Aaron Laffey –> AAA, Dan Cortes –> Seattle

marc w · July 29, 2011 at 11:53 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Aaron Laffey had a bad game tonight. I mean, *really* bad. And, to make matters worse, the Mariners had company over. The Sonics tried to ignore it, and they changed the subject when they could, but Laffey had a legitimately bad game.

Afterwords, the M’s optioned him to Tacoma and brought up Dan Cortes, who’s been terrible in July (but better in the past week or two). I don’t know; there’s not a whole lot to say about this. Laffey’s not good, and the speculation that he’d get a velocity jump by moving to the pen full-time haven’t been borne out. He’s replacement level, or a bit above. But a move like this just looks odd.

If they demoted a player for having a bad game, the M’s wouldn’t have anyone left. If they brought someone up for a hot week in AAA, the M’s would’ve recalled Peguero, Mike Wilson and they would’ve brought Alex Liddi and Johan Limonta up in May. I don’t know what was said in the dugout, and I have to assume that something beyond “Laffey didn’t have his best stuff” is at work here, but the move just doesn’t make a lot of sense. I know they’re moving vets out to see if some of the younger guys can step up, but Laffey is 26.

Laffey isn’t a great pitcher, so it ultimately means nothing. But what would you say is the rationale here? What’s the process that drives a move like this? I like Dan Cortes, and if the rationale is something as simple as “we need to get Cortes working with Jaime Navarro again” then I can sort of see it. But at least initially, this is head scratcher.


25 Responses to “Aaron Laffey –> AAA, Dan Cortes –> Seattle”

  1. SonOfZavaras on July 30th, 2011 12:43 am

    Just a thought…but maybe they intend to put Bedard in the pen if he’s not traded? To get arm strength back?

    Otherwise, I’m not really understanding the logistics of the move.

  2. SonOfZavaras on July 30th, 2011 5:53 am

    Actually, strike that comment down. Silly. Bedard’s arm strength isn’t any issue, maybe just starting stamina- but working out of the pen doesn’t help that.

    Nah, I don’t really have a workable thought on why they’d do this. It’s not like Cortes has been screaming for an audition.

  3. wabbles on July 30th, 2011 6:36 am

    It’s random deck chair shuffling that doesn’t mean a whole lot.

  4. Adam B. on July 30th, 2011 7:40 am

    Could the move be related to the upcoming Fister for Furbush trade? (Snicker)

    That seems to be the only reason with any rational.

  5. Adam S on July 30th, 2011 8:18 am

    Shuffling to get a fresh arm in the pen?

  6. lalo on July 30th, 2011 8:21 am

    I don´t like the trade, a reliever and a 4th OF for two very good pitchers with team control for years

  7. dnc on July 30th, 2011 8:22 am

    Agreed lelo, don’t like the trade at all. That third piece better be something great, but somehow I don’t think that it is.

  8. lalo on July 30th, 2011 8:26 am

    Agreed lelo, don’t like the trade at all. That third piece better be something great, but somehow I don’t think that it is.

    The third piece should be Nick Castellanos…

  9. lalo on July 30th, 2011 8:28 am

    Francisco Martinez is in the deal!!!!! Top prospect alert!!!

  10. lalo on July 30th, 2011 8:35 am

    Francisco Martinez scouting report

    “True five-tool talent with tremendous raw ability and quickly advancing baseball instincts. Has potential to be a smooth defender with a cannon arm, as well as a premium offensive player with power, patience, and speed.”

  11. msk0230 on July 30th, 2011 8:38 am

    The worst part about Laffey is that he has to cheat to be this not good. If he makes it back to Seattle or you go watch him in Tacoma (I’m not sure how the field is setup there) when he is warming up he rubs a bunch of “stuff” like sunscreen and about 3 other things I can’t identify on his forearms. If you then notice when he pitches when the umpire puts a new ball in play he takes off his glove and rub his forearms and then on the ball. He is clearly greasing the ball and still just isn’t that good. I have seen him do this routine when watching him warm up in the pen at games about 5 times this year and if you ever pay attention this is always his routine on the mound.

  12. dnc on July 30th, 2011 8:52 am

    Martinez doesn’t make me love the deal (sounds like the 3B version of Triunfel), but he definitely keeps me from hating it. There’s supposed to be a potentially interesting PTBNL too.

  13. G-Man on July 30th, 2011 9:46 am

    Fister AND Pauley for these guys? Those are two cheap and effective pitchers with years of club control ahead.

    The Triunfel analogy seems apt to me, but then I am always suspicious of any prospect who’s less than Ackleyesque. Wells doesn’t sound any better than Halman, not the lefty better than Laffey.

    That said, I’d be delighted to be wrong. I’ll hope for the PTBNL being good and one of the other three to exceed my expectations.

  14. Dustbust on July 30th, 2011 10:01 am

    Martinez’ ETA: 2014!? What are we doing? I hope I’m reading the wrong scoring reports. Fister was under team control for a few more years, and he was exactly the type of player you want in the clubhouse! If you’re trading a piece like that at least get MLB ALMOST-ready talent.

    I can completely understand building for the future, but let’s not make this a 10 year plan, ok?

    …and damn you, Bedard!! He coud’ve finally made amends with Seattle by pitching a good game. Now his stock went it the window, and we had to trade Fister.

  15. henryv on July 30th, 2011 10:07 am

    Isn’t this a move to keep a bullpen in terrible shape capable of pitching if we do trade a starter or two?

    Seems like with the bullpen pitching 7 innings last night, you’re going to end up with needing a lot of innings out of them, and so you’ve got to do something…

  16. jordan on July 30th, 2011 10:53 am

    Supposedly the 4th player that hasn’t been named is the centerpiece.

  17. djw on July 30th, 2011 10:55 am

    Wells doesn’t sound any better than Halman,

    Huh? While I’m far from persuaded that Wells is anything special, he appears to be a solidly above replacement major league baseball player. This makes him very, very different from Halman, who obviously is not, and realistically probably never will be.

    This is a lot more important than superficial similarities like “good defensive outfielder with high K rates”.

  18. Sports on a Schtick on July 30th, 2011 11:17 am

    The PTBNL has to be named by August 20th. Decent chance either Nick Castellanos, Chance Ruffin or Drew Smyly will be the fourth piece. None of them are eligible to be traded until August 17th.

  19. pgreyy on July 30th, 2011 11:46 am

    Well, I’ll miss Fister. I remember seeing him in a Rainiers game that FSN broadcast a couple of years ago…he was very efficient and I asked about him here. I was told that he was a poor man’s Washburn. I think that’s about right…but probably what we needed.

    Shame we never got him the run support he deserved, but you can say that about every M’s starter.

    One thing that I think these moves suggest is that the front office is now convinced that our run as an AL West contender this year was a fluke and that they felt they couldn’t expect our pitching staff to perform above their skill level consistently.

    During our run, we depended on Fister’s deep starts, and Laffey & Pauley being lights out from the pen. During our slide, we’ve seen more Ray, Gray & Wright.

    And when you’ve got a whole lot of nothing anybody wants, you’ve got to give up some of what you’d like to keep if you want to get something from somebody else. That’s my read.

    I also imagine we’re not done seeing moves, as Trader Jack goes down swinging.

  20. rjjunior on July 30th, 2011 11:59 am

    3 of Laffey’s last 4 starts have been stinkers. 14 hits and 9 runs in 6 IP.

  21. Ichirolling51 on July 30th, 2011 12:01 pm

    As for the Fister deal, I would have much rather had Al Albuquerque instead of Furbush, but it is still a decent deal for both parties regardless. Also, we probably have close to the most close-to-big-league-ready pitching of any team in baseball, Paxston, Walker, ect….Nevertheless, Martinez is only 20 and already in AA, and the Tigers’ 4th rated prospect. So I really like this deal. As I see it, the three potential PTBN players are….

    3B Nick Castellanos
    RHP Chance Ruffin
    LHP Drew Smyty

    So the final deal will look like this

    Tigers get:

    Doug Fister
    David Pauley

    Mariners get:

    Charlie Furbush
    Casper Wells
    Francisco Martinez
    Nick Castellanos or Chance Ruffin or Drew Smyty

    Not too shabby is you ask me.

  22. SadPanda on July 30th, 2011 12:09 pm

    Damn I really liked Fister and Pauley. Two classy guys. Shame Doug couldn’t more run support. We had a really good core of starters but without any offense it was just a waste.

    Hopefully this trade works out for the M’s in the long run. Why couldn’t Bedard pitch a shutout yesterday? For what we lost to get him he could of returned the favor and pitched one decent game when it mattered. Probably be on the DL in a week.

  23. gwangung on July 30th, 2011 12:43 pm

    With Martinez, I really don’t expect Castellanos as the PTBNL. Still might be someone else…

  24. dnc on July 30th, 2011 12:44 pm

    Supposedly the 4th player that hasn’t been named is the centerpiece.

    Ummm, who is supposing that?

  25. regnaD kciN on July 30th, 2011 9:36 pm

    Martinez’ ETA: 2014!? What are we doing?

    Oh, don’t worry! I’m sure we’ll bring him up too soon and destroy his confidence. But look on the bright side — in a year or two, we’ll be so busy complaining about him we’ll have forgotten completely about Smoak.

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