Choose Your Own Conclusion

December 23, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 173 Comments 

It’s not quite an adventure, but the Morrow for League/Chavez trade is certainly a departure from what we have come to expect from the Mariners over the last year. Safe to say, there are not too many Mariner fans who like the return. Whatever you think of Morrow, an arbitration eligible reliever and an A-ball version of Wladimir Balentien is not exactly what we expected his market value to be.

So, I think this trade leads to three possible conclusions. You can pick any of the three.

1. These guys are not fans, at all, of Brandon Morrow, and had no interest beginning the season with him in the starting rotation. They shopped him all winter, and this was the best they could do. They like League as a reliever more than Morrow as a reliever, and since they didn’t see Brandon as a starter, they took the chance to upgrade the bullpen. This also requires us to conclude that no one in baseball sees Morrow as a particularly valuable piece, since this was theoretically the best the team could do during a winter where it was obvious that he was going to be traded.

2. This trade is a setup to another deal. Some yet unnamed third team wanted League or Chavez, and the M’s will use them as chips to get something that they couldn’t use Morrow to get. Or perhaps some team wants Aardsma or Lowe or Kelley, and the Mariners preferred to bring in their replacement before they trade them away.

3. This deal was part of the Cliff Lee trade. It was always weird that the Halladay and Lee portions of the deal were announced together, yet they were essentially two separate transactions, with no players going back and forth between Seattle and Toronto. Remember, we all feel like the Mariners got Lee for significantly less than he should have cost, and the expectation the entire time the rumor was developing was that Morrow was going to be in the deal. Perhaps that portion of the negotiations just couldn’t get finalized before the trade had to be announced (remember, the Phillies only had 72 hours to negotiate with Halladay), so the Mariners and Blue Jays agreed to work out the Morrow aspect of the trade at a later date.

Personally, I think I believe #3. Can I prove it? No, of course not. But it makes the most sense. Does all of baseball not valuing Morrow strike anyone as likely, especially after rumors of Detroit offering up Edwin Jackson for him and the Brewers coveting him for several years now? Does it seem likely that the Mariners would trade Morrow for a less valuable reliever and a mediocre prospect in an effort to make another deal without actually securing that deal at the time? Jack knows how to make a three way deal, so if he was flipping parts to another organization for someone else, why wouldn’t they just do it at the same time?

To me, the last one is the most logical. The M’s didn’t give up enough to get Lee unless you include this as part of that deal, in which case the price is much more fair. This makes the Halladay deal look a lot better for Toronto, and explains why they were willing to kick in $6 million in salary to help Philadelphia be able to make the deal. It also explains why Philadelphia shipped Lee to Seattle, rather than shopping him for a better package somewhere else.

If we conclude that this deal was part of last week’s trade, then it answers a lot of questions. It explains why a team that has made so many good moves inexplicably makes a lousy one. It explains why the Mariners were able to get Cliff Lee for three mediocre prospects. It explains why the Phillies weren’t willing to look for another team who would pay more for Lee in the three way deal.

So, that’s my theory. The M’s actually traded Brandon Morrow, Phillippe Aumont, Tyson Gillies, and JC Ramirez for Cliff Lee, Brandon League, and Johermyn Chavez.

Morrow Traded?

December 21, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 313 Comments 

Ken Rosenthal just sent out a twitter message stating that sources have told him that the Mariners have reached a “tentative” agreement to trade Brandon Morrow to Toronto for Brandon League and a prospect.

My first reaction is that there’s information missing here. I can’t see the M’s dealing Morrow for a relief pitcher and a prospect as they gear up to win in 2010. There has to be more to this, unless the “prospect” is someone like Brett Wallace, who could step in and fill the gap at first base.

League, if you’re not aware, throws really hard. His average fastball is 95 MPH, and its not a hit-me four seam fastball, but instead a heavy, diving sinker. He gets a ton of ground balls with it, and finally started getting strikeouts last year as well. He could be an elite relief pitcher if he can keep command of his stuff. But, that’s the rub – he’s a relief pitcher, which inherently limits his value. He’s also arbitration eligible and only under team control for three more years, so he’s a short term asset.

That’s why the prospect is obviously the important factor. League is a nice pitcher, kind of like Mark Lowe with more ground balls, but not the value that you give up Morrow for.

Update: Jordan Bastian, a reliable reporter from Toronto, reports that Johermyn Chavez is the prospect the M’s are getting. Chavez is Toronto’s version of Greg Halman – toolsy RH outfielder with power and terrible plate discipline, hit well repeating low-A ball as a 20-year-old last year. Upside, sure, but a long way from the majors and lots of flaws. If true, this is the first deal Jack has made that I truly dislike. Full analysis when its official.

New Venue For USSM Event

December 21, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 76 Comments 

And we’re sold out again. I literally can’t get a bigger venue than this without renting out Key Arena or something. Hopefully, there aren’t too many disappointed folks out there. Look forwarding to see all 540 (!) of you in a few weeks.

Second update: We’re seeing occasional refunds on tickets sold, so tickets do open up from time to time. It’s worth checking to see if any have become available if you’re still looking to get in.

So, the response to the January 9th USSM event was overwhelming. We sold out in three hours, and then were bombarded by people wanting to attend who didn’t get tickets. So, in order to accommodate more people, we (okay, Matthew did – thanks man!) have found a larger venue for the event – Benaroya Hall. The Nordstrom Recital Hall holds 540 people, so we can essentially double the space for you guys.

This comes at a significant cost increase. The library charges a fraction of what we’re going to have to pay to rent the new space. So, to make this work, the new tickets that are being made available will cost $17 – $15 of that will come to us, and $2 goes to Brown Paper TIckets for their service charge (it goes from $0.99 to $1.99 once you cross the $10 ticket threshold). In order to cover our costs, we need to sell about 200 more tickets at this higher price, so I’m betting on there still being significant demand for this event. I think I’m right. I hope I am.

Anyway, the ticket window is open at BPT again. Again, please select “physical tickets” and have them mailed to you or print-at-home. This will make everything go much, much more smoothly on the day of the event than if we’re having to check IDs at Will Call for a couple hundred people.

There are 265 more tickets available at this price. I have no idea how long they will last. The last batch sold out in half a day. If you want to go, buy them now. Don’t wait. I can’t get a bigger venue than this. When they’re gone, they’re gone.

So, that’s the scoop – $17 gets you in, everything else is the same – January 9th, 1 pm to 5 pm, good times to be had by all.

Note – if you already bought tickets, you’re in. We’re honoring your $10 tickets. The new folks will have to bear the cost of the larger venue.

First Base Options

December 19, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 143 Comments 

I know the excitement-o-meter is off the charts right now, and the last week has raised everyone’s expectations for how Jack is going to finish the off-season. First base is the obvious next step, and since they got Cliff Lee, why not dream about Adrian Gonzalez, Prince Fielder, Lance Berkman, or Joey Votto, right?

The problem, though, is that you can only acquire players who the other team wants to trade. And there’s just no real signs that any of those guys are available right now. You can want them to be, but if they aren’t, they aren’t. They may be available at some point in the future, but as of today, the odds of getting any of those kinds of players are slim, and the price you would have to pay to get it done is prohibitive.

That is why, in reality, I think the M’s are going to end up spending $4 to $5 million on a solid, non-star first baseman for 2010. They have around $10 million or so left in the budget, and I’d expect them to save some cash to sign one of the injury prone/old starting pitchers on the market, whether that be Erik Bedard, Ben Sheets, John Smoltz, Pedro Martinez, Randy Johnson, or whoever. I also get the feeling that they’re going to sign a reliever, and they’d love to have a lefty for Wak to use in the 7th/8th innings. So, saving some cash and getting a less sexy name at first base is probably the way to go. And if something opens up for a bigger acquisition down the line, you can evaluate whether it’s the right move then.

Essentially, here are the options that I’m aware of as of now:

Via Trade:

Lyle Overbay, Toronto

The classic average first baseman. He doesn’t do anything well or poorly. He makes okay contact. He draws some walks. He hits for some power. His defense at first is fine. He’s just average across the board, offering little risk and little upside. Given the M’s roster, that’s actually a pretty valuable piece, because he’s the kind of player you can count on without worrying about significant variance. The win or two he would add over Mike Carp is pretty important in terms of the M’s playoff chances, so even if he’s not exciting, it is a real upgrade and potentially worth pursuing.

He’s due $7 million in the final year of his contract, then he’s a free agent. You could probably get the Blue Jays to kick in a couple million if the M’s were willing to take him, as they just acquired Brett Wallace to be their first baseman of the future, and Overbay is just in his way. As a one year fill-in who didn’t cost much, he could help the team score some runs and not be a big obstacle if the Padres put Gonzalez on the market in July. The price has to be right, though, and that depends on Toronto’s desire to move him.

Luke Scott, Baltimore

Scott, we’ve talked about. An outfielder who is willing to transition to first base and could probably be acquired for the right price, he’s arbitration eligible and will make around $4 million in 2010. Lefty with power and patience who strikes out a bit, he’s similar in total value to Overbay, though he also offers the defensive flexibility to be able to play the outfield if need be, and the M’s could keep him past 2010 if he had a good season. Whether those positives outweigh the cost of acquiring him from the Orioles, who would not give him away, is a pretty big factor.

Ryan Doumit, Pittsburgh

Another guy we’ve talked about as a potential fit for the team. He offers a bit more risk and upside than either Overbay or Scott, as he’s young and could catch part-time, giving the M’s the chance to get some offense from behind the plate while offering insurance if either Moore or Johnson are not ready for the start of the season. He’s also a switch-hitter, so from a flexibility standpoint, it would be hard to do better. Lots of downsides, though – he’s coming off a bad season, he’s had wrist injury issues which are known to sap power, and he has next to no experience at first base. He’s also an overly aggressive hitter, which the M’s are in the process of getting away from. That’s a lot of extra risk for the M’s to be taking on, though the upside is there.

He’s under contract for $3.5 million in 2010 and $5 million in 2011, so the contract is right. Pittsburgh would want something useful in return, though, so like Scott, the M’s may decide that they’re better off acquiring a cast-off that won’t cost them any talent and could offer similar production, even if it comes with less flexibility.

Willy Aybar, Tampa Bay

A bit of a personal favorite, he’d be an upside play, kind of in the mold of what the M’s did with Gutierrez and Aardsma a year ago. A switch hitter with gap power and good contact skills, he has the tools to be an above average hitter, but the results haven’t been there the last two years due to low BABIPs. Some players really are true talent .270 BABIP guys, but we’re still dealing with a small sample on Aybar, and we shouldn’t conclude that he is just yet.

He’l be 27 next year, and remains on my list of guys who could take a big step forward if given regular playing time. He also has experience at both 3rd and 2nd (though he may getting too large for second base, especially on a team that values defense), offering the positional flexibility that the team likes. In a lot of ways, he’s a really good fit for the roster.

Unfortunately, he plays for Tampa Bay, and they are the hardest team in the league to trade with. They value their young, cost-controlled players and are reluctant to make any deal that is not a heist for their franchise. They know that Aybar has some upside, and given his team friendly contract, they’re not likely to part with him unless they get something back that they like even more.

James Loney, Los Angeles

The gap between what Loney has been and could be is pretty large. He has tremendous contact skills, the kind of swing and frame that should generate power, and the athleticism of a guy who could be a really good defender at first base. Heading into his age 26 season, though, he has yet to translate the skills into performance.

His lack of power is the real problem at the moment. His ISO was just .118 last year, simply not good enough from a non-premium defender at the position. He has more juice in his bat, as he’s shown in the minors and in his 2007 season, but the power can only be hoped for, not expected. Despite the athleticism, his UZR is below average in nearly 4,000 innings at first base. And the walks don’t make up for the rest of the package.

The Dodgers are unlikely to give up on him so soon, so he won’t be easy to acquire. And yet, he just hasn’t produced at a level where the M’s should be comfortable paying a premium to acquire him in lieu of other available options. The upside makes him interesting, but the cost to acquire probably eliminates him from discussion.

Mat Gamel, Milwaukee

In some ways, Gamel makes a lot of sense. Jack drafted him in Milwaukee, so there’s not much of a question over whether they like what he brings to the table. A 23-year-old lefty who pounds the ball all over the field and draws a bunch of walks is certainly appealing to the M’s, and he’s basically major league ready. Rather than serving as a short term solution, he could help the team win in 2010 and beyond.

There are problems, though. He’s not good defensively, and probably won’t be anywhere. He lacks the physical abilities to be a quality glove guy. He also strikes out an awful lot and doesn’t have the power of a guy like Branyan, so you have to live with a bit lower average without getting the 35 homers. The doubles and walks make him a good hitter, but given his defensive issues, he’s not going to be a star unless he’s a great hitter. And, while Milwaukee probably would trade him if they got the right return, his price tag will be high.

He probably won’t outproduce the veteran options for 2010, so acquiring Gamel would be a move for the future. But if it takes a big part of the future to get him, is the team really better off? A Morrow-Gamel deal has been discussed, but it seems like neither team is really pushing for it. The M’s may be better off just getting a player who can produce in 2010 and worry about the future later.

Via Free Agency:

Adam LaRoche

Everything I said about Overbay is true about LaRoche. They’re very similar players. LaRoche has a tad more power, though he’s spent his career in the National League, so you have to adjust his numbers down a bit. He’s a good but not great hitter and an okay defender, and the overall package makes him about league average. The problem, though, is that his strong finish to the 2009 season has deluded him into thinking he’s worth significant money. Rumors have him asking for 3 years and $30 million. Anything more than 1/7 is an overpay in this market, so he’s probably out unless his agent can talk some sense into him.

Russ Branyan

As I mentioned the other day, the M’s already have enough health risks, and they may not want to compound that by bringing Branyan back and counting on him to play the field. His power makes him a good player when he’s healthy, but whether he’ll be able to play well or often is a real question. Even at a discount, the M’s might now be best suited going for a lesser player with a healthier profile.

Carlos Delgado

See Russ Branyan, just replace the herniated disc with knee problems and the fact that he’s almost 40.

Ryan Garko

The right-handed version of Overbay. He’s a decent enough player, but he’s better off somewhere else.

Eric Hinske

A useful platoon hitter who is a better defender than he’s usually given credit for, but the M’s aren’t going to run a platoon at first base, and Hinske isn’t that much better than Mike Carp. Probably not a real option.

Hank Blalock

He’s just not very good, and offers way too much risk with not enough reward.

Internal Candidates

Mike Carp

His strong performance in limited time in Seattle has probably inflated his actual value in the eyes of some fans. As a player, he’s similar to Overbay, just with less power and worse defense. He has good plate discipline, but lacks the power to be a really good hitter, and his contact skills are just fine, not exceptional. For this player type to work, you generally have to have excellent bat control and be terrific in the field, ala John Olerud or Mark Grace. Carp is not that kind of defender or contact hitter, leaving him shy of the major league skills needed to be a quality major league starter. He’s probably a +0 to +1 win player for 2010, and the upside is limited. He’d be cheap, but the team could do better.

Jose Lopez

This probably deserves it’s own post, but no, the team should not move Lopez to first base. He’s not so bad defensively that he’s killing the team at second, nor is he so good offensively that the team should be willing to make the move to keep his bat in the line-up. He’d probably be a decent defender relative to the average first baseman, but offensively, he’d be among the worst in the league. If you don’t want him playing second base, then you don’t want him on the team. And maybe you don’t, but this is a terrible market in which to try to trade a second baseman, and he has value at his production/cost level, so giving him away is pretty foolish. In reality, the M’s best option is probably to let him keep the spot warm for Dustin Ackley, hope he has a big year, and try to trade him again next winter.

Morning crow

December 19, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 22 Comments 

I made some catty comments w/r/t Griffey pushing out Langerhans, who the M’s just re-signed and appear to be intent on using in exactly the role I was complaining he’d be well-suited for. Sorry folks! I don’t know why they non-tendered him and then came back, and I kind of suspect the M’s are taking dares now (“Can’t keep Milton Bradley productive, huh? We’ll show you…”), but there it is: no mockery deserved.

Mmm, mmm, delicious.

Current depth chart for your 2010 M’s

December 19, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 43 Comments 

I swear they’re making moves based on what people last said they wouldn’t do, and when I posted last. So here’s this getting a little more complicated.

SP-R Felix Hernandez
SP-L Cliff Lee. That’s not a typo. They really traded for Cliff Lee.
SP-L Ryan Rowland-Smith
SP-R Brandon Morrow
(one of:
SP-R Ian Snell
SP-R Doug Fister
SP-R Yusmeiro Petit)

RP-R David Aardsma
RP-R Mark Lowe
RP-R Shawn Kelley
RP-R Sean White
RP-L Jason Vargas
RP-L Garrett Olson
RP-L Luke French (?)
RP-R Kanekoa Texeira

Position players
C-R Rob Johnson
C-R Adam Moore
1B-L Mike Carp
2B-R Jose Lopez
SS-R Jack Wilson
3B-B Chone Figgins
LF-L Michael Saunders
CF-R Franklin Gutierrez
RF-L Ichiro!
DH-L Ken Griffey Jr.
DH/LF-B Milton Bradley
UT-R Bill Hall (IF/OF-R?)
IF-L Jack Hannahan
OF-L Ryan Langerhans

As Dave notes, that’s likely to have Saunders dropping. But the team hasn’t said anything yet, so…

Plus we know there’s another shoe to drop. It’s not going to be Bay, because they’ve been tied to Bay. What’s the least-predicted storyline? Even Randy Johnson-Chuck Armstrong reconciliation’s been thought of. Red Sox accidentally throw Kevin Youklis into a swap of minor leaguers after Zduriencik uses his hypnogaze? They’re first on an Astros salary purge, picking up Berkman? Funny joke, right, but they just snagged Cliff Lee. Cliff Lee is a Mariner. Why not dream of Pujols?

Bradley and Branyan

December 18, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 76 Comments 

I think there is one wrinkle to the Milton Bradley acquisition that has not been discussed much, and that is how the presence of a player with Bradley’s health history affects what the team will do at first base, specifically with regards to Russ Branyan.

Bradley’s risks do not just end with his personality. He has had 500 plate appearances in a season twice in his career, and he’s only played in more than 130 games once. Thanks to the great injury tool, we can see that, in the last five years, Bradley has spent 188 days on the 15 day DL, 49 days on the 60 day DL, and been labeled day-to-day on 96 different days. He has had problems with his knee, hip, thigh, lower leg, groin, “general medical”, back, wrist, forearm, shoulder, trunk, ankle, hand, abdomen, and even his face.

The man gets hurt an awful lot. He makes up for it by playing well when he’s on the field, but it is going to be a fairly common occurrence that he’s not available to play. And that reality is going to make it hard for the M’s to also have a guy like Russ Branyan as their starting first baseman.

We already have an infielder with a history of injury problems in Jack Wilson, and we just acquired an OF/DH with an even more extensive series of health problems. As we saw last year, Junior’s knees will keep him off the field fairly regularly as well. Over a 162 game season, there’s a good chance that there are going to be days when all three of those guys are just not available due to various tweaks and pulls.

If you add Branyan to the mix, now you have four guys who you can’t really count on, health wise, to play everyday. A herniated disc is no joke, and even if he rehabs well and puts in a ton of work, there are going to be days when he just can’t go. And if that happens on the same day that Jack Wilson’s hamstring is bothering him and Milton Bradley’s (insert any body part here) is ailing, then what? Hannahan’s playing short, Hall goes to left, and Langerhans plays first, while Jr is the DH? Better hope the opponents aren’t throwing a southpaw that day. And if Junior’s knees are bothering him as well, well, apparently Rob Johnson would be your DH and you just play without a bench.

This might sound implausible, and it wouldn’t happen more than a couple of times all year, but the team would be playing with a short bench almost the entire year. On any given day, you would almost expect that one of Bradley/Griffey/Wilson/Branyan would be unavailable for one reason or another. That really limits Wak’s options at the end game. You have to think that there are going to be numerous occasions where Wak is going to want to pinch-hit for Jack Wilson in high leverage, late game situations, but he may be very hesitant to do that if Hannahan was starting at first base and Branyan wasn’t available to go into the game.

Also, you’re likely to see Langerhans used as a defensive replacement for Bradley quite a bit (both to improve the defense and just keep Milton healthy), so if he’s being reserved for that role and the team has another guy on the bench who can’t go that day, they will not be able to pinch run without significant risk.

In the end, I think three 30+ guys with a lot of nagging health problems is probably enough. I don’t know that the Mariners are going to want their #3 and #4 hitters to both be needing frequent rest days as they try to win the AL West. The addition of Bradley makes bringing Branyan back a little less palatable.

I’m certain the M’s have already had this discussion and are aware of this. Perhaps they already know that Russ isn’t coming back, and that he has a two year offer from a team that we haven’t heard about yet. But even if that’s not true, I think this acquisition lowers the value that Branyan can offer the Mariners in relation to someone who is a bit more reliable from a health standpoint.

I could be wrong, but to me, the Bradley acquisition means that we probably won’t see The Muscle back in Seattle next year.

Roster Almost Set

December 18, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 112 Comments 

Today’s dual moves of trading for Milton Bradley and re-signing Ryan Langerhans to a major league contract seem to go together. And, they would apparently point to Michael Saunders probably beginning 2010 somewhere besides Seattle – likely Tacoma, but Jack is known to be pursuing a trade involving some big pieces, and this could be the precursor to that kind of deal. Here’s why this leads me down that path.

The M’s did not acquire Bradley to just DH. He’s an average-ish defensive left fielder, which is part of the appeal to the team. They had no interest in another DH-only type of player with Griffey on the roster. And, whether he deserves it or not, Griffey is going to play more than once a month – I’ve got him penciled in for 200 to 250 at-bats at DH, which is basically playing every couple of days or so. By acquiring a guy who can play both LF and DH, the M’s have essentially created a rotating LF/DH platoon between Bradley, Griffey, Langerhans, and Hall.

On some days, we’ll see Bradley in left and Griffey at DH. On other days, it will be Langerhans in left and Bradley at DH. Against a LH pitcher, I think you’ll see Hall in left and Bradley at DH on most days. None of the four will be counted on to be full-time players, which they are not capable of being, but they will be allowed to share two jobs when the match-ups are in their favor.

Saunders just isn’t as good of a fit for this kind of role as Langerhans is. He needs to play regularly, not spend half his days sitting on the bench and coming in a as a late inning defensive replacement. The portion of the LF job share that he would be up for is probably only in line for 250-300 at-bats, which is not enough for a kid who still has stuff to work on. But it’s perfect for Langerhans, who is a quality role player but not good enough to play everyday.

Given Bradley’s role here, I think Saunders probably begins the year in Tacoma. And that’s fine – Bradley is a good enough player where that kind of move makes sense, given the team’s go-for-it approach to 2010. Whether he ends up joining the team at some point in the summer or gets shipped off at the deadline as a piece in a blockbuster trade remains to be seen. The nice thing about today’s moves is that it gives the Mariners the option to do either.

Silva-Bradley Swap Near?

December 18, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 60 Comments 

Larry Stone reports that the M’s may announce a Carlos Silva-Milton Bradley trade as soon as today. This deal has been talked about for a while, because of the matching salaries and the M’s need for a hitter, but the organization had made it clear to a bunch of people that they had no interest in Bradley. That makes this a pretty big surprise, honestly.

If it goes through, there are basically two reactions that we have to reconcile.

1. Milton Bradley is a significantly better player than Carlos Silva, and a much more obvious fit for what this team needs. In terms of production, the M’s just got a lot better. A switch-hitting, high OBP LF/DH is exactly the kind of player that this roster is calling for. And the price is obviously right.

2. Milton Bradley is the exact opposite of the kind of person the organization has spent the last year bringing in. He’s as far removed from Mike Sweeney as you can get. But, the Mariners never promised to have 25 choir boys on the team, and perhaps they feel that the culture that they’ve already created will allow Bradley to have another lower-maintenance season, like he did in 2008. Remember, Wak is good friends with Ron Washington, who was able to get a good full season out of Bradley in 2008.

From the how-will-he-fit-into-the-clubhouse angle, I think we all just really have to defer to Wak on this one. If he thinks he can get through to Bradley and keep him from causing significant problems, then I’m not going to say that he can’t. Very few managers have been able to, but Wak is a very impressive leader of people.

Remember, we’re not just talking about a guy whose a little prickly here. This is a dude who wore a t-shirt saying “F*** Eric Wedge” in the clubhouse when played for the Indians. He’s worn out his welcome everywhere he has been for a reason. This isn’t the kind of “clubhouse chemistry” argument where there’s little evidence that the off-field stuff matters. With Bradley, it matters a lot. He’s a constant threat of getting ejected in any given game, and a suspension is always possible. He fights with umpires, fans, teammates, coaches… odds are decent that he’s going to be offended by the Mariner Moose at some point. It affects his ability to stay on the field and produce, so this is not a small personality flaw that can be dismissed as unimportant.

But the M’s are apparently willing to take that risk. Given that Silva’s money was essentially a sunk cost, they can hold the power to just release Bradley outright without coming out of this deal looking like they got hosed. Perhaps that kind of leverage gives them confidence that they can take a chance on the guy.

If they’re right, the M’s just added a couple more wins to their roster. From a talent perspective, Bradley is perfect for the M’s. This all hinges on how well he and Wak can get along.

M’s Re-Sign Langerhans

December 18, 2009 · Filed Under Mariners · 27 Comments 

Good news – Langerhans is back. The M’s gave him a major league deal to keep him from going somewhere else, so he’s back in the fold. It’s interesting that this is a major league contract, but my guess is it is for not much more than the league minimum.

As much as I like Langerhans, I’m still not sure I see him on the opening day roster. As we’ve laid out, the team has two open roster spots if they go with a 12 man pitching staff. I can’t see Langerhans getting one of those two spots, given how the roster is currently constructed. But, things can change, and the M’s have just given themselves some more depth, which is never a bad thing

« Previous PageNext Page »