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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 14, 2008 9:50 AM

Trade winds blowing

Posted by Geoff Baker

royyals0711 007.jpg

Sorry I haven't posted since right after yesterday's game. Had to write today's stories, then drive to the airport in Kansas City, hop a flight that left about two hours after final pitch, connect to another flight in Houston that was due to take off 45 minutes after my first flight landed (across the mile-long airport) and finally arrive in Seattle and back home just before midnight. But it worked. I'm here. Just did my weekly Talkin' Baseball segment on the Mitch in the Morning show on KJR AM 950 a couple of days early. Jayson Stark of ESPN had a scheduling conflict this week, so we swapped time slots. Our conversation today had plenty to do with the July 31 trade deadline and ranking players.

Here's how I would rank the M's players most likely to be traded:

1. Arthur Rhodes
2. Erik Bedard
3. Jarrod Washburn
4. Raul Ibanez
5. Adrian Beltre

I say this with regards to what both Jim Riggleman and Lee Pelekoudas said in today's story wrapping up the pre-All Star portion of the schedule.

"I don't feel that we're going to be moving people just to move people,'' Riggleman said. "Some of our higher-profile players that some teams might be interested in, they're not going anywhere unless we are just overwhelmed with something that you just have to listen to.''

As for Pelekoudas: "We want to make changes. I think that's what we said a month ago. Whether they occur in the next two or three weeks, or in several months, remains to be seen. We're not going to make change for change's sake.''

You can read those quotes different ways. Some of it sounds like posturing, trying to drive up the price of players by saying you're not going to hold a fire sale. But some of it is grounded in reality. This team has a terrible offense power-wise. The two offensive players drawing the most interest right now are middle-of-the-order hitters who have been productive when it comes to power. Get rid of them, the offense could be decimated and this team has a shot at losing 110 games.


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