The Seattle Mariners have always featured strong arms like Felix Hernandez, but lost games because of the lack of quality bats.
That prompted Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik to re-acquire fan favorite Raul Ibanez, and he has delivered. The veteran found the fountain of youth, slugging his way to 24 home runs this season, and his strong play has galvanized the young core Seattle was trying to develop this season.
Run support aren’t a troubling issue in the kingdom these days for King Felix. The star signed a lucrative $175 million contract in the offseason, a move that ensures he will be around for some time. The Mariners are also red-hot in July, breaking out of the All-Star break to a 14-6 record. They’re winners of eight of their last nine games, and the surge has turned the Mariners from sellers into buyers heading into the trade deadline.
Analysts collectively agree that Seattle could benefit from adding another quality bat to the order, but ideally a quality pitcher would be a better move. According to reports, the Mariners sent a ‘high-level’ scout to watch Jake Peavy this week. A move with the Chicago White Sox for Peavy would bolster the Mariners’ lineup, setting them up to make a playoff run in the last few weeks of the season.
With the offense in a groove and the pitching effectively shutting down opposing offenses, it’ll be interesting to see what moves, if any, Zduriencik will make, and how he plans to keep the fledgling core he’s managed to develop intact while also balancing the need for another quality starter.