4 Reasons the Seattle Mariners Will Never Trade King Felix Hernandez
The Seattle Mariners have one of the best pitchers in the league, but that doesn't stop news outlets from consistently speculating about a possible trade to a major market team like the New York Yankees. This type of chatter will typically start a month or two before the trade deadline and continue well into the offseason.
A trade seems to make perfect sense to everybody else, but for those who actually want the Mariners to win something, dealing Felix is not an option. Is there a scenario where the Seattle leadership could be enticed into dealing their ace?
Many fans hope that they never pull the trigger.
Here are four reasons that the Mariners will never trade King Felix.
He Is Actually Happy
There seems to be this general assumption in professional sports that all athletes desire to eventually graduate to the marquee clubs.
Could it be that Felix Hernandez actually likes the Pacific Northwest and wants to stay for a long time? Happiness with Seattle is something that King Felix has reiterated a number of times during his career.
A player can certainly change their mind and get tired of the same old office, but for now, Hernandez appears to want Seattle as much as they want him.
If you're in the front office, isn’t this what you want in a star player? When your biggest asset is content, you should try to preserve that state of mind as long as you can, because there may come a day when he starts to have other goals.
The Fans Would Rebel
What would happen if the Mariners traded King Felix? Would there be a full-scale rebellion? A boycott of Safeco Field?
Seattle is having a hard enough time drawing fans as it is, and sadly the M’s only posted a crowd of 21,889 for the King’s perfect game.
Of course, the Mariners are somewhat famous for trading icons and fan favorites. Ken Griffey Jr., Randy Johnson were traded and Alex Rodriguez allowed to leave as a free agent despite all having plenty of production left in the tank.
Granted, you could certainly argue that none of those players seemed to embrace Seattle with the same enthusiasm of Felix Hernandez.
Return on Investment
If the Mariners were to trade Felix Hernandez, they might as well post a permanent sign that indicates the team is still under construction.
Trading King Felix would signal that the Mariners are always going to be in rebuilding mode. The target of being competitive in 2015 would be pushed back to 2018, and then to 2021.
What would they conceivably get in return? The usual package of prospects that may or may not pan out?
If you follow baseball, you know that these deals can be a major risk. While Hernandez is a proven commodity who is in the prime of his career, trading him would not necessarily yield players who are proven stars.
Allowing for a Legacy
Call me sentimental, but would it be so wrong for a team to keep a star for their entire career?
The game has clearly changed, and few players stick with one team over the long haul. Still, wouldn’t it be something special for Hernandez jerseys to always be current in Seattle?
Obviously, baseball is a business. Everyone associated with the Mariners is delivering the right statements at the moment, but things can change quickly in professional sports. Maybe Felix will eventually end up on the trading block. However, for the sake of the Mariners and the competitive balance of the game, I hope he joins Edgar Martinez on the relatively short list of career Mariners.
The King should keep his capital firmly situated in the Emerald City.