Let's cut through all the bullshit for a minute.
-Carlos Silva is an average pitcher, and nothing more
-Carlos Silva is an improvement
-Carlos Silva's contract isn't a good one
-Carlos Silva's contract isn't going to cripple the team on its own
There. This isn't a genius way of addressing a roster that we all want to see contend next year, but it's better than trading nigh everything we have in the upper levels for two years of Erik Bedard (which, granted, may still happen). So it could've been worse.
With that out of the way...
In 2008, the Mariners will be paying ~$51m to the likes of Richie Sexson, Carlos Silva, Jarrod Washburn, Miguel Batista, and Jose Vidro.
Identify any other non-Yankees teams who will be spending that much (gross or by proportion) on such a thoroughly mediocre group of players, and report back on how well they're doing.
Use this as your salary resource.