Seattle Mariners Not Looking to Sell
The Seattle Mariners, a team that was 12 games under .5oo less than two weeks ago, have seen a dramatic turnaround and are now calling themselves contenders. The white-hot Mariners have won the last eight games and have improved their 40-52 record to 48-52, just four games under .500. Less than two weeks ago the Mariners were 12.5 games behind for the second wild card spot, while they also sat behind 6 other teams. Now, they are just 8.5 games behind and have jumped three teams on their uphill battle to postseason hopes.
Mariners’ General Manager Jack Zduriencik had considered his teams to be sellers earlier this year, and was open to trading veterans in order to create room for rookies and other rising stars. However, Jon Heyman of CBS reports that times have changed and Zduriencik has declined all offers sent his way as he feels that the team has all the right pieces to contend.
teams that have checked with #mariners lately say they’re not selling at all right now. cant really blame ‘em.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) July 24, 2013
Teams such as the Yankees and Pirates have checked in with the Mariners for veteran bats such as Raul Ibanez, Kendrys Morales, Brendan Ryan, and Mike Morse. Ibanez has specified that he would rather remain in Seattle than be traded to a contender, while Morse, a free agent to come, has spent much of this season on the disabled list. Another upcoming free agent, Kendrys Morales, would definitely sell high, but the Mariners would rather keep his leadership and middle of the order switch hitting abilities. Brendan Ryan was replaced by rookie Brad Miller this summer and is targeted mainly because of his defense. He has only posted a .194 average over the last two seasons, however he won the 2012 Fielding Bible Award at shortstop.
Other teams such as the Rockies and Red Sox have been calling in to the Mariners’ front office to look for pitching help. Veteran starting pitchers Joe Saunders and Aaron Harang have both been on the trading block, but recent success has taken them off of it. Bullpen members such as the dominate southpaw Oliver Perez and closer Tom Wilhelmsen have been approached by teams who need help in the back of the bullpen.
The Mariners are in the thick of a wild card race and they feel like they have all of the pieces to remain in the mix as the later months roll around.