The Seattle Mariners need to make some off season changes. That is no question, but people are wondering how, when and who?
The Seattle Mariners have recently signed 1B, 3B, and OF Russell Branyan. A move that shows that Mariners general manager Jack Zduirencik still loves and misses his players from Millwaukee.
The Mariners might now put some focus on their outfield and DH spots. Some candidates are Pat Burrel, Ken Griffey Jr, Adam Dunn, or re-sign Raul Ibanez. I would love to see Griffey back in Seattle, especially at a primary but not exclusivly DH spot.
If the Mariners don't re-sign Willie Bloomquist, Miguel Cairo or Raul Ibanez they will have a little extra to spend and after the brilliant signing of Russel Branyan, The Mariners might pursue guys like Jerry Hairston Jr.
Jerry Hairston Jr is a free agent and has a lot of value and potential in him. Guys like him are what the Mariners need to look for, guys who just get through the cracks.
It is widely rumored that the Mariners will be shopping JJ Putz, Adrian Beltre, Jarrod Washburn and possibly Ichiro Suzuki.
JJ Putz is a keeper in my book. After a magnificent 2007 season he can regain that form in 2009. Teams that show interest in him are the Mets, Tigers, Cardinals and many other teams that show less interest. The Mets and Tigers seem to be the front runners here but both may go for guys like Fransisco Rodriguez, Kerry Wood, Trevor Hoffman and Brian Fuentes.
Adrian Beltre has been a good acquisition, but at the 2009 deadline he seems like the perfect gut to trade. Teams like the Twins were pursuing him but the Mariners price was too high. Since he becomes a free agent after the 2009 season, if the M's are doing good at the deadline they should not trade him and wait to not re-sign him. If they have another horrific season I say trade him for AAA guys.
Jarrod Washburn could be dealt this off-season. With the Yankees going after Sabathia, Peavy and Burnett they may look at Washburn after the big names sign or at the deadline when the Al west tightens. The Twins show a lot of interest in Washburn seeing as they had him "under waivers" during the season.
Ichiro Suzuki should be dealt as soon as business's open in the morning. He is on a down slope and many have said that his .310 batting average isn't the worst he has ever had which is true but when it was lower before he was hitting 15 home runs, this season he hit 6. If he is dealt to the Yankees or Cubs I wish the best for him. But for the good of the team I want him out of here.
The Seattle Mariners are in my opinion not going to be in the Al West cellar again this season, they might find them selves in the attic or on the roof. Lets just see if the Mariners will become the dominant team I believe they will be.