What do the Mariners need to do to be buyers at the deadline?
The August 1 trade deadline draws ever closer, but what does Seattle need to do to be a buyer?
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Two weeks ago the Seattle Mariners were almost certainly going to be sellers at the August 1 trade deadline, continuously toiling in mediocrity and underperformance.
Now after a torrid stretch against some of the better teams in baseball, Seattle finds itself testing murky waters. What do they need to show us in the next 18 games to be fully involved in the buyer’s market? Let’s take a look.
There are two important dates from last season that may help us paint a better picture. July 29 was the day Seattle acquired Luis Castillo, and their record stood at 54-47. By the August 2 deadline, Seattle’s record was 56-49.
To be fair, the Mariners are in a very similar situation to last season, but we cannot count on a 14-game win streak. Seattle currently sits at 45-44, so what does this mean?
The trade market is extremely competitive this year and is shaping up to be one of the most interesting deadlines in several years. Expanded playoffs have created a jumble of teams who may believe they have a chance, Seattle included.
Just four games out of a playoff spot and six games out of a division lead, things could certainly be worse for the Mariners.
I believe the Mariners need to finish at least 10-8 before the deadline, preferably 11-7 to be serious participants in the buyer’s market. A source recently told me the Mariners are certainly going to “buy and sell” but the next 18 games can determine the extent of both.
A 10-8 record or better may cause Seattle to be less inclined to move players like Paul Sewald or Teoscar Hernandez. A .500 record or worse may force the front office to sell, shipping off bullpen pieces and pending free agents.
For a complete list of options if Seattle buys or sells, check out my official 60 player trade guide here.
There are so many player acquisition cycles in Major League Baseball, so I do expect Seattle to try to add a big piece to address one of their significant holes. I believe Seattle has a few pieces that carry a value that may never be higher, including top outfield prospect Jonatan Clase, and they may want to capitalize.
We did get an interesting report from JP Morosi yesterday regarding Seattle’s deadline approach.
Excluding a catastrophic or red-hot stretch before the deadline, we should expect Seattle to make at least one buyer and seller move, and be very active in the market. We discussed plenty of names from both of the teams named by Morosi in the trade guide.
This team has to show enough reasons for the front office to be aggressive, and their torrid stretch to end the first half hasn’t hurt. Continue to stay strong and stack up series wins. Go Mariners.