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Geoff Baker covers the Mariners for The Seattle Times. He provides daily coverage of the team throughout spring training, and during the season.

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July 2, 2008 10:16 AM

Trade destinations

Posted by Geoff Baker

Good morning to you all, especially to Novice in the comments thread. Must be some Fourth of July fireworks going off early at your place in honor of Mr. Bloomquist's game-winning hit last night. And no, I would not put you in the category of a "troll" either. If all trolls were as simple to deal with as you, I wouldn't be keeping the Tylenol folks in business. Thanks to all the lawyers who came out yesterday and offered some insights on the Shawn Chacon-Ed Wade situation. Enjoyed reading your takes.

So, Richie Sexson hits his first home run since May 24. I'm sure the phone lines are burning up at the Pelekoudas residence. Or, maybe not. Here's one national writer's take on what's happened to the M's this season. Interesting to read what the rest of the world thinks about you. That outside viewpoint comes into play come trading time. And there are some places shaping up as possible destinations for Mariners players. They are also places the M's can safely deposit those players without having to worry about being burned by them too often in the near future.

There are problems in Philadelphia, where the Phillies looked like they might have a shot at a World Series not too long ago. Well, now, after weeks of losing, the Phils just unloaded big-ticket starting pitcher Brett Myers to Class AAA.

The Phils need another arm. If they can't trade for C.C. Sabathia, you'd have to think that Erik Bedard would be an interesting fallback plan. Or maybe even Jarrod Washburn, if he continues to pitch well. Washburn has proved adept at handling NL lineups. He's gone at least six innings and not allowed more than two earned runs in any of his three starts against NL clubs so far. Also went six innings and allowed only one earned run against Toronto -- an AL club that hits like an NL team -- his last time out. We'll see what he does tonight. Unlike Bedard, Washburn won't cost teams an arm and a leg. But dealing him would get the M's out from under the $13 million or so that he's still owed through 2009.


The Boston Red Sox are struggling at the plate and at the catching position. Seattle has three catchers. One of them, Jamie Burke, can catch a knuckleballer like Tim Wakefield and likely provide more offense than Kevin Cash. Another, Kenji Johjima, can catch every day and is under contract for three more years. Jason Varitek is not. Could there be a fit here? Remember, too, the Red Sox have made a sizeable investment in Dice-K Matsuzaka and stepped up their marketing efforts to the Japanese community. I also think the Red Sox bullpen could use another left hander. Arthur Rhodes could fit that bill, though he might have to pitch at Yankee Stadium in a pennant race. Oh, well. Speaking of the Japanese community, this could be a decent spot for Ichiro to land as well. Not in center, where Jacoby Ellsbury is making his mark. But in right field. Remember, the Red Sox get above average power from Manny Ramirez in left. Imagine the 1-2 speed punch at the top of the order with Ellsbury and Ichiro. This type of move, though, could be more of an off-season project than a trade deadline thing.

The knee problems of Yankees left fielder/DH Hideki Matsui contiunue to worry a Yankees squad that appears set to make a run at a wild-card spot after an underwhelming first few months. There could be a fit here with Raul Ibanez, a native New Yorker. Ibanez doesn't have to play left field every day. But he could man the position a couple of days per week and be a DH on other occasions. Yes, the Yankees have a DH type in Jason Giambi. But he can't play left field at all. Renting Ibanez out for a few months to the Yanks also would be unlikely to hamper Seattle's attempts to re-sign Ibanez in the off-season. Happens all the time.

Another team looking like a trade partner with the M's are the surprising Atlanta Braves, still crossing their fingers and praying for some bullpen help. They are 4-21 in one-run games, which tends to reflect on the bullpen. Remember how good the M's looked in tight contests last year because of their bullpen? Well, this is the opposite. These guys need some help in the latter innings. Rhodes could be a fit here. So could a guy like Mark Lowe, or Sean Green. I only throw Lowe's name out there because the drafting of Josh Fields means things are starting to get a little crowded on the eighth and ninth innings fronts for the M's when you look at 2009 and beyond. We still don't know what the plan is for Brandon Morrow. It would obviously take quite a haul for the M's to give up on Lowe so soon. But like they said, everyone is up for grabs. If that's true, it means everyone.

Here's another interesting situation developing in Tampa Bay. I think it's still too early for the Rays to hit the panic button. But Troy Percival is an old guy. We'll see how long it takes for him to come back from his hamstring injury and whether or not it lingers throughout the season. The Rays may be looking to add some bullpen depth later on down the road. Seattle has plenty of that. Don't know whether Rhodes would be a good fit here, as the Rays already have two quality lefties in Trever Miller and J.P. Howell. But if everyone gets shoved up a slot, the Rays could use some more middle relief. Take your pick with the M's. Even a guy like Roy Corcoran could have some value on a team desperate for bullpen help, especially of the more "veteran" kind, be it as a major leaguer or minor leaguer. And we all know the Rays have plenty of young prospects to offer up in return. Would probably take more than Corcoran to net a prospect, but you never know.

Obviously, there are other matches and other teams out there. Any of you care to offer up some potential destinations? Things will become much clearer as the trade deadline approaches. Needs will be more firmly established and desperation more evident. Just trying to get the ball rolling here with some names we've already discussed ad nauseum and others just coming up (in my head) for the first time.

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Posted by Adam

10:25 AM, Jul 02, 2008

The Brewers will be looking to add pitching.

The Dodgers need offense (Beltre??).

The D-Backs might want to add a lefty bat (Ibanez??)

The Twins might want more offense (Ibanez?)

The Angels have a big hole at 3B.

I think there are a lot of options and Pelekoudas is right to take his time and get the best value.

Posted by Steven Donegal

10:30 AM, Jul 02, 2008

As interesting as it may be to find homes for our wayward heros, the more interesting question is what can we get in return? Some insight into the prospects each of the teams you mention have that might be available would be useful. The history of this management group with acquiring prospects that actually pan out does not inspire confidence.

Posted by scottM

10:37 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Regarding last night's game: I predicted the M's to win by one run. (It bears repeating, don't you think, and a diploma from the LARRY-STONE-School-of-Sports-Betting)

Regarding the Tampa Bay Rays: when I bought my six game flex pack before the season, I chose opening day with the Rangers (to enjoy the snow). Angels games twice (you know, the team we were going to be in a pennant race with); the Botox first appearance in town (where the Gonzo Blogger ditched me to hang with GEOFF and the boys); the Tigers (tomorrow night––I'm so excited I could pee); and the Tampa Bay Rays ('cuz I KNEW they'd be good, and I definitely want to see them go all the way over the BoTox and Skankees).

I also want to predict that ADAM will be right about the M's ownership change, because, I hate to say it, ADAM was a whole lot closer to being right about the '08 season than I was (or GEOFF, or most of us pro-Bedard trade folks).

Posted by msb

10:40 AM, Jul 02, 2008

just to be pedantic, Ibanez may have been born in NY, but he's lived in Miami since infancy.

Posted by Ben

10:48 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Bedard to the Rays to make them a full fledged super power... we could get a lot of good young guys from them. Then they would have 4 great pitchers.

This - however - will never happen because they want to invest in teh people they already have and it is also a fairly ridiculous idea... but a man can dream.

Posted by scottM

10:50 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Curious. Is Raul Ibanez fluent in Spanish? If so, does he ever interview with the M's Spanish language broadcasters in Spanish? (Or does he have a personal translator on staff for such purposes?)

Posted by Novice

10:50 AM, Jul 02, 2008

lets give props where props are due, Willie Bloomquist played a heck of a game. He's finally getting those starts he deserves and its paying off with his power. Pelekoudas better not jump the gun and trade him at the first good offer he gets just because his stock is sky high.

Posted by Insider

10:53 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Ibanez is fluent in Spanish. He doesnt have a translator because he doesnt need one, he speaks perfect english too.

Posted by Adam

10:57 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Thanks, scottM, but to be fair, I did say the M's were the favorites in the AL West after Lackey and Escobar went down. Yes, I thought the team had serious flaws (offense, defense, bullpen depth), but I didn't think it would ever get this bad.


Re: ownership - I've said it before: Firing Bavasi and Mclaren means little if Howie and Chuck are running the show. I'd love to see Larson as owner and a new face as President.


I'm also starting the "Tony LaCava for GM" Society

http://www.battersbox.ca/article.php?story=20060205195003958

Posted by scottM

10:57 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Thanks Insider. (The translator bit is a not-so-oblique reference to another member of the team who, by now, is fluent in English)

Posted by Adam

10:58 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Posted by Insider

11:04 AM, Jul 02, 2008

i see what you mean. in reality, the only guys on the team who really need a translator are Betancourt and Johjima.

Posted by -j.

11:05 AM, Jul 02, 2008

That CBSSports writer you linked (Miller) wrote an even more intriguing piece on the potential future of the Mariner brass.

http://cbs.sportsline.com/mlb/story/10884085

In a nutshell he's hearing a rumor that Yamauchi wants out of the baseball business and the contract to Kenji was a going away present. Said the baseball people were against it but were overridden.

The best part is the potential of Chris Larson taking over primary ownership and Pat Gillick replacing Chuck and Howie.

If this happens, Mariner fans should literally dance in the streets. The days of an absentee owner and bunch of business men making baseball decisions would seemingly come to an end.

Cross your fingers.

Posted by Samueai I Am Awry

11:06 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Does Erik Bedard speak english? Or just not at all? Maybe we could get him a mime as a translator. "I would go longer than 4 innings if I wasn't trapped in this damn invisible box"

Posted by Brennan

11:15 AM, Jul 02, 2008

If Gillick is truly coming to Seattle next year he should trade us a boatload of prospects for Bedard.
Why not help himself out for when he starts here next year. Free some payroll and set up the team with cheap, young talent. Maybe even Victorino who is Hawaiian and we all know from UW football we have a big following from Hi in this area.

Posted by -j.

11:15 AM, Jul 02, 2008

"lets give props where props are due, Willie Bloomquist played a heck of a game. He's finally getting those starts he deserves and its paying off with his power. Pelekoudas better not jump the gun and trade him at the first good offer he gets just because his stock is sky high."

Please tell me this was meant to be sarcastic. I read it twice and can't pick up on any sarcasm.

#1- NOBODY would trade for Willie Bloomquist.
#2- "Power"? ...er.. WHAT!?
#3- He certainly has done nothing to "deserve" starts.
#4- WFB has no stock. If he ever did, it went TU years ago.

Posted by BrianL

11:20 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Another tidbit from Churchill over at Prospect Insider...

Apparently the Mariners aren't high on trading Adrian Beltre because:

1) They feel they're in a position to compete next season (I agree) and Beltre can be a huge help for that campaign.
2) They feel that they would be selling way low
3) They want to extend Beltre past 2009 because there are no 3B options available within the system or via free agency for the foreseeable future.

As far as the Rays go, I'm not worried. Finding bullpen help is cheap and easy to do, and I'm fairly certain they'll make something happen without dumping too much of their internal talent.

Lastly, concerning a potential ownership change-

I just don't see Yamauchi selling off majority ownership. Not now, anyways. I'm putting this one in the "interesting rumors" pile.

Posted by M Dogg

11:26 AM, Jul 02, 2008

This Gillick/Larson scenario could be interesting. Gillick did an interview on KJR 6/3:
http://www.sportsradio950.com/cc-common/podcast/single_podcast.html?podcast=softy.xml

He talks of "retiring" and moving back to Seattle at the end of this season. hmmmm...

Posted by BrianL

11:34 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Gillick/Larson could represent the best mix of old school traditional evaluation and sabermetric analysis in baseball. At the very least, it would rival what the Red Sox are doing.

I'd love to see it happen, but right now I find it to be nothing more than a very, very interesting rumor.

Posted by Brennan

11:35 AM, Jul 02, 2008

The Gas Man on KJR says he runs into Gillick every couple months in Magnolia where he lives. Sounds like he lives here already, plus the article says he's sold everything he and wife owned in Toronto.

Posted by M Dogg

11:41 AM, Jul 02, 2008

In the interview he says his wife lives here and "loves it" and he is here during the off season. Says his house is near Gastineau and Jamie Moyer and he was once bitten by Gastineau's dog..

Posted by Ben

11:43 AM, Jul 02, 2008

I heard from a person who "knows Chuck Armstrong" that Bedard apparently is such a jerk that his PR people told him to just not say anything at all... the old Thumper from Bambi routine. I wonder if that is true - could Bedard be such a jerk that he just gets told to shut up?

If the rest of teh country sees how much of a pain Bedard is, which it seems like they do by reading that article geoff posted, then would people really want to give up a lot to put a disruptive force in their clubhouse? Especially a high priced one that leaves a game if his back itches.

Posted by Capo

11:46 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Geoff, I think when it comes to the general media....we are hurt by the East Coast bias. ESPN and others give Seattle little to no love when it comes to anything. My point being here that when it comes to valuing players, guys from organizations like Boston, NY, Baltimore, etc always get more respect than their West Coast counterparts.

As to trade partners, the M's face the problem of there basically being a better piece available for every player they have to deal......Eric Bedard has CC Sabathia, Raul Ibanez has Matt Holliday, Adrian Beltre has Garrett Atkins.....my fear is the M's, thinking they can get more, are going to lose out. The same stooges are making the decisions in the FO, so i expect nothing different than we've done the last 20 yrs.

BTW, Boston might make sense for Kenji, but Ichiro? Not a chance.....If you move Manny to DH, where do you move Ortiz? If you put Ichiro in RF, where do you put JD Drew?

I think the Braves, Dodgers, and Rays make the most sense for us as trading partners.

Also, whats the deal with Vidro, does McLovin' know that Vidro has a plate appearance clause in his contract? Does he know that if that option vests, we've basically sunk another $9.5mil into a fat ass singles hitter who cant play defense?

Posted by scrapiron

11:47 AM, Jul 02, 2008

I could find lots of teams interested in our players, and many have been discussed here. What concerns me more is what could we get in return? I don't want to get rid of players just to get rid of them. I want some quality young players in return that fits our "new" team concept. And that's where I get worried.

Do we really want a GM that's never made a trade in his life in charge of the Mariners fire sale? When the new GM comes in for 2009, I'm sure he'll want to build a team his way. What if the players that Pelokoudas got don't fit his plan?

I say let Lee release Sexson and Vidro, and let him trade Ibanez, since we can probably re-sign him in the off season. Don't let him deal anyone else unless there is a huge bidding war at the deadline for your players. In other words, if it isn't a "sell high" opportunity, stick with what you have.

I wish there was a way to hire a new GM now.


Posted by BrianL

11:48 AM, Jul 02, 2008

scrapiron - I'd add "trading Washburn" to that small list of things Lee is authorized to do.

Posted by BrianL

11:49 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Capo -

There's no way Vidro's option vests at this point. He needs something like 600-650 ABs on the season (per Larry Stone) to get his option to vest, and he's not even half-way there.

Posted by chris from Bothell

11:49 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Don't know as I like thinking solely in terms of which teams need bullpen/OF/3B help at all.

How about listing the places that have good prospects at 1b, RF and DH, and that'll tell you where to send people. Let's see the Ms trade from something of a position of strength, rather than bowing and scraping in the direction of any club with a need.

Or put another way, let's see the Ms shop smart, and acting like buyers (of pieces of 09/10/11) rather than sellers (of whatever's salvagable from 06/07/08).

Posted by cesame

11:51 AM, Jul 02, 2008

The M's are in no position to compete next season. Legitimately compete anyways. The current roster will never be anything special.

Blow
It
Up

Posted by scrapiron

11:54 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Ben - There have been lots of surly pitchers to play the game. Steve Carlton and Randy Johnson come to mind, there are lots more. I don't think that would scare anyone off. Heck, the last Roger Clemens contract he'd sit at home and show up on game day only. As long as they pitch well, the clubhouse stuff is secondary.

What DOES scare teams off is the other item you mentioned. Is he a gamer? Teams are deftly afraid of trading for a guy that's never pitched in a pennant race and is already exhibiting signs that he wants out when things aren't going his way. That is driving his value down more than anything.

This off season Bedard's value was driven up by his streak of dominant performances in the second half of 2007. I think the Mariners would be wise to wait and see if Bedard does it again in 2008, then trade him in the offseason when his value is higher. A new GM would also get top dollar for Bedard.

Posted by scrapiron

11:55 AM, Jul 02, 2008

BrianL - agreed. Washburn would be listed as a salary dump and it wouldn't really matter what Lee got in return. That could be on his short "to do" list.

Posted by Top pick in 09 draft

11:55 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Geoff: Any rumblings re. JJ Putz being put on the trade market assuming he's healthy? Morrow looks to be a Papelbon-type closer now that he's gained better control and might be best suited for that role given his health history. Having Morrow go back to a setup role for JJ when/if he returns would be a real waste

Posted by Nat

11:58 AM, Jul 02, 2008

Thanks Adam and -j- for the links. Interesting reading.

Posted by Steve

12:00 PM, Jul 02, 2008

lol, Novice must think its Christmas after last nights game.

Posted by Nelson

12:06 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Why does everyone want Pat Gillick? Sure he had some winning teams for us, but do you not remember the minor league talent he left us with, clint negotte, matt thorton, travis blackley, all this guys were supposed to be a part of our future, and we really needed them because our 2001 team was really old, and this guy did nothing. Pat Gillick left us dry and left us with nothing in the minors. Bavasi had to start from scratch and unfortunately he was unsuccessful.

Also, the real guy we should be trading is JJ Putz. He is over 30, and we have a few guys who could take is spot, someone like morrow, or josh fields or mark lowe. As much as I want to see Morrow start, i dont think he has the stuff to be a starter, and guys lets be real, he is not going to be throwing 99mpb for 5 plus innings, his speed will drop down to around 94 to 95.

I really think Ryan Rowland Smith has a good fastball and a great curveball and i think he is close to becoming a starter. A few more starts and I think he would be ready. And if we hold on to Bedard, because we would be stupid not to, sure the guy is unlikeable, but the guy has had 3 bad outings. Our defense has not been good behind him so he is throwing too many pitches early. But with Felix, Bedard, Rowland Smith, Silva, and the 5th started you pick up via free agency, maybe we could bring freddy garcia back. But i get real excited about our starting 3. I think we can do big things next year.

So what im saying is, trade some small pieces, like washburn, ibanez, johjima, putz, and batista if you can, but other hten that, hold onto beltre and bedard, because we can compete next year with our payroll. It looks like Jeremy Reed is coming in his own, so we will be looking for a first baseman and a DH. We can make a splash for Texeria, Milton Bradley is a free agent, there are a lot of things we can do to compete.

Posted by Ben

12:07 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Bedard was also pretty good in the first half of last year. He has been consistently a very good pitcher over the years - although "injury prone". I don't really think he is injury prone so much as he doesn't play through things.

For all of Felix's immaturity at times (yelling and screaming, attempting to join in on fights, etc) he at least wants to play through everything. i love that about him.

Bedard isn't the pitbull that Clemens is - i think his disruptiveness is different. Clemens was behind his team in the games. Also - Clemens earned the right to be that way, Bedard hasn't.

Anyway, that's my 2 cents.

Also - on another note. I wouldn't necessarily trade Putz to move Morrow in there. Putz is proven and Morrow could be a great starter for us if he can transform his stuff into starter's material. But perhaps the fact that the mariners haven't moved morrow into long relief yet, with the season lost, points to the fact that maybe they'll never move him from the pen...

Posted by Amanda

12:07 PM, Jul 02, 2008

I KNEW Richie would hit a Homer last night, I just felt it... GO RICHIE!!!! Keep Proving them wrong!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by hans

12:11 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Well we know have Amanda, who is probably Sexsons wife, and Novice, who is probably Willie Bloomquist himself.

wow this blog if filled with celebs

Posted by scrapiron

12:11 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Adam - you ever notice that all the "hot" GM names like LaCava, Forst and Antonetti are assistant GM's now? Why can't we hire a great GM, and then also have a really good assistant GM?

For example, why not hire Kim Ng as GM, and hire Tony LaCava as asst. GM here?

Posted by David B.

12:13 PM, Jul 02, 2008

I think Ibanez could be a fit for the Red Sox. With Ortiz injured he could fill in at Dh and in LF. I'd take Coco Crisp back in a deal, and if we could unload Johjima that would be a bonus.

My other thought has been about Beltre to the Angels, maybe for Chone Figgins and Juan Rivera.

And Bedard to the Cubs or Blue Jays for Jason Marquis or AJ Burnett.

Posted by Nat

12:17 PM, Jul 02, 2008

-j- In case it hasn't been pointed out before, Novice has a very satiric, dry wit. When read in that context his comments are actually funny.

Posted by scrapiron

12:17 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Did anyone notice that Sexson's home run last night came when he was in his "old" batting stance? In other words, he knew he had more power in that stance and went back to it. Ever since he's been in his open stance he hits nothing but singles. (USS Mariner was calling him "Mega-Vidro" which I think is classic)

Why can't Sexson simply stay in his "old" power stance and try for a home run until he gets two strikes on him, then switch to his open stance and try and hit a single and save the at bat?

Bret Boone was a career .250 hitter and almost out of baseball until he came to Seattle and started to shorten up his swing whenever he got to two strikes. His batting average rose because of it, and he had career years for the Mariners.

Posted by Ben

12:26 PM, Jul 02, 2008

David B.,

That trade of Bedard would be one of the worst deals ever... Jason Marquis? That guy is not even a dominent NL pitcher. AJ Burnett? That guy does get hurt and he is too old to invest in.

Posted by scottM

12:27 PM, Jul 02, 2008


I like this approach, Scrap, but it may be much too logical to expect to see it implemented.

Posted by jrob

12:33 PM, Jul 02, 2008

i have always thought that the rays were a team that made sense to trade with
at the beg of season i was talking about clement and ? for kazmir
that aint going to happen now
but they have some stud projects going and we should look at a hitter with power or how about david price

Posted by Andrew

12:35 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Just the image of Willie Bloomquist typing on this blog complimenting himself makes me laugh pretty hard.

Posted by Capo

12:39 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Brain, sorry man....Vidro's contract vests at 450 ABs. thats been covered in great detail at the USSM as well as other places.

Posted by Tired of Retreads

12:45 PM, Jul 02, 2008

With all due respect to Raul Ibanez's classiness and his contributions over the years, why talk about re-signing him? He's 36 years old. Resigning an aging player who was never more than "better than average" is a Bavasi style move. It's time to move on from that approach - especially now that steroids are pretty much gone. These guys aren't going to get better with age. To rebuild this franchise, they need to seriously consider moving every player over 30 9 (if they can find any takers).

Posted by socaltommy

12:47 PM, Jul 02, 2008

First of all, Beltre is the kind of guy we want and need on this team...now and in the future...lock him up!

Wash is the most likely to go....maybe Ibanez but I hope we re-sign him for the same reason as Beltre.

Other than Willie & Cairo, I don't think we'll move anyone else unless someone is willing to overpay for bull pen help.

Probably need to wait until the GM situation is resolved before making any major trades.

Posted by BrianL

12:53 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Capo - USSM and LL believed the option vested at 450 ABs, which is typically the true case. Larry Stone, however, informed us that the option vests at 600-650 ABs.

Posted by Visiting Fan

1:03 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Ben (and others), Bedard HAS played through things:

****How do you stop a losing streak when you're missing your stopper? The Orioles were presented with that dilemma on Wednesday, when they learned that Erik Bedard will miss at least one rotation turn with a strained right oblique. Prior to that announcement, Bedard had been expected to start this weekend in Boston.

"He woke up and felt some discomfort there," said manager Dave Trembley. "I asked him how long he's been like that and he said three or four weeks. He said that it never affected his ability to pitch. He didn't say anything to anybody, which didn't surprise me. He has marked improvement today, but I'm going to skip him a start [anyway]."

Bedard said he's not sure how the injury happened or how long he'll be out. He also said that the ailment didn't affect him in games until his last outing, when he allowed six earned runs in an 11-3 loss to Minnesota.****

And very smartly, he learned from that experience:

****After that start, he decided he needed to take a rest and get things back to normal.

"It just got worse," he said. "We might as well take one start to try to get it better and finish the year strong."****

link

Playing through pain (or fatigue) is not a good idea. It puts the player at risk of greater injury, and it places the team in a bad position, as you have seen Miguel Batista do this season. It's astounding how many people here undermine the effect of pain and injury on performance and worse, label those who are smart enough to know as gutless, heartless, soft, or selfish. No one - no manager, no coach, no GM, no media people - knows a player better than the player. I will trust that player's judgment of what he can give safely over the judgment of anyone else.

Posted by Craig

1:06 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Why would the Red Sox trade for Ichiro when they have J.D. Drew - the American League's player of the month for June - through 2012? Sure, adding Ichiro would give the Sox a ton of speed at the top, but where would Pedroia bat if Ichiro and Jacoby are 1-2? With the injury to Ortiz this year, I'm not sure you want to risk letting Manny walk and then relying on Drew, Lowell and Youk for power in 09.

Posted by vancouver bob

1:09 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Just a trade thought. If the Ms do business with the Phillies it would be great if they could get in return a fine pitcher Philadelphia drafted in the fourth round a couple of weeks ago: Kelso high schooler Trevor May -- a smart, fire-balling strike out artist. It always helps a team to feature players from their own backyard -- all the more important with Sexson's days numbered -- but it's even better when that player is really, really good.

Posted by Capo

1:18 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Brian, my problem with Stone's take is "someone with knowledge of the option"....which could be a towel boy.....I've never seen a vesting option kick in at 600 ABs, thats a full season worth of ABs. vidro had 625 last year playing full time........400-450 is typically where contacts vest, as it takes into account routine time off, injury, etc.

Considering we had to negotiate around a no trade clause, i just find 600-650 AB to be unbelievable......not that I'd complain at all, I just don't believe it.

Posted by Capo

1:22 PM, Jul 02, 2008

vancouver bob,
You can't trade a player drafted in the amateur draft for one year....so anyone drafted this last draft can't be traded until afdter the next draft.

If we're targeting anyone in Philly, its Carlos Carrasco, who is a very very good young pitcher.

Posted by Capo

1:26 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Erik Bedard needs an advertising contract with Tampax or Vagasil...... Seriously people, this will go down as the worst trade in Mariner history.......and to those media people that called Bedard one of the best 3 pitchers in the AL, and best 5 pitchers in baseball....you are freakin morons.

Bedard has had ONE good season and ONE decent season, other than that, a bunch of injury plagued years with crappy results.......the guy has always had the bad reputation, so none of whats happening should be a surprise to anyone except Bavidiot, whose huge head rattles like an aerosoll can when he walks.

Posted by Fortified Milk

1:37 PM, Jul 02, 2008

worst trade in M's history??? give me a break. this wouldnt even be an issue if the M's were in 1st in the West. And the reason they arent has nothing to do with Bedard going 5 innings a game. obviously the guy hasnt lived up to his 'ace' billing, but shut up already about it

Posted by John

1:45 PM, Jul 02, 2008

The Mariners should not trade ANYONE to any AL West Rival...unless..they BLEED them dry. The deal better knock the management's socks off.

Otherwise, they will kick our ass 18 times a year.

Posted by Huskycrash

1:49 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Actually Vidro had 548 as last year based on the Mariners site. I would really like to know what his ab have to be to vest. I wouldn't even get close if I was the Mariners. As for people to trade from our team , I would start with JJ and Washburn. I would also listen to deals on Bedard, Raul, Kenji and anyone from the bullpen bot Lowe and Morrow. I would then go with a starting five of Felix, Silva, RA, RRS and Batista to finish out the year. Thats if you don't get a quality young arm in return. That being said, you better get a 1b, starter and OF with the trades and sign a DH in the off season.

Posted by Resin isn't Cheating

2:15 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Just my 2 cents. The players are playing nicely inside the white lines since Mac was fired. Riggleman appears to be the polar opposite of Johny Mac. Riggle has certainly demonstrated control on the mound. In last night's game I have to credit him for making the right call in pulling RRS out of the game.

Riggle certainly shows he has a feel for the game and when a pitcher appears gassed. I still have the Kerry Wood fiasco in the back of my mind. Overall, I thought he managed the game very well. Improvement over Mac.

The Vidro bunt was exactly the right call in a tie game. I was even impressed that Riggleman has a good feel for the game in reading he could steal off the pitcher with Sexson. These are little things you can't teach a manager that McLaren did not demonstrate at all.

The pinch hit of Reed proved to be the right decision. Riggleman is aware of Reed's groundball tendencies. I also was impressed with Riggle not overmanaging and not pinch hitting for Bloomquist when Cito went with a old school righty vs righty match-up that ended up burning Gaston.

Riggleman didn't have another lefty on the bench so I'm not sure if he would have went with a lefty bat cold off the bench. I'll have to watch for this. I suspect he is old school, but we will have to see.

Overall, I like the no nonsense demeanor and I can tell right away Riggleman has that leadership ability we need. I'll be looking to see if he pitches to Guerrero when we play the Angels, or how his strategy looks during the year.

Trades:

I say we can't afford to pay $12 million next year for a third baseman that only hits for 2 months out of the year when the race and pressure of contention is over.

I also don't believe the M's will be able to re-sign Beltre after 2009. It makes all the sense in the world to trade him at the All-Star break this year when he is on fire with the bat with another year under contract.

You wait after next year he can walk without getting anything in return, or get significantly less trade value in return as a rental player since he is a free agent in 2010.

Posted by casetines

2:16 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Ive been thinking that the Rays were going to have to get at least 2 veterans for the bullpen.

Arthur Rhodes and JJ Putz could be those guys.

If I was the GM I would have considered the Putz trade in the offseason when his value was so high. Just like Billy Beane, move the pitchers at their height before arm injuries come calling. Now we'll be lucky to get 1/4 the bounty we could have gotten but if he can come back and pitch good for 2 weeks, he'll be our best trading piece.

The D Rays have so much depth in the minors, especially at pitching, i think they'd be fine with making a move for Putz to take 9th inning duties.

Posted by Capo

2:35 PM, Jul 02, 2008

"Actually Vidro had 548 as last year based on the Mariners site."

BBs don't count toward plate appearance for statistical purposes, but they do count toward things like bonuses and options.

1:37 PM, Jul 02, 2008

"worst trade in M's history??? give me a break. this wouldnt even be an issue if the M's were in 1st in the West. And the reason they arent has nothing to do with Bedard going 5 innings a game. obviously the guy hasnt lived up to his 'ace' billing, but shut up already about it"

Name a worse trade ass monkey! Lowe and Varitek for Slocumb? Maybe.......but we just gave up an 3 of our best young players, a serviceable reliever, and a closer who has 25+ saves for a 5 inning pitcher with an attitude who costs us a lot of money.

I don't mind debate, but maybe you're the one who should STFU. This board is for discussion and debate, before you go around telling people to shut up, you should have a clue.

Posted by Capo

2:38 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Theres no sense even discussing trades for JJ until he comes back and proves effective......just no sense....any market for him will be tremendously undervalued.

Trading him when he was/is healthy is a completely different story. He is a dominate closer who is actually very inexpensive.....and a closer is a luxury on a team like the M's.

No one, i repeat, no one should be off limits or out of the question if the price is right....not Felix, not Ichiro, no one.

Posted by 6killer

2:40 PM, Jul 02, 2008

wow, this will be an exciting July. I would imagine that the M's will make a ton of moves. It's ironic, in the past, when they have been winning they seemed to be reluctant to make many dealine moves. Now that they stink, all are available.

I just hope Pelkoudas is smart about it.

I would also like to see the Mariners players, the ones that remain after the flurry of expected deals.
I would like to see those players relish the position of being spoilers. Don't juts mail in the rest of the year. Go out and make Los Angeles, Oakland, Minny, Chicago, Detroit, Boston, New York earn their playoff berths.

When the playoff contenders get done playing us we want them saying "Damn, that was NOT easy!"

Posted by Amanda

3:00 PM, Jul 02, 2008

- Hans.... NO, not Richies wife, just a fan that believes in him, and KNOWS he is better than he has been in the past few months. Of course he has been off kilter, but who wouldn't be, if they were booed everytime they came up to bat? Lets try a little encouragement instead!

Go M's!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Stu

3:03 PM, Jul 02, 2008

No, lets boo.

And if someones going to the game, tell those Canadians to take their flags and facepaint, get in their canoes, and paddle home.

Posted by Faceplant

3:08 PM, Jul 02, 2008

"The pinch hit of Reed proved to be the right decision. Riggleman is aware of Reed's groundball tendencies."

Reeds yearly average GB rate is 46.7%. Bloomquists is 49.4%

This year? Bloomquist has a 53.8 GB%. Reed has a 53.5 GB%.

I guess he isn't aware of Bloomquists GB tendencies.

Posted by 6killer

3:10 PM, Jul 02, 2008

this rumor has Bedard going to the Phillies for Victorino and Carlos Carrasco or JA Happ

http://comment.mlblogs.com/search?tag=Mariners&blog_id=22621

Posted by crocka

3:22 PM, Jul 02, 2008

hey, i dont mean to shoot down your ideas, but the red sox are not going to make a move for a catcher OR another outfielder. do you even watch baseball or do you just speculate?

varitek is not only their captain but he anchors their pitching staff. in right field they have JD Drew who they paid 70 million dollars last year to play right field and just hit 12 home runs in the month of april. i, like everyone else, love hearing rumors and would love to see the mariners get off the snide and actually get something going, but idiotic posts from people that actually have wide-reaching forums only causes more out of touch fans to spread mis information and, ultimately, sound as stupid as your blog post.

sorry to be a hater, but your information is skewed.

Posted by Lance

3:27 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Contrary to how Larry Stone feels, I don't think it's impossible to move Jose Vidro to an NL team. You should be able to get a grade B prospect for a veteran switch-hitter who can pinch-hit and play a little infield, not to mention he's a good clubhouse guy and knows the league, provided Seattle picks up around half of the remaining 2008 dollars due.

And, although I'd sure hate to see Sean Green go, I think he's the second coming of Jeff Nelson, I'd think Pelekoudas could get TB to part with one of their many young talented, but not yet established, starters for him. Also, TB would like the fact that he was a solid AAA closer before reaching the bigs. Jeff Niemann would be fantastic, but Jason Hummel would be nice, too.

Mark Lowe is talented, but is too inconsistant right now to be highly sought after for another team's pennant drive. Best to hold onto him.

Posted by Lance

3:33 PM, Jul 02, 2008

I meant to add, my view of Vidro is based on his picking things up in the next couple of weeks. Not a continuation of hitting at a .220 clip. But, that should be doable.

Posted by scottM

3:36 PM, Jul 02, 2008

"Ichiro Going? Quite Possible."

Listening to your bit on KJR, what is it GEOFF? You said on the air that you didn't ever see the M's trading Ichiro. Are you playing your bloggers, stirring up your faithful to build your hit count?

They used to call sensationalized newspaper articles, "Yellow Journalism."

By creating news, that isn't news, or news out of shear speculation, you seem to be on the cutting edge of "Yellow Blogging".

Shame on you, especially a Canadian. You know what they say back home about "yellow snow."

What are you asking us to eat?

Posted by Lance

3:37 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Geoff, I'm kind of surprised you aren't still pounding the drum for the M's picking up Coco Crisp. Just the guy we need to start building this team back up.

Posted by Scanman

4:10 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Billy Beane is at it again, signing a 16 year old absolute super stud of a pitcher. Why can’t WE ??????????????

Posted by Corey Patterson

4:11 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Posted by downonstrikes

5:02 PM, Jul 02, 2008

"Does Erik Bedard speak english? Or just not at all? Maybe we could get him a mime as a translator. "I would go longer than 4 innings if I wasn't trapped in this damn invisible box"

Funniest posting I've ever read. Good job. Too true

Posted by Capo

5:04 PM, Jul 02, 2008

"Billy Beane is at it again, signing a 16 year old absolute super stud of a pitcher. Why can’t WE ??????????????"

Felix Hernandez and Carlos Truinfel say hi!!!!

Seriously, we have one of the best overseas scouting departments in the game.

Felix aside, I'm not a big fan of 16 yr old pitchers, i don't even believe in signing HS pitchers

Posted by Resin isn't Cheating

5:19 PM, Jul 02, 2008

This year? Bloomquist has a 53.8 GB%. Reed has a 53.5 GB%.

You have a valid point. Pick your poison.

Posted by eastcoast

5:38 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Assuming JJ comes back healthy, I think the Rays make a good partner. They could really use a back-up for Percival as well as someone to shorten the game for them. Plus, the Rays have a ton of prospects to trade.

Bedard to Philly seems like a good fit, but I don't like the thought of getting another low power guy in Victorino. This team needs power.

How about Washburn to the Brewers. Other than Sheets, it seems like they could use another starter.

Posted by casetines

7:34 PM, Jul 02, 2008

If I am the Mariners I call up Theo Epstein RIGHT NOW and ask for Jed Lowry in return for some pitching. Their bullpen sure looks weak tonight against the Rays and they should fall 3.5 games back.

Posted by Lola

7:45 PM, Jul 02, 2008

Why does the article linked to here, as have others I have read recently, name Beltre as one of our poor investments? As I recall, he had 99 RBIs last year and a Golden Glove, and this year is on pace for 30 home runs. What am I missing?

Posted by boston fan

6:36 AM, Jul 09, 2008

Yes, because the Red Sox' first priority is to trade for an aging CF to play where, exactly? RF? Where Drew is playing like he's supposed to and to whom the sox have committed years and dollars? I'll take a combination of Crisp and Ellsbury over an over-priced Ichiro any day. Ellsbury will be a very good player for years to come.

And Manny Ramierez has only above average power? He has 17 home runs. That's average?

The sox have bigger things to worry about then jettisoning Cash. Like middle relief. And Arthur Rhodes is about the last pitcher in North America who I'd want wearing the uniform.

Is this the best blogging Seattle has to offer?

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