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Daily coverage of the Mariners during the season and all year long.

December 7, 2011 at 2:35 PM

Erik Bedard goes to Pirates for one year, $4.5 million

Still waiting on the Prince Fielder front. For now, the Marlins appear to have lost out to the Cardinals on Albert Pujols, but just signed free agent starter Mark Buehrle for four years, $58 million (according to Ken Rosenthal of Fox), so it remains to be seen whether the Fish want to jump in on Fielder as well. The video above was shot live during Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen’s meeting with reporters this afternoon. At about the 6 minute, 20-second mark, he is told about the Buehrle signing by reporters. His reaction was quite amusing.

One thing the Buehrle signing does is potentially limit the Marlins’ total cash pool, so it’s possible they won’t be able to throw an eight-year, or 10-year offer at Fielder. That would seem to help the Mariners from a competitive standpoint.
I asked team president Chuck Armstrong in the hallway today whether GM Jack Zduriencik will at least have the same payroll as last year to compete with. Armstrong would not comment.
A year ago, at the winter meetings in Orlando (see video), he went out of his way to tell reporters that payroll was not going down and that Zduriencik had up to the 2010 amount to spend. Why the difference a year later? No idea. It might be wise not to read too much into it. Just letting you know about it, that’s all.

In other news, Erik Bedard agreed to a one-year, $4.5 million deal with Pittsburgh today, which should surprise nobody who has been paying attention to what’s gone on with the team since August.

Mariners manager Eric Wedge, who had a nice lunch with some of us media members today, was very clear down the stretch and at season’s end that he needs guys he can count on for a full season. He wants his younger players to understand that they have to take care of themselves physically and be able to make it through a full six months.
Bedard simply can’t do that. He keeps getting hurt. Not his fault, but that’s the way it is. For whatever reason, he hasn’t been able to make it through a complete season. This year, he appeared to run out of steam for the Red Sox down the stretch and that was after a long mid-summer layoff with the M’s due to a knee injury.
It would be tough for Wedge and others to keep preaching to young players about the need to “finish” and then watch his front office go out and sign a guy who has shown time and time again that he can’t.
For whatever reason — not all his fault, maybe none of it his fault — Bedard can’t make it through a season healthy and rarely makes it through entire games. That’s not what the M’s have told their players they want.
So, Bedard was never coming to Seattle. Especially not for $4.5 million. Wish him luck with the Pirates. Better luck at getting through the year.
But that Seattle ship sailed a long, long time ago.



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