Before the 2008 regular season, one of the biggest stories in baseball was the blockbuster trade between the Baltimore Orioles and Seattle Mariners. Seattle would receive Bedard, and Baltimore would get Adam Jones, George Sherrill, Chris Tillman, Kam Mickolio, and Tony Butler.
Because of this deal, many analysts predicted the Mariners to have one of the best rotations in the pros, and they picked the M's to finish ahead of the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West Standings.
Boy were they wrong. Here is the current situation for both teams:
- Erik Bedard—He currently holds a record of 4-4, with a 4.26 ERA in 61.1 innings pitched. Who would've thought that Bedard would be 4-4? The way that people were talking about him, most expected him to be 7-1 at the worst. Seattle's offense was supposed to give him more run support than Baltimore did.
- Mariners—As previously stated (and many of us should know), the M's were supposed to finish in first place this season. However, that's not the case. As of June 9, the team sits in last place with a 22-41 record. The offense is not producing, the manager has gone on a tirade, and they have the starting rotation has the worst ERA in the MLB. The team is a complete mess at this point, and now even Erik Bedard has become a name the M's may put on the market at the trade deadline.
- Adam Jones—In his first, full year in the bigs, Jones has surprised many fans by showing them that the future in B-More is bright. Jones is currently hitting .249, with four home runs, 26 RBI, five stolen bases, and 21 runs scored. Not to mention the Gold-Glove caliber defense he is playing in center field. He's already shown that he can be clutch, he's hit a walk-off single and two game-winning home runs. Many O's fans know that they are going to see this kid on the AL All-Star team in a matter of time.
- George Sherrill—Sherrill came over from the Mariners as a lefty specialist/ setup man to their current closer, J.J. Putz. Now, Sherrill is doing the closing. The O's are loving what they are getting from Sherrill. He has recorded 21 saves and a 1-1 record. Those 21 saves rank second in the MLB behind Angels' closer Francisco Rodriguez.
- Chris Tillman—Tillman was the former Mariners' top pitching-prospect before the deal. Now with Baltimore's AA affiliate, the Bowie Baysox, Tillman is showing why. He is currently 6-1, with a 2.76 ERA and has only given up two homers. Tillman is not expected to be called up this season; however, we may see a call-up sometime next season in September (maybe even earlier than that).
- Kam Mickolio and Tony Butler—Let's start with Butler, who is now with Baltimore's A affiliate the Delmarva Shorebirds. Currently, he is 2-3, with a 4.21 ERA in nine games started. Butler is still very young and he has a lot of time to work on his pitches and produce. Mickolio is currently with the Bowie Baysox and has a 1-1 record, with a 3.64 ERA and a save as a reliever. Mickolio is a little older than Butler; however, he still has a shot at the Major League roster sometime late next year.
- Baltimore Orioles—Unlike the Mariners, the Orioles were supposed to lose 100+ games and be sitting in last place at the end of this year. They are sitting in last place, but only by a half-game as they hold a 31-31 record. The O's have the fourth best bullpen ERA in the American League (one part thanks to Sherrill), and they have been sitting around the .500 mark for sometime now. They weren't even supposed to think of competing this year; however, like Kevin Millar once said, "We start 0-0 like everyone else". Don't count the Baby Birds out just yet.
All Stats as of June 9, 2008