Just got done talking to Jarrod Washburn, who has a 5 p.m. PDT flight out of here and on to his new Detroit Tigers team. As far as we know, he’s going to be the only Mariners player traded today. No official word yet that the M’s are done, but we’re not hearing anything else yet and GM Jack Zduriencik has a conference call with reporters in a half hour.
I asked Washburn how far along he’d gotten in his talks with the Mariners about a possible extension.
“To the point of ‘Would you be interested in signing something and staying here?’ and I said ‘Yes’ and that’s as far as it got,” he said, “No specifics were ever mentioned or discussed and that was pretty much the end of it.
“They said they’d like to have me back and liked what I’ve done and like everything about me,” he added.
Click here to listen to the question and his full answer.
Washburn said he’d remain open to discussing a longer-term deal with Seattle as a free-agent once the season was done.
He and Zduriencik spoke by phone at length today about “a bunch of different stuff” and he says he’s leaving Seattle with good feelings.
“A lot of things were discussed,” he said.
I asked him whether, in his initial discussions about an extension, he was ever led to believe the team might do something before this season was over.
“They didn’t lead me to believe anything either way,” he said. “Jack just basically expressed that they really liked me and that might be an option. I didn’t think ‘Oh yeah, something’s going to get done’ or “Wait until the end of the season.’ Or anything. I didn’t have a feeling either way.
“It was just talking back and forth. I’m saying ‘I’m interested’ and he’s saying ‘So am I’.”
Washburn added that he’s always felt Safeco Field was the greatest stadium in baseball and that the fans, who seemed to like him more this year than any other in his four with the club, also made it a fun place to play, Washburn said he was pleased he finally offered the team something closer to what it expected with he signed his deal back in 2005.
Overall, he added, this was a much more pleasant experience.
And that’s why he would be open to coming back.
But nothing is certain. And in the end, it just might very well be that Washburn finally won over some fans of the Emerald City just as he was about to be ushered out the door.