For Mariners fans, the big news of the day was the end of the 17-game losing streak. The schneid that had taken a life of its own—one more loss and it could have been convicted for causing emotional suffering.
However, amid the celebration, what was lost was the fact that the team had lost out on the St. Louis Cardinals' outfielder Colby Rasmus.
It was no surprise that Rasmus would be traded, what with being leapfrogged by Jon Jay in center field and his personal issues with the coaching staff. It was a foregone conclusion that Rasmus would be shipped out of town, in return for a much-needed reliever and starter.
What should surprise baseball fans of any team was the robbery the Blue Jays committed Wednesday, giving up chump change in return for an extremely talented outfielder in need of a change of scenery.
The Blue Jays gave up Edwin Jackson, Octavio Dotel and Marc Rzepczynski for Colby Rasmus, P.J Walters, Brian Tallet and Trever Miller.
Okay, let's break this down:
- Edwin Jackson has a 3.92 ERA and is heading to his fifth team in three years.
- Marc Rzepczynski is 26, but was mediocre as a starter in 2010 before converting to a reliever.
- Corey Patterson and a few "players to be named later" does not make a difference.
- Octavio Dotel is 38 years old.
And on top of Rasmus, the Jays received two relievers that will immediately join their bullpen.
I nearly choked on the cranberry juice I was drinking when I first saw the deal this morning. It's hard not to think Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos cast a spell on the Cardinals front office with this deal he pulled off.
The Jays convinced the Cardinals to take Jackson and his $8.35 million contract and Dotel, both of whom are free agents after this season, with little salary relief. So why does this matter for the Mariners?
I've been pleased with what Jack Zduriencik has been able to do with his time in Seattle. The fact that he didn't go after Rasmus leaves me very puzzled. The fact that he contacted the Cardinals about Rasmus makes no difference because nearly every other team did.
Given the meager package the Blue Jays gave up, I was shocked Jack Z didn't top the offer. Surely the M's could have been the more attractive suitor with a package of Doug Fister and Brandon League?
Fister would have been much easier to re-sign, is the clearly superior pitcher to Jackson and didn't look bad at the plate either. Being under team control through 2012, League would've been a much more logical answer to their bullpen issues.
Colby Rasmus would've been a great addition to the team, being suited for Safeco Field, an immediate starter in the outfield and eventual replacement for Ichiro.
Playing armchair GM is definitely not an occupation devoid of emotion.
I was dismayed by the fact that the Blue Jays were able to offer scraps for Rasmus, knowing that the M's could have offered more. It sort of ruined today's victory over the Yankees for me.
Instead, the M's are left in the dust, having squandered an opportunity to acquire a supremely talented outfielder.