Smoak Going to Tacoma
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.