The Seattle Mariners are in full-fledged rebuilding mode. The trade that sent Ichiro to the Yankees only confirmed that, and fans can expect General Manager Jack Zduriencik to unload other veteran players in the next few days leading up to the trade deadline.
As evidenced by the poor attendance this season, many fans have tired of watching a young team struggle. Here are a few reasons M's fans should stay on board and support the young, up-and-coming squad.
Realistically, the Mariners have few players which other MLB teams will be pursuing. Felix Hernandez will always be a hot commodity, but Seattle should be able to lock up the core of their young talent for the next five years fairly easily. That bodes well for the future success of the franchise.
According to Keith Law, the Mariners have the eleventh-best farm system in baseball.
The team will only get younger as veterans like Chone Figgins and Jason Vargas depart, and Jack Z stocks the minor leagues with players loaded with potential.
Fans need to understand that the team, in all likelihood, won't be a playoff contender—let alone win a World Series—for at least a few seasons.
It's been over a decade since the M's went to the postseason, but the players and coaches know the situation. So fans should be excited knowing the team will only get better for the next few seasons.
There's plenty to be excited about in Seattle, with young players like Kyle Seager and Michael Saunders in the middle of breakout seasons. Casper Wells has been surprising and exciting to watch. And Jesus Montero, despite his youth, is sure to be a home run machine someday soon.
Consistency is the biggest issue for Seattle at this point. As the young players progress and team chemistry gets stronger, the Mariners will only improve.