The big-spending Seattle Mariners have been awfully quiet in recent weeks, and they could be in the mix for one of the best position players remaining on the free agent market.
The Mariners already inked a huge deal with Robinson Cano and also made some low-risk, high-reward moves with the additions of Corey Hart and Logan Morrison. These three players add some much-needed offense to a team that desperately needs it, but there is still one player that could add even more scoring power to the organization.
That player is former Texas Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz. The 33-year-old still hasn’t signed a new deal after declining a qualifying offer extended by the Rangers and while Safeco Field isn’t a hitters’ park, Cruz could thrive as he has been one of the best hitters in MLB in recent years.
Cruz has gone deep at least 22 times in each of the last five years, and even though all of his statistics need to be taken with a grain of salt after he served a 50-game suspension last year due to being linked to the Biogenesis scandal, his quality is undeniable. The Mariners might try to wait to make an offer but if they are able to land him, he would add another power threat to an offense that qualified as one of the worst in the AL last year.
The Mariners already surrendered a pick for Cano and based on how they have played their cards this offseason, it seems unlikely that they will avoid dropping another to land Cruz. Seattle was reportedly interested in Shin-Soo Choo before he signed with the Rangers and if they can get Cruz, they would end up signing a cheaper, more powerful player that would boost the lineup even more.