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Which New Team? The one with Ackley and Smoak

He continues to count off the odds-enhancing factors, on the fingers of both hands...


8.  You would take infielders over outfielders.  Ackley plays a premium position.  As a quality 1B, you'd rather have Smoak than a corner OF or DH or lumbering Montero type (though of course you'd rather have a CF than a good 1B).

Franklin is probably going to provide the Mariners with a league-average, low-salary SS real quick here.  Figgins will play 3B.  That positions your Yahtzee card to just cram bats into your OF and DH slots.


We're not saying the job is done.  We're reminding, just how thunderously perfect the M's scenario is with these two.  They've got their Braun and Weeks.


Q.  Are Ackley and Smoak the best ML-ready prospects in the game?

A.  Jason Heyward is a little better than they are, and Buster Posey is as good.  Jesus Montero isn't quite ML-ready; he's as good overall as Smoak, a better hitter but worse at anything that doesn't require a bat in your hands. 

There are other glam guys, of course.  But the fact is, you could reasonably argue Ackley and Smoak as the #1 and #2 franchise hopefuls in baseball.  Except for Heyward.

Mariners fans need to drop the "No Cheering In The Press Box" shackles and wake up.  The Mariners right now have a Rays-type storm brewing in the minor leagues.


Q.  Two players.  One LH and one switch-hit.  One a #3 hitter and one a #4 hitter.  One a doubles guy who can run and draw walks.  The other a 35-homer, 120-RBI guy.  Is that enough to carry an offense?

A.  Show me a team with two ideal 3-4 hitters, say Minnesota, and I'll show you a team that figured out how to score runs somehow.

But the M's also have:

  • Nick Franklin, whom if Ackley and Smoak weren't here would be a legit glam spect
  • A 8-to-make-2 situation in OF with Halman, Wilson, Saunders, Raben, Morban, etc
  • Triunfel and Liddi and Moore etc

  • The farm system rated #1 (one) in baseball for hitting by Baseball Prospectus before Smoak got here
  • The #2 or #3 overall in the next draft

It is simply amazing that the 2010 Mariners, at this time of day, was able to put up an offense worse than the ones I watched in the 70's and 80's.  But that's not going to be the lineup for long.


Part 4