M’s Trade Trayvon Robinson for Robert Andino
Well, that didn’t take long. A few hours after I said to expect a trade of Trayvon Robinson or Mike Carp, the Mariners shipped Robinson to Baltimore for infielder Robert Andino. Acquiring Andino doesn’t help them with their roster decisions today, but he can fill the utility infielder/backup SS spot on the roster, and could actually be okay in that role.
He was pretty lousy for the Orioles last year, but overall, his career numbers suggest that he’s a decent enough reserve infielder. He’s a career .235/.296/.323 hitter, which isn’t great, but he can actually play shortstop, and believe it or not, there aren’t that many big league shortstops who can post a .300 OBP anymore. For instance, last year, the Mariners gave this roster spot to Munenori Kawasaki, and you probably don’t need a reminder as to how dreadful he was.
Overall, his total package has been worth +1 WAR in 1,400 career plate appearances, so he’s marginally better than the kind of guy you’d expect to grab on waivers. He’s arbitration eligible for a second time, but given his lousy 2012 season, he won’t get much of a raise, and will probably make $1.5 to $2.0 million in salary next year. He’s not any kind of long term solution or a huge upgrade, but he’ll make the team a little bit better on days when Brendan Ryan can’t go than they were last year.
Robinson going away isn’t any kind of loss. He simply doesn’t have the kind of skillset that works in the big leagues. Low contact/low power is a bad recipe for offensive success, and Robinson’s putrid throwing arm limited to left field, so he wasn’t even capable of defending multiple positions or playing an up-the-middle spot. He’s a fifth outfielder at best, and the Mariners shouldn’t have had any interest in trying to squeeze him onto the roster this spring. Since he was out of options, they were eventually just going to pass him through waivers, so this way, they turn him into something that might be marginally useful instead.
It’s basically a lateral move, but it’s a lateral move that gives them a Major League backup SS, which they didn’t have previously. Call it the smallest of small victories.