Let's face it, Seattle fans: The Mariners are done this year. Accept it and move on.
With the trade deadline imminent, the Mariners need to take a seriously long look at the makeup of their team and decide whether or not they can reload and make a run at the Angels and A's next year. If not, they should blow up the squad for the second time in five years and try again.
My humble opinion: Blow the whole thing up.
This tactic is in line with the moves they've made over the last few weeks. They've jettisoned the hitting coach, manager, and general manager, and just today they released struggling slugger Richie Sexson outright. Word in the wings is that Jose Vidro will be the next one to go.
So, if the team is committed to losing the deadweight, even with nothing in return, I see no reason to attempt to hold onto the few older players that are performing. Some of these guys have value to contending teams.
1. Raul Ibanez
There has been no batter more consistent and well liked than the hard-working, defensively-underestimated outfielder. He always hovers above .270 in BA, hits between 15 and 30 homers, and doesn't strand people on base too often.
Let's not forget: He's a lefty. He'd be a valuable asset to a contending team looking to add a consistent batter in their No. 5 or 6 spot in the order, protecting a free-swinging cleanup man.
2. Erik Bedard
OK, he's been disappointing, but I think his struggles are more due to injury and disinterest as the team has spiraled consistently downward. You put him on the Yankees, and he's probably a great pitcher again. Once again, he's a lefty, so that counts for something.
3. Jarrod Washburn
A victim of little-to-no run support for the last two years, he is still a consistent lefthanded innings-eater with some gas in the tank. Put him in the National League, and he's back to third or fourth-starter status. And notice the pattern: He's a lefty.
Those are the most valuable assets that seem tradable at this point, and each will get one or two prospects in return. I 've heard people asking for Kenji Johjima and Ichiro Suzuki to be traded, but both are long shots: Ichiro because of his contract and hero status in Seattle, and Johjima just for his contract.
I doubt the Mariners are going to eat the rest of either's contracts, and I think it's more likely they will keep Johjima as the good defensive catcher that he is and move hot prospect Jeff Clement to first base or the designated hitter slot.