Mariners Insider

Players coming and going at Safeco Field

Post by Larry Larue / The News Tribune on July 30, 2011 at 12:21 pm with 5 Comments »
July 30, 2011 12:21 pm
Doug Fister: If not gifted, tough and smart.

The six-player trade the Seattle Mariners completed with the Detroit Tigers today is probably best explained as – f rom Seattle’s point of view – grabbing prospects for down the line.

The Tigers took right-hander Doug Fister and Doug Pauley, two men who were a big part of the strength of this team. In return, they got a middle-reliever/starting pitcher in left-hander Charlie Furbush and Detroit’s fourth outfielder, right-handed hitter Casper Wells, who will join the Mariners tomorrow.

The key to the deal for Seattle? Third baseman Franicsco Martinez, a 20-year-old in Class AA, and a minor league player to be named later – one of three GM Jack Zduriencik will select in the next few weeks.

“The player to be named is not a throw-in in this deal,” Zduriencik said. “We feel he’ll be a contributor at the big-league level.”

Martinez is batting .282 this season with 14 doubles, four triples, seven home runs and 46 RBI in 91 games – and hit .306 in his last 71 games. A Venezuelan, Martinez played in the 2011 Futures Game earlier this month.

Fister, 27, said today he was ‘excited at the chance to help a team get tot he playoffs and beyond,’ and almost certainly is pleased that the Tigers offense is far more consistent that Seattle’s. Sporting a 3-12 record despite a 3.33 earned run average, Fister’s 1.97 run support is the worst in the majors. Not the most gifted member of Seattle’s rotation, Fister proved himself a smart, tough competitor who pilede up quality starts.

Pauley, 28, has had a breakthrough year out of the bullpen, going 5-4 with a 2.15 ERA. An emotional man, Pauley cried this morning when Mariners teammates surrounded him in the clubhouse.

“I don’t know that I’ve ever been on a team that traded two guys so much a part of the team,” veteran Adam Kennedy said. “It’s a tough time of year, but I hope both of them get into the post-season.”

Zduriencik indicated Furbush would start in Seattle, although manager Eric Wedge seemed more committed to letting the lefty stay in the bullpen for now. In two starts, Furbush was 0-2 in Detroit. In 15 relief appearances, he posted a 2.13 ERA.

Wells, 26, is a right-handed bat who will apparently take at-bats and playing time from Greg Halman, who’s had only 83 at-bat this year with the Mariners and batted .241 in them.

And, if Martinez is Seattle’s third baseman of the future, what happens to Matt Mangini and Alex Liddi, each having solid seasons with the Tacoma Rainiers?

And, just to add to the day, the Mariners brought right-hander Dan Cortes up from Tacoma today, and sent lefty Aaron Laffey down. Seattle will play the Tampa Bay Rays today with a 23-man roster.

So, what do you think?

Leave a comment Comments → 5
  1. ToleratedPrejudice says:

    What happens to Matt Mangini and Alex Liddi?

    They likely will not be able to play for the Mariner’s due to their having Italian heritage.

    Eric Wedge has made disparaging comments about Italian-Americans many times in his career.

    Unfortunately, as shows like “Jersey Shore” and the “Sopranos” so eloquently prove, hating Italian-Americans is acceptable in the United States.

    It’s too bad, too, because the Mariner’s could use the offense.

  2. SandlotSam says:

    It’s probably a good trade for both teams, just have to downshift into wait-and-see mode. It’ll be interesting to find out who the PTBNL is, he’s supposedly no slouch.

    I still don’t know what to make of this season. Was it progress? Was it a farce? Is the franchise still in baseball quicksand? Still time for some interesting talent to emerge either by trade or call-up, but being an M’s fan I no better than to get my hopes up. Go M’s.

  3. PugetSounderforLife says:

    The Italian-American comments by Wedge can be seen where again? Before calling out anyone for prejudicial behavior get your facts straight, cite a link, repeat the quote or shut up. Fister and Pauley are both serviceable pitchers on any MLB staff; Fister as a backend starter and Pauley in long or short relief. Both are replaceable and will be by the M’s. The key in this trade will be Wells performance and the PTNBL; supposedly one of Detroit’s top prospects. So far so good.

  4. My immediate reaction: Awful trade. Fister was a STRONG #3 starter with low salary, & Pauley was our 2nd best reliever.

    I’m very close to getting off the Z bandwagon in a BIG way. We should have been able to get the same players for Vargas alone & they don’t sound like special players anyway.

  5. SharkHawk says:

    I honestly think Z is treading water and trying to save his bald head by going with a “youth movement” that he should have gone with from the get-go, but did NOT. He’s not a very good GM. He struck gold on the Putz trade, but only because Putz got hurt and never was good again.

    We all saw him as a genius on that one. What has he done since? Stupid move after stupid move. He is grasping at straws attempting to get prospects now instead of low risk players with low salaries (a la Cust). He’s putting his career on the line with his new method of acquisition. Acquiring guys who hit well in the minors, but aren’t considered any better prospects than the guys we have (Halman, Carp, etc.) and hoping like crazy that one or two of them pan out. It’s the old “throw it at the wall and see what sticks” mentality. It’s a poor way to run an organization.

    I always liked the Gillick methodology (I know I’m beating a dead horse here… I know I KNOW), but you build a team by getting proven players at certain positions, and then filling in with strong defenders who may or may not hit and realize it will all work. For example, his dealings in Toronto were seen as ludicrous by some (giving up players like McGriff), but in return getting players like Joe Carter and winning consecutive world series. His system works. Beane has been proven as a fraud basically at this point, and that is the system Z seems to be working with. You need to acquire TALENT, not POTENTIAL.

    To put it in terms we can all understand… would you rather have 25 Hyundais (not a bad car at all…. reliable…. does its job… but not some kind of supercar) and hope one of them is a perfect performing car, or would you rather spend your money on one Lexus and 10 Hyundais? Which makes more sense? I say spend money on Lexuses or Ferraris or whatever you want, and surround them with Honda Civics that get the job done. The Civic is reliable, steady, not prone to blowups (Milton BRADLEY), and the Lexus is there to lead the pack (much like Griffey or Edgar were in their heydays in Seattle). Cora, Alex Diaz, Tim Belcher, etc. were our Civics at different times. They went out there when called upon and did their best and found ways to help the team. Then Gillick went and grabbed guys like McLemore, Boone, Olerud and Nelson in ONE off-season for good prices and all of a sudden we set the record for wins.

    Why Howard and Chuck doubted Pat and didn’t give him the payroll and power to see it through makes me sad. Look at how far we’ve fallen since Safeco opened. We might as well still be playing in the Kingdome, or in a retrofitted Qwest field. Seriously. Half a billion dollars in taxpayer cash for THIS? Where’s the promise Howard? YOU PROMISED to field a “COMPETITIVE TEAM”. Competitive with what? I’d be totally unsurprised if the M’s played a 3 game series with the Salt Lake Bees and took 1 out of 3.

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