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With no ace of any kind available, so much parity in the MLB right now, and a high premium placed on late-inning relief of late, the Mariners are holding two very valuable potential pieces in Bedard and Brandon League. For each type of player, we’ve seen significant compensation in the past couple of years.
In the case of League, there may be no better example than Matt Capps. Capps was coming off an offseason that saw him get non-tendered by the Pirates, and posted good numbers in a brief stint with the Nationals before they traded Capps for Wilson Ramos, a guy once reportedly offered to the Mariners for Cliff Lee (along with Aaron Hicks). The Nationals added a very good catching prospect to an organization already fairly deep at the position, but Ramos was rated as the 58th best prospect in baseball according to Baseball America prior to the 2010 season.
Bedard’s case is a little murkier. He’s definitely no Cliff Lee, who had a couple of really solid, consistent years that included a Cy Young Award under his belt when the Mariners traded him. One potential parallel is Ted Lilly, who was traded for a package whose best prospect was Blake Dewitt. Dewitt has turned out pretty bad so far in Chicago, but he was considered a viable prospect at the time.
The Mariners will not get Jesus Montero, but a B-prospect and a couple of interesting throw-ins is better for the future than another half-season on a non-contendor.
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