Friday, October 28, 2005

To keep Eddie, or not to keep Eddie? That my friends it the question

One of the first issues surrounding the mariners this off-season is what to do with team closer and partial team leader Eddie Guardado. Eddie's contract has a team option for the 06' season and if the team decides not to pick that option up then Eddie himself has an option he is able to pick up at a lesser dollar amount. I believe the dollar amounts to be around 6 million for the team option and around 4 million for the player option. My numbers may be a bit off but they are in the ballpark.

Eddie has been a valuable commodity for the mariners sporting a more than serviceable 2.71 era, 48 strike outs in 56 1/3 innings, and a solid 36 saves for a team that won only 69 games. Folks he saved over half the mariner’s wins this season. That’s nasty, simply nasty.
The problem with Eddie is that you really don’t know how long his shoulder is going to hold out. This year he looked fine. But a year prior there was a point when many felt he would never pitch again. He has a tear in his rotator cuff. Eddie assured everyone via the radio waves that he feels fine. However, they are going to take a closer look just to make sure.

The question begins, is Eddie worth the risk? And for what dollar amount makes that risk worth while? I for one do not think that 6 million over the next year is worth the risk for, lets face it, a team that is most likely not going to be in contention. I think the mariners are feeling this way. Rumors are spurring that they will not pick up the team option on Eddie. Additionally it is believed that the mariners do not want Eddie to pick up his option and in return they would work something out with him for possibly more years at less per year. This may bee a good thing but what if the shoulder isn’t ok, do we want to be on the hook for a contract that will see no on the field results.

First off if you, as the mariners, had no intention of picking that team option up, and to top that off did not want Eddie to pick up his end of the deal why did you not move him at the deadline to a contending team that could have helped you build for the future?? Hello, you can not tell me that Boston did not want a left handed closer as dominant as Eddie was in the first half of the season. Just one team that comes to mind when I ponder this quandary.

Secondly what makes you believe that Eddie would be willing to work out a deal less than the two potential ones he already has on the table? From everything I have heard about Eddie, via interviews, articles, and his demeanor on the field it becomes clear to me that Eddie is a stand up loyal guy. And perhaps this is why the mariners feel they can work something out with him. Eddie has said its not the money that is important but rather the respect a-team shows him and that is a stand up thing to say.

So let’s say hypothetically the mariners let Eddie walk. Who rolls into that closer roll? The popular answer is "My Boy" Rafael Soriano. They guys has all the tools to become a dominant closer, however he needs time. Remember this kid has only been pitching for a short time career wise as well as the fact he is coming off Tommy John Surgery. Lets give him a full season before we throw him into a pressure-cooking situation.

Here’s the overall deal. Eddie needs to come back. The dollars and terms of the deal are what are in question. Is 4 million for one year worthwhile? Yes I believe it is. By locking him into the one year 4 million dollar deal you save 2 million and you still have him as trade bait come the 06' trade deadline. Especially is he can prove to go through the first season with no ill effects from his shoulder. In fact I would almost insist that you deal him this year if you sign him to a one-year deal or he picks his option up.

He is a boisterous (good word) leader that exudes fire and emotion on the mound, something I think the team lacks in almost every other position. When was the last time someone other than Eddie showed any sort of emotion on the field, being up set by an error, excited by a amazing catch or celebrating a game breaking hit. He is a positive influence in the clubhouse, something these young guys need to see.

I'd like to hear from the Magic Faithful. What’s the consensus here is Eddie worth the risk, the mariner fan believes so.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Not wasting any time....

The World Series hasn't been over for 24 hours, and the M's already have made their first moves of the offseason. The M's named their new hitting and pitching coaches today. Rafael Chaves is heading up I-5 from Tacoma, and Jeff Pentland is moving from the worst offense team in Kansas City to another crappy offensive team in the Mariners.

I like the Chaves move if for no other reason than he and Felix have a good relationship. The Pentland signing is kinda random, but whatever. I like the idea of bringing Tim Wallach on board since he was the guy who worked with Beltre in 2004, but no big deal.

So it begins....who's next?

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Griffey, Cameron,......Jones?

The next great Mariner centerfielder may be being molded in Arizona right now. Adam Jones, the M's 1st-round pick in 2003, has been moved from short stop to centerfield. Yuniesky Betancourt's brilliant play with the big club this year has Jones being moved to the position that George Kenneth owned for so many years in Seattle. His successor, Mike Cameron, wasn't too shabby himself.

An obvious question is what will happen to Jeremy Reed? I'd say move him to left. Would a ball drop in an outfield of Reed, Jones, and Ichiro? Reminds me of the Winn, Cameron, Ichiro outfield of a couple years back.

It's doubtful that Jones will be ready for the big-time in 2006, but it'll be fun to keep an eye on his progress.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

The World Serious

So that this blog doesn't die due to inactivity, I thought it'd be a good idea to talk about something non-Mariner related. We've got a couple of weeks until the Hot Stove is fully heated (right now it's on preheat). So let's talk about the World Series.

I am slow on posting this, but there was a great article on ESPN the other day about how the Astros and White Sox are two teams who have torturous histories, but whose fans haven't whined and complained about it *cough* Red Sox *cough* Cubs *cough*. Because of this, neither of them get the national pub of those other woe is me ballclubs.

I think the trend of the last 2 years is very encouraging for the Mariners. The Red Sox win last year, ending an 86-year drought. The Astros or White Sox will win this year, ending one of their droughts. The Mariners are probably a few notches down the list of teams that need a World Series, but if things keep going this way, we should expect a championship by 2010.

As far as the series itself, I'm not sure where I'm leaning. The Astros have the edge with their starting pitching and bullpen, but the Sox have a better lineup. "They" always say pitching wins championships, so I guess Houston would be the smart pick. But my American League/Freddy Garcia allegiance has me rooting for the Sox.

Go M's!!!!!

Friday, October 21, 2005

Buh Bye Bobby

Here is another Story that came across my desk, You heard it here first!
Bobby Madritch has been claimed off of waivers by the Kansas City Royals. Bavasi said they had no problem with the claim and that they wished bobby the best of luck.
Figuring to be a major part of the 06' rotation the mariner’s are now forced to bring in more pitching help than previously expected!! At least in my opinion they are.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Sweet Lou on the broadcast!!

For the american league championship series our boy Lou Pinella will be doing color comentary. My friends this is comedy gold. I can listen to Lou talk for hours.

Monday, October 10, 2005

AJ Burnett....POST 100!

This is a special moment Mariner Magic faithful. The 100th post and we're still Refusing to Lose!

The Toronto Sun is reporting that the M's will be going after AJ Burnett. They are expecting the asking price to be somewhere around $65 million for 5 years. Yeesh. Is he worth that? I don't know.

In other free agent pitching rumblings, USS Mariner compared Burnett to another highly coveted FA when they looked at him and Kevin Millwood.

Here is my problem with this whole free agent pitching class-I don't like any of them. Burnett, Millwood, Matt Morris, Jeff Weaver, and Jarrod Washburn are the top guys out there. I'm not including Roger Clemens because there's no way that's happening. None of those guys excite me. They're all going to be way overpaid too.

But if I'm Bill Bavasi and since I've come on the team has lost 99 and 93 games, I'm going to try to make a big splash in the offseason. That means bringing in a big-time pitcher to fix a rotation that's a complete mess. I think that can be done, but I'd really feel better about it happening through a trade.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Bryan Price Out

According to today's Seattle Times, Bryan Price is resigning as the M's pitching coach.Check it out

Interesting to note that the article says that Don Baylor is likely out as hitting coach. This is assuming he's hired for one of the six kajillion manager openings.

This is annoying. Now the M's have to spend time, resources, etc. filling out the coaching staff instead of going after players. Hopefully these spots can be taken care of quickly, before the free agent frenzy begins.

Price was a pretty good pitching coach. Anyone who can get through to Lou should be commended. We wish him well wherever his career takes him next.