Our friends at SodoMojo.com (covering the Seattle Mariners) think that a Seattle trade that would send Edwin Encarnacion to the Colorado Rockies still might happen this winter.
In this article, our colleagues in the Pacific Northwest looked at some of the recent trade chips the Mariners have obtained and if they will still be with the team when Seattle joins the Colorado Rockies and other squads for spring training in Arizona this February. Their prediction is that Seattle will trade Edwin Encarnacion to the Rockies in exchange for a similar type of haul as the Mariners received when they sent Carlos Santana to the Cleveland Indians in exchange for Encarnacion.
What is that return? A top 80 pick in the upcoming draft and some salary relief from Santana’s contract. If the Mariners were to send Encarnacion to Colorado, don’t be surprised if a prospect such as Grant Lavigne or another young, highly-rated player would be included in addition to the draft pick and Colorado eating a good deal of the $20 million salary the 35-year-old is due for the 2019 season.
Why would Seattle do this? After an offseason that has seen the Mariners send James Paxton, Jean Segura, Robinson Cano, Edwin Diaz and others out of the Emerald City, does it make sense to hold on to Encarnacion and his salary for one season?
From the Colorado side, would it make sense for a player who played just 23 games at first base last season and would be needed to be in the field much more than that in 2019, thanks to the lack of a designated hitter in the National League? Encarnacion hasn’t been in the NL since 2009 while very much fitting into the DH role with Toronto and Cleveland.
That is the bad news when it comes to a potential fit for Encarnacion in Denver. The good news, of course, is his offensive prowess. His 70 home runs and 214 RBI, as well as .848 OPS and 122 OPS+, during his two years in Cleveland are salivating for Rockies fans hoping Colorado adds another offensive weapon into the lineup this offseason.
Don’t forget that Colorado general manager Jeff Bridich said after the Santana-Encarnacion trade that he was still planning to add a “big bat” to the lineup. Could that bat still come from Seattle? Knowing the propensity of Seattle general manager Jerry Dipoto to make trades, anything is possible.