A look back at the Mariners’ 37 trades under GM Jerry Dipoto
Once again there will be plenty of unfamiliar faces in the Mariners’ spring training clubhouse. Of the 61 players invited to camp in 2016, only 17 of them are on the 2017 spring training roster.
Offseason No. 2 for Jerry Dipoto is all but complete and the 40-man roster and the depth brought in to augment it seem to better resemble the vision that the Mariners general manager laid out for the organization upon his arrival in September of 2015. Who are these guys and how did they get here? Well, the majority via one of the 37 trades Dipoto has made in the last year and a half.
Here’s what jumps out when looking back at those trades:
-Dipoto has traded 53 players for 42 players.
-Of the 42 players acquired, 18 are no longer in the organization.
-Dipoto has made multiple trades in the same day four times this offseason.
-Dipoto has made deals with 16 of the other MLB 29 clubs.
-In the division, Dipoto has made three trades with the Athletics and two trades with the Rangers yielding three regulars. He has not done deals with the Astros or Angels.
-The Dodgers, Braves and Rays are tied for the most (four) trades with the Mariners since Dipoto’s arrival. Sixteen player were involved in the deals with the Rays, fourteen with the Braves and seven with the Dodgers.
-Despite dismal farm-system rankings, Dipoto has still managed to turn 38 minor leaguers into:
- An every-day centerfielder: Leonys Martin;
- Notable contributors in 2016: relievers Nick Vincent and Evan Scribner;
- Useful-at-times arms pieces: Joaquin Benoit, Drew Storen, Wade LeBlanc;
- Expected regulars in 2017: utility man Danny Valencia, left-hander Drew Smyly;
- Expected ’17 contributors: OF Ben Gamel, utility man Taylor Motter and a slew of arms;
- One rather sizable miss: Adam Lind.
-Trivia question: Which player was traded from then months later acquired by the Mariners?
-The Blue Jays and Dodgers (Carlos Ruiz trade aside) have been the “HELP!” team so far with Dipoto acquiring both depth and in-season emergency pitching (Joe Wieland, Zach Lee, Wade LeBlanc, Drew Storen and Pat Venditte).
-Seven of the eight players exchanged in the three trades with the Orioles were major leaguers.
-Somehow the Mariners have sent four pitchers to the Braves.
-For the future file, and the not-so-distant future in the case of the Mariners, their two deals with the Yankees. Young players for young players with Gamel and left-hander James Pazos having an opportunity to contribute in 2017.
The Mariners’ roster overhaul over the last two years has been sweeping. Just eight players remain from the 40-man roster Dipoto inherited. He has stated, and displayed, his preferred route in roster building to be either through organizational development or trade. To that end, the Mariners signed just two free agents: relievers Casey Fien and Marc Rzepczynski, to their 40-man roster this offseason.
While there does not appear to be interest in any of the remaining free agents on the market, trades during spring training are hardly out of the ordinary for any team, let alone a Dipoto team. Opportunities arise, both early and late in spring training. Trade No. 38 could be just around the corner.