The Seattle Mariners keep “missing out” on free-agent starting pitchers. So close, and yet so far. If I didn’t know any better, I might conclude that Jack Zduriencik is not actually shopping for another arm.
Names have come and gone. Matt Garza and Ubaldo Jimenez are both pitchers that got paid handsomely for career stats that are less than dazzling. The latest “missed opportunity” is Chris Capuano, who signed with the Boston Red Sox for the staggering salary of $2.25 million.
We keep hearing rumors about various players, and with many of them the Mariners are also mentioned. Is that because the M’s still have holes or because Mr. Z is actually giving some indication that he is shopping?
Capuano was not exactly a coveted prize, but $2.25 million for a starter is nothing in Major League Baseball. That salary means that either Capuano really didn’t want to sign with the Mariners, or Seattle did not actually make a contract offer. Perhaps the Mariners offered $1 million in the hopes that no one else would beat that price.
At Capuano’s age, you get the feeling that the Mariners could have coaxed him into pitcher-friendly Safeco Field with either a two-year deal or a salary that was more in the $3-4 million range. Apparently, neither scenario unfolded.
This just feels like the usual rhetoric that surrounds the Mariners every year. Certainly the franchise got their desired splash with Robinson Cano and the deal for Fernando Rodney was a fairly bold (and risky) move. However, the deals for Corey Hart, Scott Baker and John Buck are vintage Mariner transactions. The trade for Logan Morrison also fits the criteria of a hopeful reclamation project.
Maybe the Mariners are just waiting for Santana to lower his price as the season approaches. Then again, perhaps the Mariners are done dealing, and have been done shopping for longer than we have been led to believe.