The Mariners brought back Kendrys Morales in a deal with the Twins today, but they aren’t done attempting to upgrade.
According to FOX Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi, the Mariners have asked the Rockies about the availability of outfielder Drew Stubbs. Thomas Harding of MLB.com confirms the report and adds that the Rockies would be willing to listen if they receive a “young” and “controllable” pitcher in return.
Stubbs is a logical target for the Mariners, as they could use some center field help and another righty bat for their predominantly left-handed lineup. The 29-year-old has enjoyed a fine year with the Rockies, batting 297/.335/.498 with 10 home runs, 27 RBI, and 11 stolen bases over 82 games.
It’s worth noting that Stubbs has enjoyed most of his success at Coors Field, with a .999 OPS at home compared to a .620 OPS on the road. He entered this season with a .656 OPS over his previous three seasons, so we might not be seeing a breakout as much as some inflated numbers. Stubbs has struck out in 30 percent of his plate appearances this season and has drawn walks less often than ever before. He’s a fine defender and could be useful on the short-side of a platoon, but it might not be a bad idea for the Rockies to sell high on his nice year.
Long-time rotation mainstay Tom Koehler was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans on Monday and reliever Hunter Cervenka was recalled, the Marlins announced.
Koehler, 31, made 131 starts out of the Marlins’ rotation over the last five years, but his 12 this season have not been good, so the club hopes he can figure things out with a stint in the minors. He’s carrying a 7.92 ERA with a 44/29 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 innings. Koehler battled bursitis in his right shoulder in May and June, which may partially explain his struggles.
Cervenka, 27, posted a 4.50 ERA with a 34/21 K/BB ratio in 34 innings of relief with New Orleans. He hasn’t pitched in the majors yet this season, but compiled a 3.53 ERA over 43 1/3 innings in the bigs last year in the Marlins’ bullpen.
At the trade deadline, relief pitching is the name of the game and one of the names clearly available is Pat Neshek. Today Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports that the Nationals, Dodgers, and Red Sox are among the clubs who are closely scouting the Phillies reliever. Last week Ken Rosenthal reported that the Brewers and Rays were involved as well.
Neshek is an impending free agent, so he may come cheaper than Justin Wilson or some of the other bullpen arms available right now. The All-Star is 36 and is posting a fantastic season, featuring a 1.12 ERA and 45/5 K/BB ratio over 40.1 innings this season.