The Seattle Mariners are way ahead of schedule with their rebuild.
The team entered the 2021 season with hopes of having a winning season, but very few people expected the club to actually compete for a playoff bid.
At 51-46, Seattle is firmly in the mix in the American League Wild Card race.
Just four games separate the Mariners and the Oakland Athletics in the battle for the final playoff spot.
With this in mind, should Seattle add at the upcoming trade deadline?
It looks that way.
3. It Would Send A Message To Fans That The Organization Is Back
Including the 2021 season, it has been 20 long years since the Mariners last made the postseason.
Not only is that the longest active playoff drought in baseball right now; it’s also the longest active playoff drought in any of the four major American sports.
Mariners fans are itching to see their team in the postseason again.
In fact, many young Mariners fans have never even experienced postseason baseball in Seattle.
Buying at the deadline wouldn’t necessarily ensure that the Mariners would make the playoffs this year, but it would let the fans know that the organization is serious about turning things around.
The future is very bright, and 2021 is the first season where that truth is finally starting to shine through.
2. With Justin Dunn Set To Return Soon, The Team Is Already Going To Get A Nice Jolt In The Rotation
Help is already on the way for the Mariners.
25-year-old starting pitcher Justin Dunn has been on the shelf for several weeks with a shoulder injury, but worry not—he is set to return within the next week or two.
More updates from Scott Servais:
• Casey Sadler could be back this weekend
• Justin Dunn will throw off a mound at some point on homestand
• Justus Sheffield is ahead of Dunn, will get on mound Sunday
• Jake Fraley is feeling better, in quarantine until at least Monday
— Daniel Kramer (@DKramer_) July 22, 2021
Before hitting the injured list, Dunn was in the midst of the best season of his young career.
He was working on a 3.75 ERA over 11 starts and had allowed three runs or fewer in 10 of those outings.
A rotation of that caliber could be enough to propel the club to a playoff push if they also add some talent at the deadline in other areas.
1. At The Deadline, The Team Could Add Players Who Are Under Contract For Several Seasons
Buying at the trade deadline doesn’t have to mean going all-in on the 2021 season.
Rather, the Mariners would be wise to add some key players who can contribute in 2021 and beyond.
Seattle’s rebuild is coming to fruition really quickly, and the team’s window to win is going to be open for a long time.
The Mariners should do their best to give themselves the best chance possible to win a title during that window, and adding players who are under contract for multiple seasons is certainly a step in that direction.
Seattle has a very lackluster offense, and the team could really use some reinforcements.
Both players are under contract through the 2022 season.
Frazier is batting .327 with an OPS of .843 this season.
He leads the league with 122 hits, and he’s also a plus-defender.
Yo this play by Adam Frazier is INSANE pic.twitter.com/go2fWyk0P5
— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) May 2, 2021
Mancini, who can play at first base or in the outfield, is batting .261 with 16 home runs and 19 doubles.
He is a career .273 hitter with an OPS of .815.
Both players could pump some life into Seattle’s lineup.