Rebuild mode has been stepped up a notch, following the trade of catcher Mike Zunino, battery-mate, and Seattle Mariner’s Ace, James Paxton was traded to the New York Yankees. The Mariner’s best pitcher returned 3 players including Justus Sheffield, the Yankees #1 pitching prospect. Also coming over is outfielder Dom Thompson-Williams and pitcher Erik Swanson.
— Cut4 (@Cut4) May 9, 2018
Pax had been coming on as of late with his inning count rising every year—as did his strikeouts. Given good run support, the 30 year old should be elevated to superstar status in the Big Apple. The Yankees needed pitching help all of last year as neither CC Sabathia or Masahiro Tanaka are true #2 pitchers.
In return, the Mariners got a 22 year old starter in Justus Sheffield. The Yankees project that he is still a year or two away and just couldn’t risk pushing him into the limelight as he is not ready. Sheffield has a slider and mid 90s fastball, but had less than a year of Triple A. He could be ready for an MLB call up but strictly as a reliever. Expect the Mariners to give him some time in Tacoma to see if he can work out as a starter.
After being acquired from the #Yankees in exchange for James Paxton, here's where Justus Sheffield, Erik Swanson and Dom Thompson-Williams enter the #Mariners Top 30 Prospects list: https://t.co/eocityUEuR pic.twitter.com/UNs4JIF1Ss
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) November 20, 2018
Dom Thompson-Williams is a 23 year old out of the University of South Carolina. A Former 5th round pick, Dom had a decent year in single A Tampa, where he had 17 homers and 65 RBI in 100 games. Dom is listed as fast and capable of making highlight plays, but can sometimes misread fly balls. His defense will need work, most likely in class AA Arkansas.
Erik Swanson is a right-handed pitcher who could give the Mariners some help in depth. Drafted by the Texas Rangers in 2016, Swanson has worked his way up from Iowa Western Junior College, up to Triple A Scranton. Look for Swanson to appear in Tacoma and build his arm strength. Last year, Swanson pitched 72 innings and put up a 3.86 ERA.