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December 8, 2009 at 1:09 PM

Boras on Sirius XM Radio: several teams including Seattle still interested in Adrian Beltre

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Thought I’d throw this out there, since it’s been more than 15 hours since Adrian Beltre declined Seattle’s offer of arbitration with nary a word from his camp.
Beltre’s agent, Scott Boras, went on the MLB Home Plate show on Sirius XM Radio earlier today with hosts Steve Davis and Jim Bowden. He was asked about a number of his clients, including third baseman Beltre and the reason why he declined the M’s offer of arbitration.
“You have Beltre who’s averaging 25 to 30 home runs in Seattle. He is the best defensive third baseman in Major League Baseball. He’s 30 years old and third baseman, as you know, play at high levels at older ages. So there’s a lot of interest in Adrian Beltre. He has a lot of choices. And, certainly, Seattle is one of those teams that continues to show interest in him. And so he’s a young man that few teams have and we’re certainly going to evaluate the marketplace for him.”
I’m sure the M’s would love to secure Beltre at a bargain basement rate, but not for what Boras is going to be seeking. Like we said this morning, this ship appears to have sailed. But thought I’d throw the Boras remarks out there for you.
The trades earlier today of Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson end a couple of avenues of pursuit the M’s had headed down in looking to fill holes. Now, they’re on to other plans. As we discussed yesterday, this is what good teams do. You don’t always wind up with the targets you covet and have to have fallback plans.

We’ve heard some new names thrown around in the hitting department. The latest rumors have the M’s looking at Marlon Byrd and Mike Cameron as possibilities for the left field spot. Larry Stone just talked to Cameron’s agent and will have a blog post up shortly.
That follows the pattern we’ve seen with the team’s pursuit of Jason Bay — going after the right handed bat for left field, which allows Mike Saunders to stick around in a platoon while the M’s seek a lefty bat for the first base job. Byrd put up an .808 OPS last season with Texas, seeing the bulk of his hitting time at the clean-up spot and No. 6 spots. He produced his best numbers in the No. 4 position.
Cameron had a .795 OPS, hitting mainly out of the fifth and sixth spots, though he struggled at No. 5 compared to No. 6.
Remember, the M’s are seeking guys for the middle of the order.
Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu knows Byrd well from his Texas days, while Cameron is obviously a known commodity to Seattle fans. He also continues to play excellent defense — better than Byrd — at this stage of his career.
Remember, though, that Cameron earned $10 million last season and put up decent numbers all around. His asking price this year likely won’t be in the bargain range. Byrd was the better hitter and earned only $3 million last season.
Obviously, numbers last season may have no bearing on what a guy will make in 2010. But remember, if the Mariners try to land either player, they won’t be looking to break the bank. They could easily throw $10 million-plus at Bay and get a much better power hitter, if a lesser defender. In Cameron’s case, it will be interesting to see how much of a pay cut he’d be willing to take and whether he’d even want back into the AL at age 37.
But this is how fluid situations unfold. If one target becomes too elusive, you look at other choices. I’d be surprised to see a Cameron or Byrd signing happen here. Especially Cameron, who, because of his age, could be destined to stay on the market into the New Year while teams wait for prices to fall. Byrd is only 32 and could be seen as a longer-term prospect for some team’s outfield.
Anyhow, still waiting on the Chone Figgins announcement. I suppose we could go back to our hotel to watch TV, but we’re going to do a few more rounds on the floor to try to figure out what’s going on with the team.

Comments | Topics: Chone Figgins


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