By Shannon Drayer
The winter meetings have come to a close and the Mariners still look pretty much the same with the exception of the addition of Jason Bay, which should be announced officially Friday. Work to change this team will continue, just not in such a public place as the Gaylord Opryland Resort. Big names are still on the board and the Mariners will keep an eye on these players as they continue to pursue trades. The meetings are over; the offseason moves are not.
The Mariners still need bats, preferably in the outfield. They would like to add a starting pitcher. They may need a backup catcher. Is there help via trade? Will we see Jack Zduriencik make a multi-player deal like the Franklin Gutierrez deal? Is there another Cliff Lee deal out there with an impact player in the final year of his contract? Would Zduriencik make another prospect-for-prospect trade like he did last year with Michael Pineda and Jesus Montero? We didn't see any of these trades coming. Will we be surprised again?
While quite a bit got done early this year things have slowed down a bit as teams wait to see where Zack Greinke goes. If you believe that the Mariners are all in on Hamilton then this may or may not be important. Some believe that Texas cannot afford to bring back Hamilton if they sign Greinke. I'm not sure I buy that. Now if Texas is able to pull off a trade for Justin Upton, then they are looking at a very crowded outfield. At that point Hamilton would not be left with a lot of options. Or perhaps he would be. It is hard to believe that he would actually fall to the Mariners. Others would get involved in that case, wouldn't they? Lots of dominoes to fall. So much still up in the air.
Plenty to stoke the flames of the hot stove. On that note, our first "Hot Stove League Show" will be next Tuesday, Dec. 11 live from the Alderwood Mall Mariners Team Store. Zduriencik and Eric Wedge are scheduled to appear.