Off-season overview, Spring Training preview; The first look at the 2017 Seattle Mariners

By Mariners365
Feb. 11, 2017

THREE DAYS until Pitchers and Catchers report to Peoria, Arizona

BY: Tom Hayden

Mariners 365, Holden, MA -----

What an off-season it has been for these Seattle Mariners, as GM Jerry Dipoto and Manager Scott Servais have been hard at work in trying to improve this ball club day in and day out. Certainly since Dipoto was hired after the 2015 season, there has already been improvements from his hard work. Despite not making the playoffs again in 2016, the M's managed to improve with a 10-win record difference from 2015 (86-76). Out of all 30 Major League ball clubs, the Mariners have been the busiest, and have made the most roster moves, over the course of what has felt like a rather quick off-season. In this article, I'll break down all of the Mariners off-season additions and subtractions in detail, as well as put together a projected lineup, starting pitching rotation, and position layout as Spring Training commences in just three days! 

As the 2016 season came to an end, the Seattle Mariners were what I like to describe as a puzzle that consisted of pieces that weren't quite together. An already solid ball club, who came in second place among a tough AL Western Division, and stayed in playoff contention until the final weekend of the season, still had areas that needed to be completely removed and repaired come the off-season. This was evident right away, as Jerry Dipoto and Scott Servais got to work right away, Wednesday November 2nd, to be exact. 

NOVEMBER - The Mariners claimed RHP Ryan Weber from the Atlanta Braves off of waivers. Weber was later DFA'd, however. LHP Charlie Furbush, RHP Ryan Cook, and C Steve Clevenger all outrighted to AAA Tacoma. The Texas Rangers claimed RHP Adrian Sampson off of waivers from the M's. RHP Drew Storen, 1B Adam Lind, 1B Dae-Ho Lee, RF Franklin Gutierrez, C Chris Iannetta all elect free agency. Houston Astros claim OF Norichika Aoki off of waivers from the M's. Mariners claim LHP Dean Kiekhefer off waivers from the St. Louis Cardinals. The Mariners make a trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers sending LHP Vidal Nuño to LAD in exchange for C Carlos Ruiz. C Steve Baron was released. The Mariners make a trade with the Oakland Athletics sending RHP Paul Blackburn to OAK in exchange for 3B Danny Valencia. Free agent RHP Ryan Cook signed. RHP Peter Tago signed off of free agency to a minor league deal and invited to Spring Training. RHP Blake Perry signed off of free agency to a minor league deal. Mariners sign free agent C Steve Baron to minor league deal, invite him to Spring Training. RHP Daury Perez signed off of free agency to a minor league contract. RHP Christopher Marte signed off of free agency to a minor league contract. RHP Elias Espino signed off of free agency to a minor league deal. RHP Tom Wilhelmsen designated for assignment. Mariners select the contract of 1B D.J. Peterson from AAA Tacoma. Mariners select the contract of LHP Paul Fry from AAA Tacoma. Mariners select the contract of RHP Thyago Vieira from AA Arkansas. The Mariners make a trade with the New York Yankees sending RHP Zack Littell to NYY in exchange for LHP James Pazos. The Mariners make a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays sending RHP Andrew Kittredge, 1B Dalton Kelly, and RHP Dylan Thompson to TB in exchange for 3B Richie Shaffer and SS Taylor Motter. OF Stefen Romero released. The Chicago Cubs claimed LHP David Rollins off waivers from the M's. SHP Pat Venditte designated for assignment. The Mariners make a trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks sending RHP Taijuan Walker, and SS Ketel Marte to ARI in exchange for SS Jean Segura, CF Mitch Haniger, and LHP Zac Curtis. The Mariners make a trade with the Atlanta Braves sending RF Alex Jackson and a player to be named later to ATL in exchange for RHP Max Povse and RHP Rob Whalen. Mariners sign RHP Lindsey Caughel off of free agency to a minor league contract. 

NOVEMBER ADDITIONS- LHP Dean Kiekhefer, C Carlos Ruiz, 3B Danny Valencia, RHP Ryan Cook, LHP James Pazos, SS Taylor Motter, SS Jean Segura, OF Mitch Haniger, LHP Zac Curtis, RHP Rob Whalen. 

NOVEMBER SUBTRACTIONS- RHP Adrian Sampson, OF Norichika Aoki, LHP Vidal Nuño, C Steve Baron, RHP Paul Blackburn, RHP Tom Wilhelmsen, RHP Zack Littell, RHP Andrew Kittredge, 1B Dalton Kelly, RHP Dylan Thompson, OF Stefen Romero, LHP David Rollins, SHP Pat Venditte, RHP Taijuan Walker, SS Ketel Marte, RF Alex Jackson. 

DECEMBER - The Mariners signed RHP Christian Bergman off of free agency to a minor league deal and invited him to Spring Training. C Sebastian Valle signed off of free agency to a minor league contract. SHP Pat Venditte outrighted to AAA Tacoma. RHP Ryan Weber outrighted to AAA Tacoma. RHP Zach Lee designated for assignment. LHP Dean Kiekhefer designated for assignment. Mariners sign RHP Casey Fien off of free agency. Mariners sign LHP Marc Rzepczynski off of free agency. Mariners make a trade with the San Francisco Giants sending a player to be named later to SF in exchange for RHP Chris Heston. 3B Richie Shaffer designated for assignment. RHP Kevin Gadea claimed off of waivers by the Tampa Bay Rays. LHP Dean Kiekhefer outrighted to AAA Tacoma. Mariners make a trade with the Atlanta Braves sending LHP Tyler Pike to ATL. Mariners sign C Ryan Casteel off of free agency to a minor league deal. RHP Arquimedes Caminero released. Mariners sign RF Kyle Waldrop off of free agency to a minor league deal and invite him to Spring Training. 

DECEMBER ADDITIONS- RHP Casey Fien, LHP Marc Rzepczynski, RHP Chris Heston. 

DECEMBER SUBTRACTIONS - RHP Zach Lee, LHP Dean Kiekhefer, RHP Kevin Gadea, LHP Tyler Pike, RHP Arquimedes Caminero.

JANUARY - The Mariners make a trade with the Kansas City Royals sending RHP Nathan Karns to KC in exchange for OF Jarrod Dyson. The Mariners make a trade with the Baltimore Orioles sending RF Seth Smith to BAL in exchange for RHP Yovani Gallardo and cash. Mariners sign LF Willie Argo off of free agency to a minor league deal. Mariners make a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays sending SS Carlos Vargas, CF Mallex Smith, and RHP Ryan Yarbrough to TB in exchange for LHP Drew Smyly. RHP Cody Martin designated for assignment. The Mariners make a trade with the Atlanta Braves sending LHP Luiz Gohara and LHP Thomas Burrows to ATL in exchange for CF Mallex Smith and RHP Shae Simmons. RHP Cody Martin outrighted to AAA Tacoma. Mariners sign RHP Jean Machi off of free agency to a minor league deal and invite him to Spring Training. C Jesus Sucre designated for assignment. The Mariners make a trade with the Oakland Athletics sending C Jason Goldstein to OAK in exchange for LHP Dillon Overton. RHP Jonathan Aro designated for assignment. Mariners claim C Tuffy Gosewisch off waivers from the Atlanta Braves. Mariners invite C Sebastian Valle, C Tyler Marlene, C Marcus Littlewood, 2B Tyler Smith, and OF Tyler O'Neill to Spring Training. Mariners sign LHP Nick Hagadone off of free agency to a minor league deal.

 JANUARY ADDITIONS - OF Jarrod Dyson, RHP Yovani Gallardo, LHP Drew Smyly, CF Mallex Smith, RHP Shae Simmons, LHP Dillon Overton, C Tuff Gosewisch.

JANUARY SUBTRACTIONS - RHP Nathan Karns, RF Seth Smith, SS Carlos Vargas, CF Mallex Smith, RHP Ryan Yarbrough, RHP Cody Martin, LHP Thomas Burrows, LHP Luiz Gohara, C Jesus Sucre, C Jason Goldstein, RHP Jonathan Aro.

FEBRUARY - Mariners invite RHP Jonathan Aro, and C Jesus Sucre to Spring Training. C Jesus Sucre and RHP Jonathan Aro both outrighted to AAA Tacoma. The Mariners make a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays sending C Jesus Sucre to TB for a player to be named later. The Los Angeles Dodgers claim OF Franklin Gutierrez off of waivers from the M's. 

FEBRUARY SUBTRACTION (as of 2/11/17) - OF Franklin Gutierrez. 

Below you will find my projected lineup and rotation for the upcoming 2017 season, as well as some Spring Training games. 

Projected Lineup for Opening Day 2017- Jarrod Dyson* LF, Jean Segura SS, Robinson Canó 2B, Nelson Cruz DH, Kyle Seager 3B, Mike Zunino C, Dan Vogelbach** 1B, Mitch Haniger RF, Leonys Martin CF. *Will platoon with Guillermo Heredia **Will platoon with Danny Valencia. 

BENCH - Carlos Ruiz C, Danny Valencia 1B/OF, Shawn O'Malley INF/OF, Taylor Motter INF, Guillermo Heredia OF, Ben Gamel OF, D.J. Peterson 1B, Mike Freeman INF, RHP Chris Heston, RHP Rob Whalen, RHP Tony Zych, RHP Casey Fien, LHP Paul Fry, LHP James Pazos, LHP Zac Curtis. 

STARTING ROTATION - RHP Felix Hernandez, LHP James Paxton, RHP Hisashi Iwakuma, LHP Drew Smyly, RHP Yovani Gallardo. 

BULLPEN - LHP Ariel Miranda, LHP Marc Rzepczynski, RHP Shae Simmons, RHP Nick Vincent, RHP Evan Scribner, RHP Dan Altavilla, RHP Edwin Diaz. 

This is Tom Hayden signing off saying Go Mariners! Follow @Mariners365 on Twitter and Instagram for daily Spring Training updates. #TrueToTheBlue #GOMS