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Topic: shawn kelley

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February 20, 2013 at 9:43 AM

Mariners are looking at group of four non-premium minor leaguers as return in Mike Carp deal

The Mariners will pick from a list of four lower-level, non-premium minor leaguers as the player-to-be-named in the Mike Carp trade. Photo Credit: AP

Many of you have written in asking who the Mariners are likely to get in the Mike Carp deal. I can tell you that the Mariners are looking to pick from a list of four non-premium minor leaguers, all in the lower levels. In other words, no “A” level or even “B” level prospects. Also, nobody from Class AAA or AA.

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Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik told me he was negotiating with four clubs at one point, then it got down to two at the end. Zduriencik didn’t name the clubs, but we know one was the Boston Red Sox and I’ll assume the Twins were another since they were linked to Carp in various reports.

Anyhow, that’s what you get in deals like this one.


Comments | More in trades | Topics: Jack Zduriencik, Mike Carp, shawn kelley

February 13, 2013 at 4:28 PM

Mariners trade Shawn Kelley to Yankees for minor league outfielder

Mariners relief pitcher Shawn Kelley was traded today for Class AA outfielder Abraham Almonte. Photo Credit: AP

The Shawn Kelley era was officially closed in Seattle today when the Mariners traded the relief pitcher to the New York Yankees for minor league outfielder Abraham Almonte. Kelley had been designated for assignment last week.

The Dominican-born Almonte, 23, was not a top Yankees prospect by any means but does play all three outfield positions and that’s an area where Seattle lacks depth in the upper minors.

Almonte reached Class AA last season and split his time fairly evenly between all three outfield spots.

When you look at the Mariners right now, there aren’t many guys who can play center if needed who aren’t already at the major league level, so yes, this can be considered a depth move. Franklin Gutierrez could be gone in a year and after that, you have Michael Saunders and Casper Wells and not a whole lot on the center field radar in the organization after that.


Comments | More in trades | Topics: abraham almonte, bullpen, kameron loe

February 7, 2013 at 2:37 PM

Felix Hernandez deal still not officially done; Mariners do finally announce Kelly Shoppach move

The Mariners are about to give Felix Hernandez millions more reasons to lift his arms in triumph. Photo Credit: AP

Word is, the Felix Hernandez contract talks are still in their final stages and not officially done. A source told me this within the past hour, but I wouldn’t worry too much about it. This sounds like haggling over last-minute details, not the overall framework of a deal said to be for seven years, $175 million.

Hernandez is the first step — a big one — in what will have to be others by the team if the hope is to contend by 2014 or 2015. The Mariners could win as many as 85 games next season by feasting on the Houston Astros, but they play in an AL West where three other squads could win 95 or more.

Anyhow, we’ll see what else the Mariners do to upgrade long-term once the Hernandez deal becomes official. How are the Mariners going to pay for the Hernandez deal? Well, they’ll be getting the rough equivalent of his yearly salary coming their way soon as part of a new national TV deal, then stand to make an absolute killing in a coule of years on a new local TV deal.

It’s too early to estimate how that deal would compare to the $7 billion signed by the Dodgers recently or whether the overall TV market will change for the worse before the Mariners can do something with their current ROOT Sports contract. One thing to keep an eye on is what happens with bids to obtain a new NBA and NHL team in Seattle. If those teams get here sooner rather than later, it could create competition in the marketplace either by owners of those teams combining to form their own regional sports network (RSN), or another network like Comcast entering the fray to try to buy up rights.

If either were to happen, the market for TV in Seattle could change dramatically. Such a change could prompt the Mariners and ROOT Sports (owned by DirecTV) to get a new TV deal done between them a lot sooner than the 2015 opt-out date the M’s currently have.

In any event, the Mariners stand to make money. Predictions that the bubble is about to burst on the current RSN market in this country have focused more on long-term than the immediate short-term. Nobody really knows. But it’s a pretty safe bet that even with a burst bubble, the Mariners will secure more TV revenue than they currently enjoy and in the process will take the value of their franchise soaring well beyond the $1 billion mark.

For the time being, smaller fish are being fried. The Mariners have finally added catcher Kelly Shoppach as a free agent signing. To clear a roster spot, relief pitcher Shawn Kelley was designated for assignment.

That might be confusing for some, since Kelley just inked a $935,000 deal last week that avoided arbitration. But it becomes less confusing when you consider the team will only owe Kelley one sixth of that amount if he’s released within the next 10 days. Kelley could also be put on outright waivers and claimed, but then the claiming team would owe the entire salary.


Comments | More in Free agents | Topics: bullpen, felix hernandez, kelly stoppach