MLB

Trade grades – Seattle Mariners swing big with deal for Jesse Winker and Eugenio Suarez

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The trade: The Mariners acquire LF Jesse Winker and 3B Eugenio Suarez from the Reds for LHP Brandon Williamson, RHP Justin Dunn and OF Jake Fraley

Mariners fans have been sweating it out the past few days, imploring Jerry Dipoto to do something as free agents sign and other teams wheel and deal. You know Trader Jerry had something up his sleeve, however, and he didn’t disappoint with this five-player swap. The Mariners needed offense in a big way after hitting .226/.303/.385 a year ago and finishing 11th in the AL in runs — and even that total was boosted by an unrepeatable performance with runners in scoring position (the Mariners scored 697 runs, but created an estimated 655).

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Winker, who has two years of team control remaining, should definitely help here as a high-OBP hitter coming off his best season (.305/.394/.556), but it’s not clear if Suarez brings much value despite his power ( 31 home runs in 2021 and 49 in 2019, but a .199/.293/.440 line over the past two seasons). Indeed, it appears the price for obtaining Winker included taking on the remaining years of Suarez’s contract — three years and $35 million. Not too egregious, but that’s a sunk cost if Suarez repeats his 2020 value (minus-0.7 WAR).

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