The Default Option

November 16, 2007 · Filed Under Mariners · 139 Comments 

What happens if nothing happens this off-season? No, really, let’s say the M’s make no moves at all. None. They wake up the day before spring training, slap themselves on the collective forehead, hand out NRIs to anyone walking by, and head into the season. How bad are things, really? Or, to put this another way, what’s the baseline?

C: Johjima/Burke
1B: Sexson! WOOHOO!
2B: Lopez
SS: Betancourt
3B: Beltre
LF: Ibanez
CF: Ichiro!
RF: Jones
DH: Vidro

Overall, that’s likely to be a bit of an offensive step back, though we can argue about the why (Sexson rebound versus Vidro regression, Ibanez slide against Lopez progression, Jones’ ability to replace Guillen…). Defensively, you’re going to do better with Jones over Guillen, but then Ibanez isn’t getting any faster. So small step forward.


Hey, it’s just like last year! Wheeeee! There’s a chance Morrow’s ready for one of those slots, if a small slot, but really, the team would be picking from the Baek & Co. Assortment Pack of Back-Rotation, Low-Cost guys.

Amazingly, this would not be an appreciable step back from last year.

Putz & a ton of dudes

I have every confidence they can put together a quality bullpen without spending on some veterans with longer resumes than Sean Green.

Where do they finish? That’s a 75-80 win team, and just scanning it over, though, it doesn’t inspire a lot of hope.

However, you can see where if they want to make improvements, the places where they really need help are quite obvious. Here’s the question, then — will the M’s, spending a ton of money this off-season and likely making moves, manage to improve on the team they’d field if they did nothing? A Sexson move would go a long way to start things in the right direction.