Mariners mid-season trades: What did they lose? What did they gain?

Jack Z Makes Some Moves

It was an interesting night of baseball in Seattle Monday night as trades by both teams interrupted the flow of the game.

The Blue Jays Travis Snyder was traded during the 7th inning and had to be pulled off the field to make his way to Pittsburgh.

The Seattle Mariners were happy that they got the best start of the season from their pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma as Brandon League was unavailable due to a pending trade with the Dodgers, Steve Delabar was unavailable due to a pending trade with the Blue Jays and closer Tom Wilhelmsen was unavailable due to the fact his wife was in labor.

With the drama of these trades along with the Ichiro Suzuki deal last week the question on the minds of fans everywhere is what did the Mariners lose in these trade and what did they gain?

What they lost


Ichiro‘s career slash marks were .322/.366/.418 combined with a 10 time gold glove winner were the marks of an elite level player.  However in the 95 games Ichiro played in 2012 his numbers dropped down to .261/.288/.407.

Such a drastic change was frustrating to say the least, especially from a man that looked every bit as athletic as when he began his career.  But they lost the international face of their franchise, which could have drastic consequences for revenue in the future.

Brandon League

League was a valuable piece of the Mariners bullpen last season

Brandon League

League was a valuable piece of the Mariners bullpen last season when he took over the closing role from the injured David Aardsma.  League was even selected as an All Star in 2011.

Here in 2012 he has been a continual source of frustration.  While some people have said that he was settling into a better groove since the all star break, in the past two weeks his ERA was 7.20.

The only thing the Mariners have lost statistically are the chances to blow more leads.  But baseball is more than just just stats and League was the leader and calming presence in the dugout.

The bullpen has been quite strong for the M’s this season, thanks in part to League’s role.

Steve Delabar

The Mariners like good stories and Steve Delabar has a amazing real life story similar to the movie “The Rookie” staring Dennis Quaid.  Delabar beat the odds and went from high school teacher to major league baseball in a few short months.

He has a dynamic and explosive fastball, but he has been leaving a lot of balls over the plate this season and given up 9 home runs in the 36 innings he has pitched this season.

He bounced back and forth between Seattle and Tacoma all season, it was surprising that he had any value at all to be honest.

What the gained

From Ichiro?

Basically nothing. The M’s picked up two prospects in exchange for the face of the franchise:  D.J. Mitchell and Danny Farquhar.

Mitchell is a 25 year old right hander that has played 4 games at the major league level where he pitched 4.2 innings giving up 7 hits, 3 walks, a home run and 2 earned runs.

He has played at the AAA level for 3 season now and during that time he held an ERA of 3.77 with a WHIP of 1.35.  Hardly impressive.

Farquhar is another 25 year old right handed relief pitcher with dismal numbers.  He has been a part of 5 teams this season being moved between leagues and affiliates.  In his 5 years in the minors he has 14-17 record with 3.03 ERA.

So he is a better option than the Mitchell, barely.

From League

2 prospects from the Dodgers organization: Logan Bawcom and Leon Landry both of whom seem quite to have quite exciting potential.

Logan Bawcom is a 23 year old pitcher from Texas.  While he has never played above the AA level his numbers are quite impressive as a reliever.  At AA Chattanooga he has an ERA 2.60 over 27 games.

Steve Delabar

For Delabar the Mariners receive a Major League ready outfielder, Eric Thames.

With a mid 90’s fastball he works for the strike out and currently is throwing 9.3 Strike outs per nine innings.  Felix Hernandez strike out rate this season is 8.9/9.  So that is impressive.

He still has some control issues which is quite common for a AA pitcher so his walk rate is a bit high 4.2/9 but over all an exciting prospect.

Landry is a 22 year old out fielder that was a third round pick back in 2010 that has been working at the single A level since he signed.  It looks like he is probably ready to move to a higher level as his batting average is .328 with 8 home runs, 15 triples, and 26 doubles.

He has played most of his pro career in Center Field due to his speed (he has also stolen 20 bases in 80 games this season), but he is probably a better fit for left field.

From Delabar

The trade to the Blue Jays involving Steve Delabar brings the most exciting component of any of the Mariners mid season trades by far.  For a inconsistent reliever the Mariners receive a Major League ready outfielder, Eric Thames.

Thames has struggled a bit against Major League pitching a bit, but has shown his potential at AAA the past two seasons.

At AAA Reno this year Thames has hit a .330/.407/.528.

His career fielding percentage is a bit low .975 but he may be turning things around as he has not committed any errors so far this season.


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  • NWSportsBeat

    5 new faces to the franchise. 1 who could probably see some time in the big leagues before the end of the year. I hope all moves help with the team chemistry. Time will tell.

  • Rob

    The M’s may have not received a hot prospect in the trading of Ichiro, however, freeing up 17- million from the payroll (keeping in mind, he would not have resigned for next year for that much but he is not worth the 9-12 million he will command next year) is huge. Ichiro’s money with Figgins and Olivo money will go along way towards finding a high quality power bat in free agency.

  • DanDad

    Thames seems to be the best player we’ve received…Didn’t really go after anyone and dumped Ichiro, League and a few others…Aside from some money freed up for off season free agents, nothing much happened…Maybe Jack Cust will be available again? That’s the BIGGEST bat the M’s have gotten in the off season in YEARS! and yes, he was a TOTAL bust…Did I mention that Vargas was on the block as well? What the H$LL are we doing? Anyhow, continued ‘luck’ with the team we currently toss out each day…And yes, I am a fan, and have been since inception…12 years and no post season, 12 years and no big free agents…and a team that consists of a SLEW of 1st through 4th year players that are STILL trying to be consistent MLB players…King Felix and the expendables, starring a totally frustrated Eric Wedge and a bunch of other great coaches that are more like baby sitters as compared to coaches…NO OFFENSE to the players, JUST the GM…Peace out to all and to all a good night!

  • Thanks for the comments. I think we are all on the same page here. Frustration mixed with hope for a fresh start.

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