal or bad memory on my part, but in the past I seem to remember some of Bradley’s teammates speaking out on his behalf. Maybe they were just doing it for posterity or to preserve some semblance of clubhouse order. But my impression has been that Bradley has a terrible relationship with the media, a mediocre relationship with coaching staffs, and an OK relationship with his teammates. He is certainly in the lower tier of personalities you want in your clubhouse, but he probably isn’t as bad as his reputation, and he can certainly hit. While I understand the concern about bring someone with his temperment into the clubhouse, I don’t understand the hate or complete aversion.

  22. mymrbig on December 10th, 2009 9:11 am

    After thinking about the Silva+Lopez/Pierre/Guillen possibilities a little more, the team it makes the least sense for is Detroit. For it to work, Detroit would probably need a little more salary relief from what I suggested above, or the M’s could send one of their relivers (White?). Guillen to Pierre doesn’t make much sense unless the Tigers are saving a couple million in the process, or picking up a useful player.

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