- Sportsbooks have downgraded the Mariners’ projected 2019 win total to 71.5
- Seattle remade its roster in the offseason, shipping out All-Stars Robinson Cano, Edwin Diaz, and Jean Segura
- The Mariners were 89-73 in 2018 but finished a distant third in the AL West
It took longer than expected, but oddsmakers have finally wised up to the fact that the Mariners are going to be a total dumpster fire in 2019.
After careful consideration, sportsbooks have adjusted Seattle’s opening win total from 74.5 on February 11th to 71.5 on March 7th. That figure could easily dip again between now and Opening Day, but it’s a far more accurate reflection of the lack of Major League talent in the Emerald City following the Mariners’ offseason purge.
You can view the totals for all 30 Major League Baseball teams at our 2019 MLB Win Totals Tracker.
Seattle Mariners 2019 Projected Win Total
|2019 Projected Win Total||Over Odds||Under Odds||2018 Win Total|
Odds taken 03/07/19.
Mariners Are Looking to the Future
Mariners fans knew they could be in for a long season as early as October 15th when Seattle general manager Jerry Dipoto announced he needed to “reassess” his team’s roster with an eye towards 2020 and beyond.
“There’s no reason for us to start from scratch,” he said at the time, “but we have to assess where we are in terms of our age, our win curve, and what makes the most sense for us.”
It turns out what made the most sense to DiPoto was giving away his best talent for pennies on the dollar. The 50-year-old exec kicked off the Mariners fire sale on November 19th by trading ace James Paxton to the New York Yankees for a pair of minor leaguers and a pitcher with an ERA higher than the national deficit.
Dellin Betances was asked today about Yankees not adding Harper/Machado this offseason. He immediately pointed out the James Paxton trade as being one of the more under-hyped moves in MLB.
After highlighting Yanks’ other additions, Betances added: “This team is dangerous.”
— Coley Harvey (@ColeyHarvey) February 18, 2019
Mariners Key Departures and Arrivals
|Robinson Cano (2B)||Jay Bruce (OF)|
|Edwin Diaz (RP)||Edwin Encarnacion (DH)|
|James Paxton (SP)||JP Crawford (SS)|
|Jean Segura (SS)||Anthony Swarzak (RP)|
|Nelson Cruz (DH)||Omar Narvaez (C)|
Dipoto followed up that fleecing on December 3rd with a pair of multiplayer deals that are likely to set the franchise back by half a decade. First he traded eight-time All-Star Robinson Cano and All-Star closer Edwin Diaz to the Mets for outfielder Jay Bruce, reliever Anthony Swarzak, and three prospects who are barely old enough to shave.
The Seattle Mariners have agreed to a trade that will send Edwin Diaz and Robinson Cano and $20 million to the New York Mets, according to multiple reports. pic.twitter.com/PAPMf5fKF6
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) December 2, 2018
Next he unloaded All-Star shortstop Jean Segura and pitchers Juan Nicasio and James Pazos to the Phillies for shortstop JP Crawford and Carlos Santana. Santana was then sent to the Indians 10 days later for whatever remains of Edwin Encarnacion.
Mariners traded in last 27 days:
C Mike Zunino
OF Guillermo Heredia
LH Michael Plassmeyer
LH James Paxton
RH Alex Colome
2B Robinson Cano
Closer Edwin Diaz
SS Jean Segura
LH James Pazos
RH Juan Nicasio
Also Nelson Cruz, Denard Span, Nick Vincent, Cameron Maybin now free agents
— Greg Johns (@GregJohnsMLB) December 3, 2018
Within the span of two hours DiPoto transformed the Mariners from an AL West contender into a triple-A team.
The Cupboard is Nearly Bare
There are still a few familiar faces in Seattle’s clubhouse, but many of them are still around because their contracts and declining performances make them nearly impossible to unload. Felix Hernandez is a prime example.
The former Cy Young winner posted a career-high 5.55 ERA in 2018 and saw his WHIP balloon to 1.400 after leading the league in that category in 2014. He’s still on the books for $27 million this season.
Felix Hernandez gave up four runs (a two-run double in third and two-run HR in fourth) in four innings in ‘B’ game vs. Korean squad. Says he got his work and felt pretty good, but “made a few mistakes and they made me pay.”
— Greg Johns (@GregJohnsMLB) March 5, 2019
The Mariners are also shelling out $16 million this year for right hander Mike Leake, who was 10-10 with a 4.36 ERA in 2018. He’s only had one winning season in the last three years, and that was in 2017 when he appeared in just five games.
A double digit drop off from one year to the next is significant, but it isn’t without precedence. The 2019 Mariners are eerily reminiscent of the 2018 Marlins, who went from 77 to 63 wins after bidding adieu to their starting outfield and second baseman Dee Gordon. Gordon, incidentally, hit just .268 with the Mariners last season and lead the AL in times caught stealing.
Hit the Under
Hopefully you were savvy enough to snatch up the Mariners at 74.5 wins in mid-February. If not, there’s still value in their current 71.5 win projection at sportsbooks. Seattle will likely try to unload their remaining Major League talent near the trade deadline on July 31st, setting up a scenario in which they lose early and often during the second half of the season.
DiPoto has taken the right steps to build a contender in the future, but the present is going to be very ugly indeed.