We’re well into Day 3 of the baseball winter meetings in Nashville and the Mariners continue to be the team that is most linked to every available hitter out there without actually landing any of them. One that will not be landed is Billy Butler of the Kansas City Royals, unless teams step up their offers to acquire the slugger.
Royals manager Ned Yost would not be talking like that unless he was pretty certain that Butler was staying put. The Royals have talked to several teams about a Butler deal, but, reading between the lines here, it sounds like nobody was willing to step up and meet their rather steep asking price. We got an indication of that from the Mariners yesterday when they suddenly seemed to shift focus from acquring a 1B/DH type and an outfielder and instead are now exploring the two-outfielder scenario we explored in-depth on the blog and in today’s paper.
Speaking of that, we’re still waiting to see whether Jason Bay signs with the Mariners. He’s supposedly got a one-year offer on the table from the Indians and was deep in talks with the Mariners, so that probably won’t take much longer. If not Bay, we’ll have to see what happens with Raul Ibanez.
Another player the Indians look to be competing with the Mariners for? None other than Nick Swisher according to a tweet this morning from ESPN’s Buster Olney. The good news is, if it’s true that Swisher’s wife really likes Seattle, Cleveland will have to step up its game big-time as a city or force the Indians to spend far more money than they probably have to get him.
That last part was a joke. Sort of.