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Mariners Moose Tracks, 12/20/16: Mets Outfield Problem, Steroid HOFers, and Bucket Lists

To get over those Tuesday morning blues.

MLB: Colorado Rockies at New York Mets Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning folks. Yesterday’s news included Ken Rosenthal reporting that the Mets were searching for a new center fielder, likely because Yoenis Cespedes is not defensively sound for the position. He indicates that the Mets are even looking at Andrew McCutchen.

Should the Mets pull off a move for a full-time center fielder, it would give them four full-time outfielders with Cespedes, Jay Bruce, and Curtis Granderson. That would surely free up guys like Michael Conforto and Juan Lagares for trades.

Lagares is a guy I’ve long been enamored with, as you will see in my oh-so-horrible fanpost that I wrote in high school. Despite the fact that Lagares has put up just 1.8 fWAR in the last two seasons combined (and his sprained shoulder that will sideline him until Spring Training), he’d be a terrific bench asset as a solid defender and would likely cost very little.

Conforto is the sexier option, as a 23-year-old from Redmond High School who evaluators drooled over when he was in the minors. He’d be more costly, and I’d wager the Mets would do their darndest to find him a spot in the lineup no matter how many outfielders they carried on their roster.

The M’s have a large conglomerate of outfielders as it is. I’d be surprised to see them aggressively pursue any outfielders unless they were to part with Seth Smith, which they’ll probably do. I think they’d be prudent to keep their eyes on this situation with the Mets.

Now, onto the rest of the news.

In Mariners news...

  • It looks like my praise for the Mariners minor league development yesterday was timed well, because the M’s announced their minor league coaching staffs later in the morning.
  • If you’re feeling reminiscent, take a look at this compilation of Ichiro’s infield hits from his rookie year.

Around the league...

  • Nick Stellini makes the case for starter Jason Hammel, saying that he’s “a logical next step for the Mariners.” We’ve hashed and re-hashed this argument to death, but it makes sense that the M’s would spend their remaining free agent money on a starting pitcher rather than using trade chips to acquire one.
  • Kenta Maeda participated in some weird form of Japanese “Punk’d” involving baseball players. It feels like baseball players are much bigger celebrities in Japan and Korea than they are in America.
  • The Giants have signed infielder Jimmy Rollins to a minor league deal. I honestly thought that the dude had already retired.
  • Craig Calcaterra wonders why Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds have seen such a surge in support among those that have publicly released their Hall of Fame ballots. I’ve always been a proponent of letting in the steroid users, but it’s interesting to me that everyone has suddenly decided to accept it at once.
  • The Pirates inked reliever Daniel Hudson to a two-year, $11MM deal. That’s the same exact price the M’s got Marc Rzepczynski for, but Hudon is coming off a year in which he had a 5.22 ERA in 60.1 innings. Does that make you guys feel better about the deal for Scrabble?
  • Let’s Go Tribe tabs Adam Lind as a potential free agent signing.
  • #Cut4 created a “bucket list” for baseball fans in 2017.