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Mariners GM Dipoto: ‘Not closing the door’ on adding position player before MLB trade deadline

Jerry Dipoto on potential Mariners deals before the trade deadline: "We're certainly looking." (AP)

The market ahead of the July 31 MLB trade deadline didn’t wait for the All-Star break to end before heating up.

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Both superstar shortstop Manny Machado and highly coveted reliever Brad Hand found new homes this week, and while Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto wasn’t involved in either, you can rest assured that it won’t be long before he pulls off his next deal.

“We’re certainly looking. We’ve made a lot of phone calls; we’re on the phones and we’re working them,” Dipoto told Danny, Dave and Moore on Thursday during the weekly Jerry Dipoto Show segment. “Whether we try to find somebody to help our starting staff or our bullpen, we will try it. We’re also not closing the door on the potential of adding the right position player if the opportunity exists there.”

As usual, Dipoto is keeping his options open as it comes to the trade deadline.

“I guess in short we want to get better and we’re trying to find any way we can to help this team out without disrupting the mojo they have in the clubhouse,” he said.

It’s worth keeping in mind that the Mariners are guaranteed to get one big addition to their team in mid-August, too, when Robinson Canó returns from his 80-game suspension. Dipoto said that while he and his team in the front office are looking at potential deadline deals, they are working with the understanding that Canó ’s return (mostly at first base) is imminent.

“Really we’re looking forward to that because we know how much better that makes our offensive club, for sure,” Dipoto said of the end of Canó’s suspension.

Mariners could be in for a busy MLB trade deadline

While Dipoto is looking at all areas to add to the Mariners, he expects the conversation among GMs around the league to center around bullpen pieces.

“There was really only one Manny Machado on the market,” he said. “I don’t know frankly who the next-best position player is that will change his address in this trade market, but there will be multiple trades made that are based around relief pitching.

“I think the more significant deal for the industry was the Indians and the Padres (sending Hand and fellow reliever Adam Cimber to Cleveland) because that probably gets the relief pitcher market moving. My guess is that about 75 percent of the trades that are made as we get through the deadline (will be) based around relief pitchers.”

Dipoto talked about much more in his interview on 710 ESPN Seattle, including his reaction to Jean Segura’s MVP award snub in Tuesday’s All-Star Game. You can listen to the full segment in this podcast.

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