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How the Mariners continued to do ‘the right thing’ at trade deadline

The Mariners' rebuild added more to a rebuild centered around players like J.P. Crawford. (AP)

The Houston Astros bet on themselves with a big deal just before Wednesday’s MLB trade deadline. In a sense, so did the Seattle Mariners.

Drayer: Deadline goes from ‘boring’ to productive for M’s GM Dipoto

The Astros, who entered Thursday with an American League-best 69 wins, added former Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke to their rotation by sending an impressive haul of prospects to the Arizona Diamondbacks. It was a trade that signaled that they’re fully invested in trying to win their second World Series in three seasons.

The Mariners, meanwhile, continued to bet on their future, one they’re hoping will be “cresting” (to borrow a favorite phrase of Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto) right around when the Astros are falling back down in the standings. When Arizona knew it was sending Greinke to Houston, Dipoto was ready to swing a deal to get infield prospect Jose Caballero for pitcher Mike Leake just in the nick of time. And not long before that, Seattle picked up a trio of promising arms for their farm system by sending veteran relievers Roenis Elías and Hunter Strickland to the Washington Nationals.

“The Mariners are doing the right thing,” 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny O’Neil said during Wednesday’s edition of Danny, Dave and Moore. “They’re planning for life after the Astros peak.”

O’Neil added that the Mariners are staying on track with a plan that they believe will eventually put them in a spot similar to where Houston is this year – and he personally can’t wait.

“I long for the day when Seattle’s going to be able to make the addition like the Astros did (with Greinke),” he said. “You cash your chips in, you position yourself (to make a run at the World Series). The Astros know that here in a couple years the bill’s gonna come due and they’re not going to be to pay everybody that they have. This is a window of opportunity that they have and this is how you do it in baseball – you pony up your prospects and get (a player like Greinke).

“… Man, wouldn’t that be fun? You feel that you’ve got a team and now you just add to it? It would be like when the Seahawks traded for Percy Harvin (prior to their 2013 Super Bowl-winning season). You knew they were good and then they add that on top.”

You can hear the full conversation between O’Neil and co-hosts Dave Wyman and Jim Moore in the final segment of this podcast of Wednesday’s show.

More Mariners trade deadline coverage

• Video: Mike Salk & Curtis Rogers on M’s deadline deals
• Scouting reports on Mariners’ four new prospects
• Mike Leake traded to Arizona for prospect Jose Caballero
M’s trade relievers Elías, Strickland to Nats for 3 pitchers