After the stressful trades last night between the Angels, Mariners, and Twins, it’s probable that many people were refreshing Twitter throughout most of this sleepy Thursday, looking for the first hint of Ohtani news.
Uh, doesn’t he play second base?
Source: Dee Gordon has been traded to the Seattle Mariners, who plan on using him as a center fielder. Considering just how much emphasis the Mariners placed on outfield defense last year, an interesting move.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 7, 2017
Oh. At first, it wasn’t clear what the cost would be to acquire Gordon from the Marlins, who under Derek Jeter have undergone a fire sale reminiscent of their early days.
Marlins get Dugger Torres and neidert for Dee— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) December 7, 2017
That isn’t a player named Dugger Torres, unfortunately. That’s Robert Dugger and Chris Torres, along with Nick Neidert. Neidert was pretty much the best SP prospect in the system, and Chris Torres was a top international prospect who had high potential as a shortstop. Dugger had a decent 2017 with Modesto to boost his stock, but is otherwise considered a middling prospect.
So the M’s are giving up their best SP prospect, their best SS prospect, and just gave up their best catching prospect yesterday. Surely there must be something else.
Source: as part of the Gordon deal, the Marlins also send $1M in international pool money to the Mariners.— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) December 7, 2017
If accurate the Mariners now have $3.557 million in pool money, the Rangers $3.535 million. https://t.co/2CtHufKiqS— Shannon Drayer (@shannondrayer) December 7, 2017
That puts the Mariners at the very top when it comes to who can offer Shohei Ohtani the most bonus money. Here’s the official press release.
#Mariners acquire two-time All-Star Dee Gordon and international slot money from Miami in exchange for minor leaguers Robert Dugger, Nick Neidert and Christopher Torres.— MarinersPR (@MarinersPR) December 7, 2017
Read: https://t.co/NaAJkGlJRP pic.twitter.com/sfht5DxjpP
Gordon, who turns 30 in April, was the NL batting champion in 2015. He had a very good 2017 as well, posting 3.3 WAR, though much of his value was derived from his defense and baserunning. It will be interesting to see if he can transition that defensive value to center field, which he’s never played at the Major League level. He’s signed for three more years at about $12 million per year, with a vesting option for a fourth year.
Basically, the last couple days have seen the M’s doubling down on Ohtani. If they get him, the trades today and yesterday look fantastic. If they don’t get him, they could look pretty bad.
Hold your breath.