The Mariners Traded Flexen & Gott

In Cynical Mariners News: the Mariners DFA’d Chris Flexen last week. Which, for some reason, means the Mariners had time to work out a trade with the New York Mets, in hopes to get literally anything back. What ended up happening is we packaged Flexen with Trevor Gott, getting back lefty reliever Zach Muckenhirn, who the Mets had also recently DFA’d.

The cynical part comes with the fact that the Mets ate Flexen’s entire remaining contract – which was noted to be around $4 million for the rest of this season – and we know this was a blatant salary dumping move because the Mets immediately DFA’d Flexen upon completion of the deal. The Mariners traded Trevor Gott so the Mariners could save $4 million, end of discussion. On top of that, we saved the remainder of Gott’s salary (around half a mil), and the Mets still get to control him for one more arbitration year.

Now, if you wanted to look on the bright side, maybe the Mariners are able to unlock something within Muckenhirn. He wouldn’t be the first ex-Met we’ve turned into solid gold. But, he’s 28 years old, his strikeout rate took a HUGE dive this year, and his strikeout-to-walk rate is also trending in the wrong direction. I guess he has options, so that’s something. But, I’m absolutely baffled by this drop in K-rate. Did he lose MPH on his fastball? Did he lose command? Is he hurt?

I dunno. I got nothing. I’ll wait for the scounting reports to be released on the local blogs.

I want to be mad at this trade. I want to yell and scream at the Mariners for being so God damn cheap. Just eat the fucking $4 million, for Christ’s sake!

But, what, I’m going to be up in arms over Trevor Gott? There’s a reason why he was an available free agent this offseason. There’s a reason why he signed for slightly over a million dollars. He’s Just A Guy. Sure, he’s got decent stuff, but so do dozens of other guys all through our organization and off the scrap heap! His K-rate isn’t anything special. He has an ERA over 4. Maybe he’s a little unlucky based on a solid FIP. But, this isn’t some devastating loss to our team. We can back-fill Gott no problem.

Yes, it’s annoying that the Mariners felt they needed to save $4 million. In the grand scheme of baseball things, $4 million is nothing. They’re quibbling over a Subway sandwich when there’s nothing stopping them from popping for Ruth’s Chris. The thought behind the move is that the Mariners are going to put this money towards mid-season improvement in other area(s) of the team. And, since they’re apparently married to this concept of a budget – in a game with no real salary cap – I guess it’s a good thing that they’re setting themselves up to make a move.

There’s a nonzero chance that Trevor Gott is lights out the rest of this season. If that’s the case, and the Mariners bring in some dud of a hitter with that $4 million who drags the offense down even further, then by all means, let’s all meet back here at my blog in a couple months and rant and rave about how fucking cheap and miserable this ownership group is. But, my hunch is that this trade won’t even be remembered, except as a minor bullet point on this season, if it’s even remembered at all. I think Gott will be okay and that’s it. I think the Mariners’ bullpen won’t really miss him. And I also think the odds of the Mariners finding an impact bat mid-season are slim to none. Mike Ford is probably the best we can hope for, and he’s already on the team.

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