Yesterday, Mariners’ GM Jack Z did what he always does, trade for a hitter that is all power but can’t get on base and can’t play defense at all. Z traded for him at a time when the team is sinking fast (I suppose in the hopes it would give the team a spark or something?)
The trade I’m talking about, of course, is the acquisition of Mark Trumbo and pitcher Vidal Nuno for a package of four players in newly acquired backup catcher Wellington Castillo, minor league players Jack Reinheimer and Gabby Guerrero, and reliever Dominic Leone.
At first glance this might look like a pretty good deal for the M’s.
Not a lot was really given up and LF was clearly a black hole posting a -0.3 WAR so far on the season. Vidal Nuno also adds a bit more badly needed starting pitching depth to a pretty beat up rotation at the moment.
I would argue, though, that Trumbo with his track record is just another guy who strikes out to much and can’t play defense. His career OBP is .298; not exactly a guy who walks a lot. At best he improves this team by one win over the rest of the year, and at worst he means they strike out even more than they are now.
It also creates a log-jam in the outfield, so more roster moves are likely before the end of the week.
This trade also potentially creates a problem at catcher.
We all know Zunino has not been hitting well at all so far this year. The acquisition of Castillo provided a steadying presence behind him. This is now gone and we are back to likely Jesus Sucre on day games.
Sucre was replaced precisely because he is not a good option back there. Yet another issue is the loss of Leone. He has had some command issues recently but is a pretty solid bullpen arm on a team badly in need of solid bullpen arms.
All in all, I do not like this trade. It has marginal upside and saddles us with another guy that will hit some (likely solo) home runs for us. It’s a classic Jack Z move and one that did not need to be made at this time.