Mariners Mini Morsels: August 27

Scott Miller, Senior Baseball Columnist at CBS Sports, paints a pretty dysfunctional portrait of the Angels’ front office in an article entitled “Angels tense times nearly included Pujols-Hunter fight in 2012.”  Miller lays much of the blame at owner Arte Moreno’s feet, stating:

“Though he has spent millions on players, including a record $153 million on this year’s payroll, many people both inside and outside of the Angels organization agree that Moreno’s reign of terror has created obstacles not only impossible for the club to overcome, but ones that have shifted the Angels into reverse.  When the decision was made to pursue Vernon Wells from Toronto before the 2011 season, a move Scioscia is said to have endorsed, it was Moreno, one source says, who threatened then-GM Tony Reagins with a firing if Reagins didn’t consummate the deal within 24 hours. Moreno is described as being chapped at having lost free agent Adrian Beltre to the Rangers roughly two weeks earlier, and that helps explain why, in an agreement that utterly stunned almost everybody in the game, the Angels agreed to pay all but $5 million of the $86 million to a player that Toronto was so eager to offload that the Jays surely could have been persuaded to pay millions more.

‘Arte needs to stay out of the baseball business,’ one baseball person says. ‘Arte thinks he knows the game. He doesn’t know the game. He only knows the money, the business side.’ ”

 

WEEI.com columnist Alex Speier—in an article about the Red Sox big trade with the Dodgers last year—noted:

“The team had reached the conclusion that it was not going to deal top prospects for anything short of a massive return. ‘We’d made the decision long term, we were just going to need to start holding on to [top prospects] and figuring out what they could do,’ said one team official. “Instead of picking the right guy, keep them all in the tub and let them decide for us. Back when we were good, that’s what we did.’ “

There’s a lesson there for the Ms.

 

Alumni News

The Orioles announced that they have traded Freddy Garcia to the Braves in exchange for cash considerations, MLB Trade Rumors reports.  The veteran will report to Triple-A Gwinnett, according to a press release from the Braves. Garcia, 36, was optioned from the majors to the club’s Triple-A affiliate back in late June. After giving the idea some thought, Garcia opted to stay in the Baltimore organization rather than try his luck elsewhere.

In total, the right-hander posted a 5.77 ERA with 4.4 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9 in ten starts and one relief appearance for Baltimore this year.  Across 13 starts at Triple-A Norfolk, Garcia had a much stronger 2.84 ERA with 6.7 K/9 and 1.6 BB/9.  Today’s move comes on the heels of word that Brandon Beachy will be visiting Dr. James Andrews on Monday.

 

On the farm 

Dominican native Abe Almonte came to the Ms from the Yankees for Sean Green in February this year.  He started the year in Jackson, and after 102 AB was promoted to Tacoma, where he has added another 312 AB.  The 5’9” 205 pound outfielder is speedy, having stolen 24 bases so far this season, while he’s slashed .297/.393/.476/.869, with 47 BB and 63 SO.

 

Mariner’s potential off-season targets

David DeJesus was placed on waivers by the Cubs this week, claimed by the Nationals, and then waived again by them. He finally seems to have found at least a temporary home with the Rays. According to MLB Trade Rumors:

“In 322 plate appearances this season, the 33-year-old DeJesus is batting .247/.327/.397. Nearly all of his damage has come against right-handed pitching, as evidenced by his .264/.346/.438 batting line against opposite-handed pitching. Ultimate Zone Rating has graded his center field defense as a positive this season (The Fielding Bible has not), which is a rarity, considering his -0.6 career UZR/150 in center. Both metrics suggest that he’s a plus corner defender.  DeJesus is in the final season of a two-year, $10MM contract that he signed with the Cubs prior to the 2012 campaign, though the Rays will hold a $6.5MM club option on him with a $1.5MM buyout.”

Adam Kilgore in The Washington Post writes:

“[Nats GM] Mike Rizzo did not rule out trying to acquire DeJesus again. The Rays will almost certainly decline the $6 million option they hold for DeJesus in 2014. If he becomes a free agent, the Nationals will ‘most definitely’ try to sign him, Rizzo said. He told DeJesus as much when they spoke this morning.”

DeJesus will not require a draft pick or huge/long contract to sign and would be a good platoon partner against RHPs.

 

Referring to the Vargas-Morales trade, Sports Press NW noted:

[Batting .302 (37/122) since the All-Star break, Morales has provided the Mariners exactly the boost the bargained on, Friday night’s 2-0 loss in Eric Wedge’s return notwithstanding. Vargas hasn’t reciprocated on behalf of the Angels. He’s made only 17 starts because he sat out seven weeks due to a blood clot in his armpit, which was surgically removed June 26.  When he has pitched, Vargas has managed a 7-5 record, but his ERA is up over last year and so is his WHIP.  He was good enough to beat the Ms Saturday at Safeco Field. Vargas will be a free agent this winter and has only a handful of starts remaining to demonstrate he’s worthy of the types of deals — roughly $50 million over four years — pitchers of his caliber and experience have typically received in recent years.]

 

Factoids

The Dodgers shut out a team from Boston for the first time since 1952. That was versus the Boston Braves … in Vin Scully’s 3rd season as broadcaster.  ESPN Stats & Info

 

At the Saturday Rainiers game, the San Diego Chicken made one of just two 2013 appearances for the semi-retired mascot. TheNewsTribune

 

The Babe Ruth Award is given annually to the Major League Baseball (MLB) player with the best performance in the postseason. Joe Page of the New York Yankees was the first winner of the Babe Ruth Award. In all, members of the Yankees have won the award sixteen times. Luis Tiant is the only winner of the Babe Ruth Award to play for the World Series-losing team. Two players, Sandy Koufax and Jack Morris, have won the award twice.  Wikipedia

 

Billy Hatcher holds the record for the highest BA in a World Series at .750 in 15 AB in 1990.  Babe Ruth is second with .625 in 17 AB in 1928 and Hideki Matsui is third at .615 in 14 PA in 2009.  Baseball Reference