Sunday, December 16, 2007

Mariners after Blanton?

I've heard people throwing this around for quite awhile, but didn't give much thought to it. I figured Oakland GM Billy Beane wouldn't trade within the division, but Buster Olney reports that the Mariners are pushing hard for Joe Blanton. The price? Adam Jones.

My first thoughts on this were against the trade. While many doubt Jones' superstar abilities, it is still scary to trade him to a division rival. However, this could be a very good trade for the Mariners.

Blaton is young at just 27 years old, cheap as he made just $380,000 last season, and durable. He pitched 230 innings last season and right around 200 the two seasons prior. Blanton's stats are comparable, if not better, to Angels' ace John Lackey through age 26. Blanton has posted ERAs under 4 in two of his three full seasons. If Seattle did decide to acquire Blanton, it would give them a very capable pitcher to slot behind Felix Hernandez, and they'd be able to keep Brandon Morrow, Jeff Clement and Wladimir Balentien.

A possible rotation could look like this:
  1. Felix Hernandez
  2. Joe Blanton
  3. Miguel Batista
  4. Jarrod Washburn
  5. Brandon Morrow or free agent

Sending Adam Jones to a division rival is a stiff price to pay, but could be well worth it. If the Mariners are truly trying to win right now then this could be a good move. Oakland is completely rebuilding, and they already have a good young team after the Dan Haren trade, however, they won't be ready to compete for a few more seasons, even with the addition of Jones. That would give the Mariners a couple seasons to try and win and develop Wladimir Balentien or another young outfielder before Adam Jones could really hurt us at all.

There is a chance that Adam Jones wouldn't hurt us all that much anyway. There has been a lot of talk doubting his superstar potential. Some have compared him to Ken Griffey Jr, but I think he maxes out somewhere between Mike Cameron and Torii Hunter. The bottom line is you don't know how Jones will turn out, so you might as well trade him for a top starter while his value is high. It's a risk sending him to Oakland, but you still maintain a good core of young players by retaining Wladimir Balentien, Brandom Morrow and Jeff Clement.

I think this is a trade worth making, especially if no one else is available at the right price. There is also the chance that Blanton could be had for less, and Jones is just the first name Oakland threw out there. [JO-BLA AD-JON WL-BAL]

It's a good thing Jason Ellison is no longer with the Mariners. I wonder if Ichiro has anything to say about it.


Anonymous said...

...and Blanton been a bit of a Mariner killer in the past?

There is a rumor floating around on O's sites that Bavasi has said that he will not trade Jones within the division. Is there any truth to that statement?

Quinn said...

Please no, not Joe Blanton. That's not exactly a clubhouse chemistry builder... more like clubhouse asbestos.

Dustin said...

To the anonymous poster: Yes, it is true, which is why I doubt this deal will go through. If not Jones, it would cost Balentien then. Fuck that!

Walrus said...

Beane & A's FO are much, much better than Bavasi & M's FO on evaluating talent...especially young talent. The A's are trading Blanton because the A's FO has decided that he won't develop into a solid 2nd starter.
Please God, do not let Bavasi and Beane trade with each other.

Christopher Meer said...

I think we need to stand pat, at this point in time. We didn't catch the free agent fish we wanted too, so the best thing we could do at this point is let some of our better prospects get some time in the show.
If our FO would go to the doctor for this cranial-rectal inversion problem, they would see that some of the better teams in the league,(excluding the Yankees, of course), are using more and more homegrown, or traded for talent, rather than relying on the FA pool.

ronen said...

I think we should stand pat and get Bedard, but only if we get a window to sign him to an extension. He is the kind of guy that would totally screw us in two years. But I really like the idea of having bedard and felix at the top of our rotation.

Jon Shields said...

ronen: I don't see the extension window working out. That was Santana's whole thing, but Bedard wants to test free agency. It could be just because he's with the Orioles, but he has said he'll test the free agent market, regardless of who he's playing for.