Smoak Going to Tacoma

Dave · July 23, 2012 at 10:17 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

The Mariners just announced that Justin Smoak has been optioned to Triple-A Tacoma, so Mike Carp’s activation from the DL won’t fill Ichiro’s open roster spot as had been assumed. The team will call up another outfielder to fill the hole created by today’s trade, and my guess is that it’s probably going to be Darren Ford. There aren’t really any players in Tacoma deserving of a promotion, and Ford can serve as a fourth outfielder type until Franklin Gutierrez is healthy enough to return. In other words, prepare to see a lot of Carlos Peguero over the next couple of weeks.

As we talked about this morning, this is the right call. Smoak is just lost at the plate right now, and if there’s any chance of turning him into a decent player again, he needs a break from being embarrassed in the big leagues on a nightly basis. Whether he’s actually fixable or not remains to be seen, but he needs a break from the Major Leagues for a while.


24 Responses to “Smoak Going to Tacoma”

  1. Paul L on July 23rd, 2012 10:30 pm

    So to summarize:
    – the major league roster is full of struggling, mostly mediocre players, and has the seventh-worst record in baseball

    – “There aren’t really any players in Tacoma deserving of a promotion”

    – AA is mostly about the pitching staff, and maybe Franklin (am I missing someone obvious?)

    When will we be good? 2017?

  2. Westside guy on July 23rd, 2012 10:34 pm

    I sincerely hope Justin Smoak can figure out his swing issues and get back to being the guy some of us thought he was when he first arrived.

    Hmm… did anyone understand that sentence I just typed? 😉

    Anyway, good luck Justin – I hope we see you raking* in Seattle soon!

    *As a player, I mean. Not as a member of the grounds crew – that would suck.

  3. Johnny Slick on July 23rd, 2012 10:39 pm

    Wow, I’m somewhat amazed. Now all they need to do is cut Chone and everything will be in its proper order.

  4. CCW on July 23rd, 2012 10:53 pm

    This is a great day in Mariner Nation, and I say that as a huge fan of Ichiro. Really the perfect move for him and for us, and I look forward to lots of Ichiro highlight revisiting in years to come. His bows this evening were awesome. And Smoak has needed to go for a long time. I’ve never disliked Smoak through his struggles (contrast with Figgins, who I have grown to loathe). I really hope he can turn it around, for his own sake and of course for the M’s.

  5. terryoftacoma on July 23rd, 2012 11:31 pm

    Ford’s not on the 40 man roster. We’d have to drop someone for him to come up.

  6. Flaco on July 24th, 2012 12:17 am

    @Johnny Slick. How is everything in proper order? There is nothing proper about this organization and there is no order. Next logical move is to trade Felix. We’ve all heard/read about it. Give the kid a chance to win somewhere else, and hopefully give us a few worthy players in exchange.

  7. stevemotivateir on July 24th, 2012 12:20 am


    Franklin’s been at AAA for a while, but the obvious name you’re missing, is Romero.

  8. Johnny Slick on July 24th, 2012 12:36 am

    Wow, somebody’s being a Debbie Downer!

  9. heychuck01 on July 24th, 2012 12:37 am

    “Ford’s not on the 40 man roster. We’d have to drop someone for him to come up.”

    uhh… Ichiro?

  10. henryv on July 24th, 2012 12:43 am

    Only about 60 games left to go… Only about 60 games left to go… Only about 60 games left to go…

    And 13 or so Felix starts, so only 47 horrible abominations that try to impersonate baseball games.

  11. BackRub on July 24th, 2012 1:28 am

    Mitchell took Ichiro’s spot on 40 man roster. Tough call for who is more deserving to be dropped from the 40 man- Medina or Robles. I would like to see Ford called up as well- a longshot to be of much value but he’s put up some interesting offensive numbers so far in AAA to go along with his (probably) good defense.

  12. Kyle Miller on July 24th, 2012 3:08 am

    To take Ichiro’s 25 man-spot……..what are everyone’s thoughts? Darren Ford? Luis Rodriguez? Alex Liddi? (gulp) Trayvon Robinson? Does Z have something in the works that we don’t know about for that spot (ie a player in a trade for someone like Vargas, Millwood, ect)?

    I’m really just fishing here.

  13. Paul B on July 24th, 2012 6:47 am

    My first thought was Mike Wilson. But he went through waivers and isn’t on the 40 man, is he?

  14. Rainiers_fan on July 24th, 2012 6:49 am

    I like the move. I think it’s a good place for him to work some things out. Dave is right, sadly no one at Tacoma is really deserving except Ford. Too bad Carp isn’t hitting, if he was it would be a nice solution. It’s painful to watch him right now, he looks really lost at the plate. I honestly don’t remember the last time I saw him really tag a ball.

  15. argh on July 24th, 2012 6:58 am

    Is Guti the unluckiest player in baseball or is he hopelessly fragile? Not that it matters much by this point.

  16. vetted_coach on July 24th, 2012 8:26 am

    Just catching up – on vacation in Italy. Casper Wells is your new RF, Wedge, so get with the program and stop embarrassing yourself. I know your head hurts. Deal.

  17. californiamariner on July 24th, 2012 1:05 pm

    One potentially positive thing I haven’t seen anyone mention yet… Montero might get a chance to play a little 1B finally. I still think he has to be a C/1B/DH in the future for the Mariners to get the most out of him.

  18. Rainiers_fan on July 24th, 2012 1:29 pm

    Just being clear about my earlier post, Carp looks lost at the plate right now in Tacoma. I see him bat a few games a week and he reminds me of Smoak out there right now. The difference is Carp is struggling against AAA pitchers. He just doesn’t hit the ball with the same authority he did down here last year. I agree Smoak should be down in Tacoma but I worry that Carp will have similar issues on a bigger stage.

  19. terryoftacoma on July 24th, 2012 2:05 pm

    Robinson is the outfielder added to the 25 man.

  20. Bremerton guy on July 24th, 2012 4:41 pm

    This is disappointing. The season is effectively lost. I’d like to see if Luis Jiminez can hit big league pitching. (He doesn’t seem to be hindered by a marine layer down at Cheney.)

  21. stevemotivateir on July 24th, 2012 6:18 pm

    @vetted coach

    Wells will be the right fielder. Peguero isn’t going to steal too many games from him. At least I hope not.

  22. stevemotivateir on July 24th, 2012 6:21 pm

    I heard the news on Robinson earlier, Terry. I don’t get it. Robinson has nothing to offer, but bad defense, and a whole lotta strike-outs. Ford would have made more sense to me. Clearing a spot on the 40 man wouldn’t have been that tough.

  23. deflep78 on July 25th, 2012 8:24 am

    I really think Jack Z needs to cut bait with Smoak. The main target should be Matt Adams of the Cardinals. You might be able to pry him away with a package of Smoak and League or Smoak and Vargas. Seems like a lot to give up, but this Smoak could actually be the incentive to make the trade. Cardinals would get the pitching they need and could fill their AAA 1b spot and try and fix Smoak.

    Adams is a LH beast. Do it Z.

  24. eponymous coward on July 25th, 2012 12:27 pm

    Yes, trading a busted 1B prospect plus a 2 month rental of a failed closer is QUITE the attractive package for a 23 year old 1B with a .900+ minor league OPS.

    (Incidentally, Adams has much more impressive minor league stats than Smoak had at the same age. QED he’s a better player. See, THOSE are the kinds of stats you want to see from a minor league 1B who you think will turn into an impressive hitter. Not Smoak’s.)

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