Seattle Mariners trade rumors have surfaced with the return of Hisashi Iwakuma. The Mariners might trade Iwakuma if some reports are to be believed, as his return gives the team one too many starting pitchers. That depth, coupled with the recent struggles the Mariners have had to win games, could lead to several deals happening before the MLB trade deadline on July 31.
A report from Lookout Landing on July 1 examined some of the internal options that the Mariners have. With the success that Mike Montgomery has had, the fact that J.A. Happ would have to be designated for assignment, and that Taijuan Walker is turning into an ace, it doesn’t leave many choices for the front office.
When Hisashi Iwakuma gets activated from the disabled list, the team has the option of going to a six-man rotation or demoting Roenis Elias back to Triple-A Tacoma. In his second season with the Mariners, Elias has started 12 games as an injury replacement. He is 4-5 with a 4.25 ERA and 1.292 WHIP through 72 innings. Those aren’t bad numbers at all, even though he has lacked consistency at times. He has also been good enough to remain in the starting rotation. This is why some baseball analysts have suggested an Iwakuma trade is coming.
The main reason Iwakuma comes up in Seattle Mariners trade rumors is that he is in the final MLB season of his contract. He is making $7 million in 2015 and will become a free agent in the offseason. That’s an easy contract for any contending team to absorb, and it all comes down to whether a team is going to offer the Mariners something to make a deal worth negotiating.
This is the fourth season that Iwakuma has pitched for the Mariners, and in that time he has a 38-21 record, a 3.18 ERA, and a WHIP of 1.096. Those numbers are the reason he was in contention for the 2013 American League Cy Young Award. If he can prove that he is healthy and ready to go, Iwakuma could command a nice return package before the trade deadline.
Coming into the 2015 MLB season, it seemed like the Mariners had a roster capable of competing for an AL West title. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, the Mariners were also just two wins from making the 2014 MLB Playoffs. At 36-43 this season, the team is now six games behind the second wild card slot. If they can make up some ground during July, the team might not become a seller before the deadline. If they drop further back, though, there are going to be quite a few rumors surfacing.
There are a lot of teams that could use additional starting pitching, so there might be a list of buyers at the end of July. What Seattle might look for in return includes young outfielders with a high ceiling or prospects. Fans certainly weren’t expecting to hear Seattle Mariners trade rumors that have the team as a “seller” this year, but failing to live up to expectations has consequences.
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