seattlepi.com Mariners blog
Mariners showing an interest in Cubs' Hill
Conventional baseball wisdom says you can never have too many pitchers.
Apparently that's a belief that Seattle general manager Jack Zduriencik carries with him.
The Mariners, who just completed a trade with the Cubs that landed them infielder Ronny Cedeno and lefty Garrett Olson, appear to be exploring ways to get their hands on another Chicago lefty, Rich Hill.
At the same time the club is looking for a way to land free agent outfielder Bobby Abreu, but the Mariners need to clear out payroll in order to land him.
Sources suggest the Baltimore Orioles may have the inside track on Hill, who was a top prospect before battling control issues. He won 11 games and had a 3.92 ERA in 2007 in making 32 starts, but he walked 18 batters in his first 19.2 innings and was sent to the minors.
He tried to pick things up in winter ball while pitching in Venezuela, but he walked 23 batters in 21 innings.
If Seattle could tempt the Cubs with one of their best-paid pitchers – Miguel Batista ($9 million in 2009), Jarrod Washburn ($10.3 million) or Carlos Silva ($11) – in exchange for Hill, that would probably clear the way toward the club making Abreu, who made $16 million last year, a legitimate offer.
But Batista, Washburn and Silva have been shopped for the last couple of months, and so far no team has bitten on any of them. Small wonder, since they are expensive and they combined to go 13-43 last season in Seattle.
Given everything, it seems a long shot, but the Mariners are in a position where they have to explore all options to get the sour taste of 101 losses in 2008 out of their mouths.
Posted by John Hickey at January 31, 2009 1:40 a.m.