According to Ken Rosenthal, the Mariners and Rockies have agreed to a deal that will bring pitcher Aaron Harang to Seattle. Harang, 34, was designated for assignment by Colorado over last weekend.
Harang is a shadow of the pitcher he was from 2005-2007, when he was among the best right-handers in baseball. Last season, in 31 starts for the Dodgers, Harang posted a 3.61/4.14/4.91 pitcher slash -- ERA, FIP, and xFIP -- over 180 innings. While impressive, last year's ERA and FIP ratios probably overstate his talent at this point: his 6.54 strikes out per nine innings ratio was nearly a career low, and Dodger Stadium undoubtedly helped the fly ball pitcher suppress his home run rate: Harang's 6.3% HR/FB ratio last season was significantly lower than his 10.6% career figure in the category. Some regression in this area would likely make him more of a No.4 or No.5 starter than a mid-rotation piece.
Nonetheless, Harang will likely slide into Seattle's shambolic rotation immediately. The organization's rotation depth is perilously thin, and if nothing else, Harang gives the team another competent starter.
I would expect that the M's will send the Rockies a C list prospect or so to complete the deal. Colorado has no leverage with Harang and won't be able to extract any sort of impact talent in the exchange.
More pressingly, I'm curious who will be sent down and how the rotation will be shuffled. Personally, I'd DFA Kameron Loe, shift Blake Beavan to relief, and stick Harang in the rotation. Doing so would give the M's a swing man and would allow Brandon Maurer a chance to work through his early season struggles. The other option would be to keep Loe, send Maurer back to the minors, and insert Harang into the rookie's rotation slot.
We'll keep you updated.
Fortunately, the M's appear to have taken option 1 and DFA'd Loe. I would assume this means Beavan will head to the bullpen, but we've all been surprised before.
Seattle will send Steven Hensely to Colorado in exchange for Harang. He's a 26-year-old reliever with a SO/BB ratio of exactly 1 thus far in his Triple-A career, and he's more of an org guy than anything else.
To complete the deal, the Mariners will reportedly pay $1.5 million of Harang's salary.