Mariners looking at Hamilton, Upton and anyone else who can hit
Seattle has a stash of pitching prospects to aid in any trade talks but the Mariners are also investigating several free-agent hitters.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Mariners are looking all over for offense.
"They're in on everybody,'' a rival GM said.
Their desires should come as no surprise, as the Mariners have finished at the bottom of the league statistically in recent years. They do have some financial flexibility, so that's a plus.
One issue, though, for hitters could be Safeco Field, which has been about the worst hitters park in the American League. The Mariners are planning to move the fences in, so that may help.
Mariners CEO Chuck Armstring three weeks ago told CBSSports.com that they are considering Hamilton, and that is the indeed case. GM Jack Zduriencik has suggested that the likelihood isn't that great, and that's probably true, too, but that's because there will be other teams involved (though his market remains something of a mystery so far).
Zduriencik is believed to have been in touch with the Diamondbacks and his old friend Kevin Towers, their GM, regarding Upton. One potential issue there is that Seattle is one of four teams on Upton's no-trade list, according to sources, though of course players can be traded anyway so long as they approve.
The Mariners could have the pieces to form a decent package for Upton since Arizona is looking for a young shortstop and pitching. The Mariners have a shortstop prospect, Nick Franklin, plus several top pitching prospects -- including Danny Hultzen, Taijuan Walker, James Paxton, Brandon Maurer and Carter Capps.
If Seattle can't land the corner players they seek, folks wonder whether they could become a player for free-agent center fielder Michael Bourn. They can't rule out anyone who can hit is the way they figure it.