In a bizarre turn of events, the Mariners successfully traded away Carlos Santana’s contract. You may think “Wait, that’s not that bizarre. They’re rebuilding.” And you would be right. Where things get weird is that they traded him for Edwin Encarnacion.
In a wild three–team trade, which was reported incorrectly multiple times, the Rays, Indians, and Mariners will be swapping 5 players and $11 million in total. Let’s break it down.
The Mariners will be receiving Encarnacion, 35 years old, from the Indians, as well as $5 million from the Rays. The Indians will be reunited with Santana, and are getting $6 million courtesy of the Mariners, and obtained 1B/OF Jake Bauers from the Rays. The Rays are acquiring 1B/3B Yandy Diaz and RHP Cole Sulser from the the Indians.
Boy, that was a mouthful.
I understand most of this, but like I said before, aren’t the Mariners rebuilding??
It should be noted, and can’t be understated, that Mariners GM was reportedly hospitalized while the deal was being constructed. This dude was in a fever dream and just said, “Take Santana, I don’t care what we get back,” before vomiting up a lung.
Seattle #Mariners GM Jerry DiPoto rreturns to the winter meetings hotel after being hospitalized with blood clot in his lung. He actually made the 3-way trade in the hospital giving fist pumps to nurses.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) December 13, 2018
Now, Encarnacion, despite being older than Santana, has considerably more value. He is fresh off his 7th straight 30+ home run season and his 4th straight season of 100+ RBIs. But, the numbers are trending down for Encarnacion. His batting average, OBP, slugging percentage, OPS, and OPS+ were his lowest since 2011. But, right–handed powers always seem to have a market, and Encarnacion will likely be no different. Like I said when the Mariners acquired Santana, Encarnacion isn’t going to be sticking around in Seattle for very long. The Rays reportedly still want the DH, and another trade is apparently looming.
The Mariners are absolutely bonkers. This is fun to watch but puzzling all the same.
Also, don’t look now, but the Rays continue to obtain underappreciated players for their 2019 team, and we all know that Kevin Cash will somehow make them stars.
Photo: Tony Dejak- AP Photos