Thursday, December 23, 2010

Mariners Have "No Interest" in Trading King Felix

To those still harboring hopes that the Yankees might be able to complete a trade for 2010 Cy Young Award winner Felix Hernandez, Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik seems to have other plans.
 “I have no interest in trading Felix,” Seattle GM Jack Zduriencik told the Daily News Wednesday. “He’s a true ace, a true No. 1, and those are difficult to find. We’re very happy to have him here.”
Just for fun, let's compare his statement to the one Dayton Moore made two weeks ago just prior to trading Zach Greinke to the Brewers.
“I haven’t made one call to one organization asking them if they’re interested in Zack Greinke.”
Do you see the difference between the two statements?  While Zduriencik's intentions are very clear with regards to his position on King Felix, Moore's intentions regarding Greinke were carefully crafted and purposely misleading.  There's absolutely nothing wrong with Moore's comments, but it's important to note the differences.  This is a great example of how to wade through the bullshit and double talk most agents, GMs, and owners spew during the Hot Stove season.  

Despite the rampant speculation by Yankee fans and members of the baseball media, I can't think of a single rational reason why the Mariners would be interested in trading away a dominant soon-to-be 25 year old starting pitcher who's under contract with a reasonable salary for another four years.  Let's not forget that he's the reigning Cy Young Award winner, and still has his prime seasons to look forward.

While the Mariners aren't ready to contend at the moment, there's reason to believe they will be by the end of Hernandez's contract.  Zduriencik has built a productive farm system through shrewd trades and well-researched drafts.  Over the next year or two, their farm system will begin to bear fruit (Smoak, Ackley, Pineda).  When it does, they'll be able to combine their youth with an above average revenue stream to target in key free agents to augment the team.  This gives the Mariners an opportunity to remain patient with the rebuilding process, while being able to hold onto their most highly sought after asset.  

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