Robinson Cano was the big prize acquisition of the Seattle Mariners this offseason, but the team has done little else up to this point and now appear to be shifting their focus to complimentary players to augment their roster. The Mariners were expected to get into the running for right-hander Masahiro Tanaka, but elected to instead hang back from the negotiations and now appear certain to limit their spending before Spring Training begins.
Seattle could still look to add another starting pitcher and potentially a bat, according to MLB.com’s Greg Johns, but don’t appear likely for any of the remaining high priced options such as Ervin Santana, Ubaldo Jimenez, or even Nelson Cruz. The team has had conversations with Cruz and his agent, but they still appear to be asking for too much (both in years and dollars) for Seattle to consider making an offer.
Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik confirmed as much with Johns following the team’s introduction of Kevin Mather as the new Team President:
He and I will sit down in the next couple of days and kind of hash out some things in terms of what his vision is and where we’re at and maybe where we need to go. But we’re not going to do anything foolish. If the right scenario is there and it makes economic sense and talent sense, then that’s something you engage in.
But there’s an awful lot more that goes into it than saying you maybe have more money to spend. That’s good if you spend it wisely, but just to spend it to spend it would be foolish, and I think all of us understand that.
Pitching appears to be Zduriencik’s priority for the moment, potentially looking at Scott Baker according to Johns. The team did also sign former Brewers prospect Mark Rogers to a minor league deal in the past week, which could give them some additional depth.