There, I said it.
Obviously this is not a bold proclamation by any stretch of the imagination. There has been a lot of talk involving the New York Mets, Detroit Tigers, Tampa Bay Rays and Baltimore Orioles. Nothing has transpired.
The clock is ticking, and we are only ten days away from the start of the season. Teams are narrowing their focus and preparing to go with what they have. Seattle could still trade Nick Franklin or sign someone like Kendrys Morales. However, I just don’t see it.
Let’s make this really simple. We can dig deep into the sabermetrics and project what Franklin might do during his professional career. However, we just don’t know.
Frankly, Franklin just isn’t good enough right now. Now, don’t misunderstand that statement. He is a “top” prospect and he may have a very bright future. The problem is that we just haven’t seen it yet. Therefore, the Mariners are faced with the prospect of trading one unproven quantity for another.
Franklin has had an opportunity to play during spring training, but he hasn’t exactly been hitting the cover off the ball. While Brad Miller is hitting .447 with four home runs, Franklin is hitting .243 during the month of March. Spring training stats are not necessarily a great representation of what will happen during the regular season, but if you are going to showcase a player, you hope they hit more like Miller and less like Franklin.
Whatever teams are offering, I doubt it has been overwhelming in terms of value. Perhaps the Mets or Tigers have offered a “package” of young prospects, but if you trade Franklin for a trio of Double-A players, you are essentially winding back the clock and starting over.
Perhaps Franklin ends up in a platoon or bench role, but maybe the Mariners stash him at Triple-A Tacoma so that he can hit .350 and stay on the Major League Baseball list of “top” prospects. There is no rush, as Franklin will not be arbitration-eligible until 2017. At this point, Franklin may actually be more valuable in the minor leagues where he does not have to show that he can actually play at the big league level.