David Aardsma And The Reliever Run

This is happening just like it does in fantasy drafts. Earlier in the offseason, we saw Jose Contreras and Joaquin Benoit get things started. More recently, J.J. Putz and Scott Downs found homes. But then, just in the last few days, Koji Uehara, J.P. Howell, Jesse Crain, Matt Guerrier, Kerry Wood, Randy Choate, Bobby Jenks, and Joel Peralta have all signed contracts as the reliever market has caught fire. Feeling like they don't want to get left out, everyone's trying to reach into the middle at once to grab what they can get.

What this means is that only now can you really expect to start hearing some whispers about David Aardsma. Everybody knows that Aardsma's available - presumably even Aardsma himself - and while the Winter Meetings passed by with nary a rumor, the reliever market wasn't yet what it is now. Now, teams are focused on relievers. Now, relievers are falling off the board. So now, Aardsma should start looking like more of an option.

It's not that there aren't still plenty of relievers left. Rafael Soriano's still out there. Brian Fuentes is still out there. Kevin Gregg, Grant Balfour, and Jon Rauch are still out there. But Aardsma's under team control for two years at a reasonable price, given his successful closing experience, so he's attractive. He and the Mariners should get some attention.

Whether they get enough attention has yet to be seen. If dealt, Aardsma isn't likely to bring back much more than a B-prospect and salary relief, and salary relief doesn't do the M's a whole lot of good in their current situation. It's possible that, if they don't get a worthwhile offer, the front office will opt to begin the season with Aardsma and look to move him in the middle, when they might have more leverage. But at least now they should be able to have some productive talks. That's something I doubt they could've done a few weeks ago.

We'll see how this develops, if this develops. It's unlikely that any Aardsma trade would be very exciting, but it would give the M's some flexibility, and this front office has been known to work wonders with a little flexibility. I know there's a rumor out there that the M's would just look to replace Aardsma with Gregg, but that doesn't make very much sense to me unless Gregg's willing to accept a one-year contract. Anyway! I'm losing my train of thought. David Aardsma. He could be traded. I imagine we'll find out soon.

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