From Baker's blog and a bevy of Twitters, the M's have kicked off September by adding Mike Carp, Jason Vargas, and Adrian Beltre back on to the big league roster. Those aren't the only players you're going to see added this month, but Tacoma's still gunning for the playoffs, so in the interest of maintaining a pleasant relationship with their highest affiliate, the have for the time being elected to only take its best pitcher and one of its best hitters. Rooting for a minor league team seems fulfilling.
Carp's here to both get some playing time and fill in for Russell Branyan, who may be done for the year with a funny back. On the plus side, Branyan's back issue helps explain his second half and lower his price in the offseason, but then it also serves as a chilling reminder that he's a 33 year old slugging first baseman who's had old player skills his entire life. Going forward he is by no means a sure thing, which is why it'd be nice if we could depend on Carp to provide a little productivity as a fallback. He's no star in the making, as Dave talked about earlier today, but guys have done more with less, so there's some reason for optimism.
Vargas...well I don't know why so many people seem to have written him off already. Granted, little can be expected of him over the course of this final month, since the team is in theory still trying to limit his innings, but considering he didn't throw a single meaningful pitch all of 2008 due to injury, I'm more than happy with his strong changeup and ability to induce swings at balls out of the zone. Vargas has been good in AAA and okay in the Majors, and though he's not RRS, he's not Garrett Olson, either, and it's nice to have him back. Despite the crowded picture, he may very well be a part of our future rotation.
Beltre's back for what will likely be his final five weeks in a Mariner uniform. His time in Seattle has been marked by several long fly balls at home dying on the track, relentless fan criticism, and a contused right testicle. I wonder what's the opposite of a home town discount.