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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 30, 2008 9:15 AM

M's all talk, waiting on Yankee action

Posted by Geoff Baker

We're approaching the 24-hour window for that Jarrod Washburn-to-New York deal to get done and the standoff between the Mariners and New York Yankees continues. By "window" I mean prior to the July 31 trade deadline. The M's, of course, can still deal Washburn after that, but everyone has to pass through waivers first. By everyone, I also mean the players (if any) coming back Seattle's way. If it's a decent prospect, fat chance of that happening.

As we mentioned the other day, what you have here is a game of "chicken" or "poker" being played to see who will blink first. The New York media seems to agree on that now. At least, some writers do. Here's the take by John Harper of the New York Daily News, which actually calls it a "poker'' game.

The folks at Newsday have also been all over this deal from the beginning. They call this a "dead'' deal, but I don't share that opinion. I agree with Harper above in that the Yankee spin-meisters only want folks to think it's dead so that the M's will cave and throw Washburn out there. But as we mentioned two days ago, and which the Newsday reporters do in their piece, the M's are really under no pressure to get a cash-only deal done with the Yankees on Washburn. You can do that in August, since waivers won't be an issue in a salary dump. Well, they could be an issue for the Yankees if a team steps up to claim Washburn, either out of interest or to block a trade.

But if it's a salary-only deal anyway, the M's can just let that claiming team take Washburn and all of his salary. What do they care? At most, they'd lose that third-rate, token prospect the Yanks are offering to throw in right now. No big deal. As we discussed, as long as the Yanks stick to their current position, the M's are under no pressure to move Washburn by tomorrow. They can always call New York's bluff and then, if they really are desperate to unload his salary, just make the move on Aug. 1. New York's needs won't change in one day. They aren't going to walk away from the salary-only deal just because 24 hours have passed.

It was no coincidence that interim Seattle GM Lee Pelekoudas picked last night to hold an impromptu gathering with Seattle beat writers just before gametime. Pelekoudas wanted to fire off another salvo in public, directly at the Yankees, without actually naming them.

His claim that the team is under no pressure to deal Washburn before next month's actual, final trade deadline of Aug. 31 is bang-on. It's true. As I've just outlined above, he can do that deal with New York on Friday morning under its current set-up.

But the biggest missile he fired in this verbal Cold War was to state that the team has no problem waiting until the winter meetings before dealing Washburn. Or keeping him for next season. Now, that may be true. Or, it may be the biggest fib since Rangers manager Ron Washington lied about Hank Blalock having an upset stomach the other night (it was a bad shoulder and he's now on the DL).

The M's might, as Buster Olney wrote for ESPN the other day, realize that this is the biggest chance they'll ever have to offload Washburn's $13.6 million in salary owed through 2009. If they wait until the winter and Washburn implodes these final two months, there is little chance of that happening.

Or, the M's might be serious that they consider Washburn a valuable piece of their rotation and would be counting on him in 2009. Counting on him for what? Who knows? This team still hasn't decided whether it's going to take a shot in 2009 or blow the whole thing up. Or something in between. The new GM will have a huge say in that.

So, this whole "wait until the winter'' thing could be one huge Pelekoudas bluff.

Why would the Yankees fall for it? Because if the M's are serious and really are prepared to wait until the winter unless given a serious prospect in return, then New York has to make the deal by tomorrow. Because you won't get a top prospect through waivers after the July 31 deadline. And perhaps the M's will find another bidder on Washburn by tomorrow. Olney speculates here that it could be the New York Mets. Suggests a package deal with Raul Ibanez. Why not? This story out of Denver saysthe Rockies, easing into contention in a terrible division, may also get in on Washburn.

But if the Yankees call the Pelekoudas bluff, figuring he'd be thilled to unload Washburn's money, then they can wait beyond the deadline and complete the deal in August. It's all on the Yankees now and how desperate they are feeling.

Here's one of the Newsday baseball blogs, written by Kat O'Brien, about the state of New York pitching. Not pretty. I liked this comment by one of her readers, el predicto, which goes: yanks will make big deals tomorrow using their plethora of young trade chips in the minor leagues plus melky, wilson betermeat and maybe others. the team can't stay this way and won't win if they do.

If you're the M's, you have to hope the Yankees are thinking that way. For all that isn't happening, this is truly great theater if you know what to look for.


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Posted by shane

9:43 AM, Jul 30, 2008

For once, the M's look like they can play this smart. I hate the idea that you make a move just to make a move - especially when there are options (waivers, etc...) still on the table.

Posted by Inquisitive

9:56 AM, Jul 30, 2008

How does waivers work? Doesn't the worst team get first crack on a waiver claim? If so, wouldn't the Mariners just put in a claim on whatever good prospect the Yankees have to offer and then the trade still go through? I guess the only issue would be that the Nationals are still worse than the M's.

Posted by Searle

10:01 AM, Jul 30, 2008

big WHIP (1.42), big BAA (.289), big salary for Washburn, why do the Yanks want him again? oh right, he has done well for x amount of starts, let's see the great run scoring teams he has shutdown...um, Tonto, Angels, KC, Oakland, Toronto again, San Diego, Atlanta, Washington, Toronto for the third time....um, why do they want him again?

Posted by fred

10:05 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Geoff: I am afraid that Pelakoudas might not have been bluffing the Yankees yesterday and truly believed what he said. Washburn has been an expensive, mediocre pitcher for the Mariners. His last few starts have given him pre-July 31 trading value that he will never have again. He should be traded to the Yanks or anyone else for his salary and whatever else he can bring---even a second-tier prospect. The money will be handy next year in the rebuilding process.

Ditto as to Ibanez' trading value. It will never be higher than it is until tomorrow noon. Trade him now, for whatever prospects he can bring, and move to the future. Obviously Rhodes, Cairo, Vidro, Burke and other older players are people who will not be here next year and should go by tomorrow to anyone who will take them for cash or players.

Finally, how about trading Betancourt right now? He is regressing in the field and it is clear he does not care about learning how to bunt, run bases or take pitches in order to draw an occasional walk.
The Dodgers and a couple other contenders need shortstops. The Mariners should move Betancourt to one of them now.

Finally, and perhaps unrelatedly, it was discouraging to watch Riggleman last night send up Johjima and Betancourt to bunt, in key situations, when neither of them can bunt. Riggleman has been around since spring training and should know his players better than that by now. Riggleman has made a generally good impression as interim manager but, just as Pelakoudas, probably should be replaced in the off-season with a take-no-excuses fundamentalist.

Posted by Jamie

10:15 AM, Jul 30, 2008

I agree with Fred on getting the most for our tradeable players - especially if we just "lose" them on the off season. I am a huge Raul fan, but would rather see the M's get something for him this year instead of losing him to free agency next year. Let's face it, why would he resign with the M's after this disaster?

But, what I am really curious about is Kenji - any news on his knee? That looked mighty painful.

My impression of Washburn increased mightly when he pitch ran. He looked like he was having fun and taking it in stride. It wasn't pretty but it worked!

Posted by Ryan

10:16 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Searle,

I'm guessing one reason they want him, is that they can afford to take on his salary, and he is still better than Sidney Ponson or Darrell Rasner, neither of whom have playoff experience. You really can't base these things on numbers, then these trades would never happen. Wash is a gamer, he will do whatever the team asks him to do. He makes every start. You're only as good as your last few starts. Fortunately for him, he's been really good lately.

Posted by Gray Mariner

10:16 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Stick to your guns, Lee. Hopefully the days of trading assets for players that you'll never see on the roster are gone. Moves should have a chance to improve your team, if not now, then in the future. The Mariners are not cash strapped. They don't have to make this deal just to dump salary.

Posted by M's Fan

10:17 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Heard Geoff on the radio.... Rhodes possibly to Millwaukee? Do it! I agree with Fred, move any of those guys you can. Any that are still around after the deadline need to be DFA'd or sat on the bench. Yuni? if you can move him for something of value, why not? Triunfel will be ready within a couple of years. Wins right now mean nothing, time to let the young players sink or swim.

Posted by scrapiron

10:17 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Washburn for Brett Gardner is a fair deal. Hold out for that, or let the new GM deal Washburn in the off season. I wouldn't deal Wash for Melky Cabrera. We need to start rebuilding the team with guys that can draw a walk and can work the count.

Posted by scrapiron

10:19 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Seattle Mariners trade DH/1B Ken "Digger" Phelps to the New York Yankees for OF Jay Buhner.

Now THAT was a good Yankee trade!

Posted by Adam

10:21 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Here's the thing. Wsahburn isn't much better than Ryan Rowland Smith. At least, not $10 million better. He's not $10 million better than Brandon Morrow, or even Ryan Feierabend.

As I outlined yesterday, Washburn isn't a different pitcher now than he was at the end of May. His control is worse, and his strikeouts are down. Now is the perfect time to deal Washburn, because his value simply cannot get higher (he could, of course, pitch lights out the rest of the season, but I don't that will happen).

Buster Olney is exactly right - this is the perfect opportunity to get rid of more than $13 million dollars and start building for the future. Washburn isn't a part of that future, and even if the Mariners were going for it in 2009, they'd be better off spending his money in other spots (SS, OF, SP) and going with RRS, Morrow, and/or Feierabend.


It's not a big deal if we don't trade Ibanez, we'll probably get better value out of the two comp picks in the draft. But holding on to Washburn would be BIG mistake.

Posted by Frank

10:24 AM, Jul 30, 2008

The way waivers the Mariners could still deal Washburn for any players not on the 40 man roster of another team or who also cleared waivers.

It seems like they are willing to wait until August to deal Washburn, or at least long enough for more teams to come along. Sounds like the Mets might be interested.

On one hand I'm ok with them focusing on dealing players besides Washburn who likely won't clear waivers. Even if they have to deal him in August they're probably won't get any less than they would now.

Posted by Frank

10:26 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Just fixed a typo...

The way waivers work the Mariners could still deal Washburn for any players not on the 40 man roster of another team or who also cleared waivers.

It seems like they are willing to wait until August to deal Washburn, or at least long enough for more teams to come along. Sounds like the Mets might be interested.

On one hand I'm ok with them focusing on dealing players besides Washburn who likely won't clear waivers. Even if they have to deal him in August they're probably won't get any less than they would now.

Posted by Ryan

10:29 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Just read on MLB trade rumors that the deal with the Yankees is pretty much dead. The M's want too much. The Mets and Rockies have gotten involved in this too. Looks like Colorado is trying to be a buyer. Hell in that division we'd only be 12 out.

Posted by Soonerman22

10:44 AM, Jul 30, 2008

How about we sweeten the deal to New York

We will give you Jarrod Washburn (you pay all of his salary), and Kenji Johjimia (we will pay half his contract). And you send us Brett Gardner

Posada is done for the year and would be best served next year and for the future as a DH and Giambi is gone end of the year. Also this will help you international appeal, and who know with good hitters around him, and being on a winning team maybe he can have a batting average that is above his body weight.

Posted by meagain

10:48 AM, Jul 30, 2008

It's worth mentioning that evaluating these deals is right in Pelekoudas' wheelhouse, since he was the team expert on trade complexities and contract matters before he took on the GM job. However, he has not been the guy pulling the trigger.

If he gets jobbed, it will be on talent evaluation and not the details of the deal, I expect. Let's keep our fingers crossed.

Posted by headliner

10:50 AM, Jul 30, 2008

The M's want to win games. So, they trade Washburn, a very good athlete, a gamer, one of the 3 best pitchers they have, and keep Batista and Silva. Is there something wrong with this picture?

Posted by ancient mariner

10:50 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Trade him to the Mets for a decent prospect. Screw the Yankees!

Posted by ken

10:51 AM, Jul 30, 2008

The Yankees, despite their great hitters, won't be able to make the playoffs so long as Rasner & Ponson are in their rotation. Moose and Pettite are aging & probably won't be as effective in August-Sept. as they have been so far this season. The M's are doing the right thing by holding out for a decent prospect rather than taking a junk prospect just to unload Washburn's salary - it's the M's who have the leverage and not NYY. It would be enjoyable to watch the Yankees fade and not make the playoffs in the final year of old Yankee Stadium.

Posted by Mark

10:56 AM, Jul 30, 2008

This is just like the Richie Sexson situation last year. Some team claimed Sexson on waivers then the Mariners pulled him back. He sucked this year so they ate his salary. You've got to think Washburn even as a 5th starter will give you more next year than Sexson did this year, but worst case scenario they just eat another salary.

Posted by Soonerman22

11:00 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Think Baltimore will trade us Sherrill for Betancourt and J.J?

And why haven’t we heard Rob Johnson in any trade rumors. He is never going to catch for the Mariners, with the log jam they have at that position. He isn’t a bad hitter or catcher either. He probably will never be an all-star but even Dan Wilson was only an All- Star once and he wasn’t bad. Why don’t they see what they can get for him? Maybe a couple prospects? I know Cincinnati is looking

Posted by Thiago

11:04 AM, Jul 30, 2008

If Mariners trade Washburn and pick Gardner it's fine.
Morrow or Feirebiend will have a chance to join rotation

Posted by GripS

11:10 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Although Washburn may be mediocre. He's doing a hell of a lot better then Batista and Silva. I'm thinking we keep him and hope his command sticks around for the remainder of the year so we can get even better prospects then what is currently offered.

Posted by scottM

11:12 AM, Jul 30, 2008

***Why the M's Suck in '08***

Two-thirds of the way into the 2008 season, the M's roster has performed as follows, based on 2007 and career expectations:

++ much better than expected:
Morrow
Rhodes

+ somewhat better than expected:
Lopez (++ at bat, - in the field)
Dickey
LaHair (small sample)
Green
Cochoran

= as expected:
Ibanez
Felix
Lowe
RRS
Cairo (+ in the field, – at the plate)
Bloomquist
Burke
Reed
Jimeñez (small sample)

– somewhat lower than expected:
Ichiro (= in the field, – at bat)
Washburn (– – for April May, + for June July)
Bedard (– – for health, = for games actually pitched)
Beltre (– in the field, – at bat)
Betancourt (– in the field, – at bat)
Sexson (= in the field, no improvement at the plate as needed)
Clement (+ behind the plate, – – at bat)

– – much worse then expected:
Silva
Batista
JJ Putz
Johjima
Vidro
Balentien
O'Flaherty

In sum,
two of your five starting pitchers, your closer, your catcher, and DH have all performed far worse than expected.

Your star outfielder, your power hitting first baseman, your third baseman, shortstop, and two more of your starting pitchers have performed below expectations.

Your starting left fielder, one of your starting pitchers, your bench and a few relievers have performed in the manner expected.

Of your starters, only your second baseman (and only at the plate), has somewhat exceeded expectations this year.

Only your back-up closer and situation lefty have performed well above expectations in '08.


***Why the M's Suck in '08***

Posted by -j.

11:14 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Forget dealing Washburn right now. Concentrate on Rhodes and Ibanez.

Heard from MLBTradeRumors that there is something brewing between the Marlins and Mariners for Rhodes.

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2008/07/rhodes-to-the-m.html

Posted by Bill

11:43 AM, Jul 30, 2008

What about Washburn and Ibanez to the Mets for cash and a prospect and Rhodes and Clement to the Marlins for Jacobs?

Posted by GeoW

11:45 AM, Jul 30, 2008

Geoff - About getting a good prospect through waivers, isn't it correct that teams make waiver claims in reverse order to their current W-L records? If that's the case, only Washington could interfere with the M's claiming the prospect that the Yankees have agreed to put on waivers. Under this scenerio, if Washington claims the Yankees withdraw the prospect. If they don't, the M's claim and in return allow the Yankees to claim Washburn. What do you say?

Posted by Rocket

11:46 AM, Jul 30, 2008

ScottM: Nice analysis. Everyone below expectations should be on the trading block. It's fairly easy to find a .270 hitter to replace guys like Ibanez, even though fans love Rauuuuuuul. I believe the Yankess will go through with a deal at the deadline. Lil' Steinbrenner wants to impress his Dad with a playoff appearance and run to the WS. He isn't going to do it with Ponson and without a catcher.

Posted by Mr. Sabermetrics

12:01 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Trading Jeff Clement this early in his career is unforgiveable and only feeds the team's concept of vets over kids with upside.

He will figure it out. Some guys (LaHair? Bruce? Votto?) get it quicker and tend to fade and others take time (Bruce and Votto may apply here, so will Adam Jones).

He deserves a fair shake. We still have Adam Moore waiting in the wings and Rob Johnson (who I feel is basically a #2 catcher in the majors).

Stop with the trade Clement rosterbation nonsense. M's fans will always confuse me with their understandable frustration with lame vets and their equally bizarre love/hate with our prospects.

LaHair is my fave at the moment. Whose to say he won't be Sean Casey and have a decent MLB career (b.a. w/ minimal power and a decent glove).

Clement should be off limits PERIOD. Jacobs isn't gonna be an M just because Churchill says so. Rhodes will fetch a decent young pitcher most likely.

Posted by Chuck

12:07 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Lee should sit on the Washburn deal and work hard on getting players for Raul. Why? Because he will never again be worth what he is now. He is a free agent at the end of the season. We will need a left handed power hitting DH for Safeco next season, so sign him then. In the meantime bring up Diaz from Tacoma and give him a shot.

Its a win-win for the Ms. We get a good look at another prospect, get one or two prospects in trade, and be rid of Ibanez who might get a few key hits and the Ms accidently win those games. With him gone we have an even better chance for the #1 draft pick in 2009.

Posted by Chris from Bothell

12:09 PM, Jul 30, 2008

The only way the Ms could screw this up now is:

a) rely on Washburn in 09 as anything other than a #5 starter
b) if a trade to the Yankees gets Igawa
c) if Cabrera or Gardner comes back but the Ms don't get rid of Reed (i.e. there's no need for 2 4th outfielders in the lineup, any more than there's a need for both Bloomquist and Cairo on the same roster)

Anything else is fine, for all the reasons Geoff cites.

Posted by Ryan

12:21 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Headliner,


At this point in the season, it's not about winning games anymore. The season is over, they aren't going anywhere. Teams are usually looking to deal guys with big contracts, free agency approaching, as well as guys with trade value. Batista and Silva have none. Would you trade for either one of those two?? I think your question is answered.


It isn't necessarily about who is the better player. It's about fitting with salary, whether or not the team taking that player wants to eat up the contract. Silva is in the first year of a 4 year deal. Any team acquiring him would be stupid. Batista, with better numbers, might have value, but he doesn't right now.

Posted by Ryan

12:25 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Re: Chris from Bothell


If a trade to the Yankees lands Igawa, I will never be on this blog again, and will probably jump ship. That is about the worst thing that could happen. So, yes I agree with you 100 percent.

Posted by Bill

12:28 PM, Jul 30, 2008

My suggestion that the M's include Clement with Rhodes in a deal for Jacobs had nothing to do with what anyone said on their blog or website, rather, my own observation that the Marlins need a catcher and a reliever and the M's need a 1B.


I'd rather have them trade Kenji or Burke than Clement but the Marlins would never go for that.


I don't have a problem with LaHair like some do. He could turn out to be a solid player, probably not an elite 1B, but also not someone they would have to overpay. He should be playing every day.

Posted by Beltretrade?

12:29 PM, Jul 30, 2008

GEOFF

any word on likelihood of rumored Giants/Beltre deal?

SF's farm system is good enough to potentially pull something off...

Posted by Blackwolf

12:50 PM, Jul 30, 2008

I'm proud that Lee Pelekoudas is taking this tough stand in his trade talks be it about Washburn with NYYs etc.......
About Ibanez with any of his suitors (Mets,Cubs,etc.....) or Betlre with the Twins etc.....and any playe that clubs have shown an interest in trading for.
By using this stance and method he's informing the other MLB GMs the days of fleecing the M's are over.
I'm not Bonehead Bavasi and I will protect the interests,future,etc...... of the M's not yours.

Posted by Hop

12:56 PM, Jul 30, 2008

If they trade Washburn, who would they replace him with in the rotation this year and next?

Someone who may or may not be better than he is right now?

The M's will still need a 4 or 5 starter and Washburn, though a little high in salary, fills that role just fine regardless of whether the M's will compete.

They are in no big hurry to trade him if it's only for salary and I don't blame them.

Posted by BrianL

12:58 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Bill - A good catcher is far more valuable than a good 1B.

Posted by Ben

1:02 PM, Jul 30, 2008

http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/2008/07/26/2008-07-26_latroy_hawkins_brett_gardner_off_the_ros.html

Gardner was sent down to get more consistent play... so perhaps that means a deal is actually getting done and they're just covering it up right now...? Hmm...

Posted by Top pick in 09 draft

1:11 PM, Jul 30, 2008

I think Washburn would do very well in the NL as he has pitched well in the interleague games; a trade to the Mets, perhaps even packaged with Ibanez, should pry loose the Mets top pitching prospect. If Bonehead Bill were still our GM, I have no doubt that the deal would have been made with NYY and we would have Igawa now pitching with the Tacoma Rainiers. I wonder if Bonehead has gone full circle and is now back to his original baseball job working as a groundskeeper somewhere

Posted by scrapiron

1:17 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Hop - Adam already posted it. You replace Washburn with either Ryan Rowland-Smith or Plan B is Ryan Fierabend.

Washburn has a career ERA of 4.07 and WHIP of 1.30. RRS has put up similar numbers at the major league level, although in a smaller sample set. Feirabend has put up similar numbers, although at AAA. So if you can replace Washburn's numbers and save $9 million in the process, don't you do it?

Posted by scrapiron

1:18 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Another deadline is also approaching: August 15th. The Mariners must sign Joshua Fields by then or lose his rights. I was hoping they'd have him pitching at Tacoma already by now. If he is as good as everyone thinks, he might make J.J. Putz more expendable.

Posted by BrianL

1:20 PM, Jul 30, 2008

scrapiron - I imagine that Fields will sign soon, but I doubt he pitches anymore this season. He pitched a ton of innings in college-ball this year and adding to that could be dangerous.

Posted by fundamentally insane

1:24 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Keep Washburn, the hell with "The Empire"

The Mariners players need to represent. Not just for themsleves, not just for pride, not for fat contracts, not just for the fans, but for Dave Niehaus!

Put in double time at the batting cages, double time in fielding and fundamental drills. Do it for Dave!

I mean this season maybe over as far as glory goes. But Niehaus deserves better than this in his HOF year. In 32 years Niehaus missed 82 games.
82 games! And this is how the Mariners players honor Dave!?!

Come on guys do it for Dave!

Posted by BrianL

1:26 PM, Jul 30, 2008

fundamentally insane - And how does keeping an overpaid #5 starter on the payroll qualify as "honoring Dave"?

Posted by Ben

1:27 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Posted by Ben

1:29 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Also you can see in that ESPN article that the Mets are not going to really go after Washburn or Rhodes.

Posted by dfb

1:29 PM, Jul 30, 2008

The fact is, all decent starting pitching is getting expensive. If Washburn doesn't implode and continues pitching the same way he has the last month then his salary for next year will be about right. Certainly the M's have some lefties that are a lot cheaper in the minors like Rowland-Smith and Feierbend, but I'm not sure either one would be able to put up the same numbers if JW continues to pitch like he has. The M's have to be smart and not just knee-jerk because some internet posters want to have 5 number one guys in the rotation next year.

Posted by Ben

1:30 PM, Jul 30, 2008

And Pudge is now a Yankee... looks like it's heating up now...

Posted by Donovan

1:36 PM, Jul 30, 2008

For once, the M's have a better hand than the Yanks. The Yankees are desperate for pitching with a capital D. They cannot make the playoffs with the rotation they have, and standing pat isn't an option their fanbase will tolerate. Time is on the M's side. Money isn't the big concern with Wash. No way would I trade him without a plus prospect coming back. A straight salary dump is the deal Bavasi would have made (with some ancient reclamation project coming back).

Posted by Pace Perconte

1:45 PM, Jul 30, 2008

anyone else think we should bench Yuni for a bit or even send him to AAA to get it together?

Yuni has looked lost at the plate. He looked awful on that missed bunt last night. He looked awful on that muffed grounder. When he's at the plate he just hacks at the 1st or 2nd pitch. He hits the ball with no authority whatsoever. He just pops it up or hits a weak flyball or groundball.

Not to mention his fielding. He has looked slow and hesitant in the field. The funny thing is, he still trys to look flashy, but it's not fooling anyone.

I think that if he was sent down to hone his skills, Yuni could be a solid SS. He has the talent and he is still young. He looks lost. His self-confidence is gone. When Yuni is at the top of his game he is a valuable asset to this team, right now he is hurting them.

Posted by Mike

1:51 PM, Jul 30, 2008

I still feel that a straight salary dump is a win for the Ms. I am also thrilled that Lee isn't talking like this and is trying to take advantage of Washburn's recent success and the Yankees desire to compete.

Prediction...in the end we'll end up with a combination of salary dump and prospect a step down (but not too far down)from Gardner. Or we'll get Melky or Gardner and let the Yanks save some face by having the Ms pay for Wash's 08 salary but not 09.

Posted by MacMariner

1:54 PM, Jul 30, 2008

I read that the Fields deal is already agreed. We should here it announced soon.

Posted by fundamentally insane

1:59 PM, Jul 30, 2008

fundamentally insane - And how does keeping an overpaid #5 starter on the payroll qualify as "honoring Dave"?

BrianL I never stated that you did. I said the Hell with the Empire keep Washburn. Then I started a new paragraph. In English that sometimes means a new topic. Thanks for the ANALysis though.

Posted by JP

2:06 PM, Jul 30, 2008

The thing about bluffing is if your opponent knows he has a better hand than you then your bluff just plays straight into his hand.

In walk the Mariners, Washburn in hand (13 million owed) and the other guy (Yankees) know that we want his salary off our books so we can start the rebuilding process. Who would you bet on as the ultimate winner in this hand? Cashman or Pelekoudas a.k.a. Mr. Travelocity or Expedia (whichever site people use to book travel on).

Never bring a knife to a gun fight. Time after time we are the ones bringing the knife and only when the FO is replaced and we let our true GM have autonimy(think i spelled that wrong) will we be successful in these deals.

Posted by scrapiron

2:09 PM, Jul 30, 2008

BrianL - Since Fields is a reliever, I don't think the amount of innings is staggering. I would think as long as you put him out for no more than one inning at an appearance you'd be able to use him this year. I heard the reason they drafted a reliever with their #1 pick was because he was the closest to being major-league ready, and could potentially help the Mariners as soon as this year.

MacMariner - Where did you read that Fields had signed? That would be good news if true.

Posted by scrapiron

2:15 PM, Jul 30, 2008

I just looked up Joshua Fields stats - 37.1 IP in 36 games. I think he could pitch at AAA this season for sure, and if he did well could earn a September call up.

Posted by Lance

2:19 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Time to forget the Yankees and spend the remaining time with other teams on guys like Rhodes, Ibanez, Beltre, Burke, or whomever. They can always get back to New York next week.

If the Yanks prefer Arroyo or Padilla, guys that they can get for the same deal they're offering for Washburn, hey, go for it.

Posted by BrianL

2:21 PM, Jul 30, 2008

scrapiron - I don't believe that number includes the college playoff IPs.

Posted by ken

2:30 PM, Jul 30, 2008

I was looking for news on Fields but haven't seen anything to hint that an agreement has been reached. Field's agent, Bora$, always wants to wait until the last possible minute in order to squeeze maximum $ from the team. I wouldn't expect him to break from character. The 8/15 signing deadline was put in just because of guys like Bora$ who otherwise would keep a guy like Fields held-out until just before the next draft.

Posted by MacMariner

2:49 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Scapiron: - I believe it was in a Baseball Prospectus piece about draft signing fees. I'll try and find the article quote..........his signing is the least of my worries.

Posted by MacMariner

3:08 PM, Jul 30, 2008

Scrapiron

"Only one deal seems to be done and unannounced at this time, and that's with the 20th overall pick, Josh Fields, and the Mariners. Sources indicate that Fields, a Scott Boras client, and the Mariners have agreed to an over-slot bonus of $2 million, but as with all of these signings, it remains uncertain as to when the deal will be announced in relation to the August 15th deadline."

Posted by Hop

3:28 PM, Jul 30, 2008

The problem with replacing Washburn with RRS or Feierabend is a known commodity versus two unknown gambles.

For all he's worth, Washburn has been somewhat reliable. He's the guy you keep. Bautista can go, Dickey is a 'wild card' I don't believe anyone really knows what will become of him.

I'm all for RRS and Feierabend pitching, but I don't think them pitching at the expense of trading away Washburn for some cash and a nothing prospect is a smart move.

I definately don't think it's a good idea if the deal involves bringing Igawa over and by the way I read, the Yanks are doing all they can to force Igawa down the M's throats. The M's are right to gag on that and say no thanks.

Posted by Ragarm

3:45 PM, Jul 30, 2008

"But if the Yankees call the Pelekoudas bluff"

Yeah, I guess they did call it and come out better for it.

So shane, are you ready to change what you wrote for the first enty of this post?

The M's have come up empty handed again.

Posted by Big Ebu

4:32 PM, Jul 30, 2008

The 37 IP’s for Josh Fields that scrapiron references includes the College WS innings (according to the Georgia Bulldogs website I just looked at). In 2007 Josh threw 38 innings so he was used about the same amount this year as last year. I’d think that he could throw some innings for the Mariners organization in 2008 after he is signed.

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