Fantasy Notes: Seattle Won’t Play
October 27, 2006 | | comment on this post
- Apparently, a high profile Japanese star will be posted that the Mariners won’t go after. Throughout their history, the Mariners have used their Pacific Rim locale to lure big-name Asian stars to Seattle (think Ichiro Suzuki, Kaz Sasaki, Kenji Johjima). The team has always at least been a player in these biddings. But this offseason, when one of the most anticipated Japanese stars in years hits the market — Daisuke Matsuzaka — the Mariners apparently won’t be players. The WBC MVP will be posted next week and MLB teams will blindly bid for the right to negotiate with him (yes, that’s right — winning this posting process doesn’t guarantee you anything). With only two starters a sure thing for 2007, Seattle has several holes in its rotation, so you’d think it would be all over this hyped ace. But some suggest it’s going to take as much as $20 million to win the rights to sign him, and that’s a lot of clams that could be used to fill out the rotation of a young team. The M’s could also use an upgrade at a corner outfield spot, especially if Ichiro shifts to centre field as expected. Let’s face it, the Mariners probably won’t be competing for a couple of years, even though it doesn’t take much to make a splash in the AL West, it seems. Expect Suzuki to be moved before next All-Star break as the club completely reinvents itself.
- One name the Mariners are expected to pursue this offseason is Adam Eaton. He had a very forgettable season with the Rangers thanks to a finger injury that caused him to miss most of the year. When he was healthy, he was anything but dominant. This guy has teased owners with his potential for years now, but the fact is he’s an injury-prone pitcher who’s declining K rate is cause for concern. Yes, Eaton’s overall numbers would be much improved in a move from hitter-friendly Ameriquest to pitcher-pal Safeco, but there’s no getting around the fact that he’s essentially a five-inning pitcher who has never pitched 200 innings in a season. If the money’s right, it’s worth the gamble for the Mariners, but if they have to lay out serious coin in a multi-year deal, they should pass.