Mariners Mini Morsels: December 14

Robinson Cano: A lot like Rodney Dangerfield in exactly one way

At his news conference in Seattle on Thursday, Cano was critical of the Yankees, saying: “I didn’t feel respect. I didn’t get respect from them, and I didn’t see any effort.” New York’s final offer was $175 million over seven years. “We made an offer we were comfortable with making. It fell far short of obviously where Seattle was,” [Brian] Cashman said. “So, in terms of respect, they showed a lot more respect financially than we did.” Source: Associated Press via The Japan News

 

According to sources, Steubenville native Rich Donnelly has been named the manager of the Seattle Mariners Triple A affiliate – the Tacoma Rainiers. He signed a two-year deal and will also be a spring training coordinator for the Mariners.

Donnelly has been manager of the Brooklyn Cyclones, the New York-Penn League short season affiliate of the New York Mets since 2011. In November, former Pittsburgh Pirates manager and Detroit Tigers hitting coach Lloyd McClendon was named manager of the Mariners. McClendon and Donnelly have a connection through the Pirates coaching staff and during McClendon’s playing days in the early 1990s, Donnelly was on staff with now-retired Major League manager Jim Leyland. Source: Weirton Daily Times

 

As soon as Friday’s news conference was over, Morrison changed his Twitter handle from @LoMoMarlins to @CupOfLoMo in deference to Seattle’s coffee culture. Source: Greg Johns at MLB

 

For those wondering, Logan will wear #20, Corey #27. Nick Franklin and Taijuan Walker have requested new numbers for next season. From: Seattle Mariners

 

RHP Taijuan Walker switches from number 27 to number 32. Last worn by RHP Jeremy Bonderman in 2013. From: MLB Jersey Numbers

 

Mariners note that Nick Franklin and Taijuan Walker had already requested new numbers, so no messages should be read into Hart, LoMo numbers. From: Greg Johns at MLB.com

 

WELP RT @tai_walker: Oh I didn’t know I gave up my number??? Hmmmm. From: Scott Weber at Lookout Landing

 

New manager Lloyd McClendon said it’s too early to say exactly where his new additions will fit in defensively, but he’s happy to have the potential of a couple bigger bats. “We got two quality players that are very versatile,” the skipper said. “And we have a DH situation that will be rotational. That gives us the opportunity to keep everybody healthy. It’s a unique dynamic. We’ll sit down and figure out how it all works in Spring Training. But when you have quality players, that’s a good problem to have.” Source: Greg Johns at MLB

 

If you’re thinking Nelson Cruz is going to end up with the Seattle Mariners, you’re not alone. Plenty of baseball people have the same idea. In fact, it’s a marriage that makes so much sense it’s surprising it hasn’t happened already. At this point, that’s where lots of the smart money is going. Source: Richard Justice at MLB.com

(Editors note: FML)

AL West Commentary

Oakland Athletics — Here’s another team that just made out its checklist, then roared in and got things done: Gladly took on Baltimore’s salary dump (in a fascinating role reversal), in Jim Johnson, who figures to be the president of the O.co. Coliseum Fan Club. … Traded for Padres set-up whiz Luke Gregerson to further deepen one of this sport’s best bullpens. … Overpaid Kazmir to balance out this rotation. … Kept on adding depth by reeling in Craig GentryNick Punto and Drew Pomeranz. “Man, that’s a good team,” said one NL exec. “They were good before, and they got better, with all they’ve done to solidify their team. Right now, they’re clearly the favorites in the AL West.” Source: Jason Stark at ESPN [Insider needed and recommended]

 

The Astros probably won’t contend in 2014. They’re still at least a year or two away from hitting the point in their development cycle where the rebuilding process can start to pay off with heady results in the majors. Paying Choo perhaps $20 million in 2014 would re-energize the fan base, but it likely doesn’t make the Astros immediate contenders. Not on its own. He’s already 31 years old, to boot. If the Astros were to spend that much money, signing a rare 25-year-old free agent, like Japanese right-hander Masahiro Tanaka if he becomes available, arguably makes more sense. Tanaka wouldn’t cost a draft pick, either.

The Astros have nonetheless been tied to Choo, even before the offseason began, because he can help them. Because he’s not Robinson Cano-expensive and he’s a really good player and the Astros at some point need to sign some really good players to establish some credibility. Choo would make the Astros better and they have a need. Signing him would mean Robbie Grossman could become something of a fourth outfielder, or insurance if George Springer struggled upon arriving to the majors. It would make it easier to flip Grossman or Dexter Fowler in a trade at some point, too. But the Astros ultimately have lots of needs, and throwing a lot of money at any one player this winter probably doesn’t fit the plan. Source: Evan Drellich at the Houston Chronicle

 

So they said

“It was very, very important for us to get a right-handed hitter and Corey fit that bill,” Zduriencik said. “Then when Logan became available, that happened real quick. Honest to God, it was one conversation. I texted them and said I’d have interest in Logan Morrison and [Miami GM Dan Jennings] texted back and said ‘Carter Capps.’ “We called each other and had a five-minute conversation, and consummated the deal. As much as I did not want to trade Carter, because we love the upside that kid has, I also felt it was important to get a player that  is 26 years of age and has the offensive prowess this guy potentially has, and he’s healthy.” Source: Greg Johns at MLB

 

Mariner’s potential off-season targets

The plan for LHP Dallas Braden is to hold a showcase for teams in January. He had shoulder surgery in 2012. Susan Slusser at the San Francisco Chronicle

 

That’s odd

Ranking MLB managers by . . . handsomeness. Well I suppose somebody had to have had too much spare time and/or too much to drink to consider ranking managers this way. Craig Calcaterra at Hardball Talk has gone and done it here.

 

Best thing learned @ Winter Meetings comes from Mark DeRosa: Mark Buehrle has faced 12,021 batters and never shaken off a catcher’s sign. From: Peter Gammons

 

Perhaps this particular domino was set up well in advance of the unexpected column by Geoff Baker, but the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) just announced that Jack Zduriencik will be a speaker at the 2014 Analytics Conference in Phoenix, Arizona in March. Interesting timing, yeah? Source: Bill Baer at Hardball Talk

 

Draft and Prospects

First-Year Player Draft experts, Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo, take their first crack at projecting how the top 10 selections in 2014 will unfold. The Mariners pick 6th, so the following are their predictions to be picked at 5th, 6th and 7th, making them possible M’s targets. You can read all their picks here. Source: Jim Callis at MLB.com

 

5. Twins
Callis: Alex Jackson, C/OF, Rancho Bernardo HS, San Diego  — With Joe Mauer moving to first base, Jackson would be a nice fit; Minnesota also could use his power.
Mayo: Tyler Beede, RHP, Vanderbilt  — A former first-round pick back in 2011, look for Beede to answer questions about his command this spring and be among the top college arms taken in June.

6. Mariners
Callis: Trea Turner, SS, North Carolina State  — Seattle has young middle infielders, but Turner’s speed/bat/defense combo will be too much to ignore.
Mayo: Jacob Gatewood, SS, Clovis (Calif.) HS — The power is more than legit, but there are some questions about the hit tool … not enough to keep him out of Top 10 consideration.

7. Phillies
Callis: Jacob Gatewood, SS, Clovis (Calif.) HS — Philadelphia isn’t afraid to gamble on upside; could opt for Gatewood’s massive power or Michael Gettys’ all-around package.
Mayo: Michael Gettys, OF, Gainesville (Ga.) HS — The Phils have taken a high schooler with their first pick in each of the last six Drafts. They seem to like toolsy position players and Gettys fits that description perfectly.

 

By The Numbers

Fun with numbers: The M’s will pay Cano nearly $100M more to play 10 years than the Rays will pay Longoria to play the 1st 16 yrs of his career. From: Gabe Kapler

 

Alumni News

Was asked about Mike Carp as 1B trade target for Astros, but the Astros and Red Sox have not talked. He wouldn’t come cheaply, either. From: Evan Drellich at the Houston Chronicle

 

Farm Report

Mariners Nate Tenbrink 2-4, HR, 2R, 2RBI for Bravos de Margarita. In 4 games he is 4-12, HR, 2B, 5R, 2RBI, SB, 2BB, 4K. From: Mariners Minors