Well, that didn't take long.
The Rays and Mariners completed a six player trade this evening. Here are the details:
Rays get: Danny Farquhar, Brad Miller, Logan Morrison
Mariners get: Nathan Karns, C.J. Riefenhauser, Boog Powell…no, not that Boog Powell!!
Before I get into the fantasy impact of this trade, ESPN's Buster Olney tweeted the following after the deal went down:
Re: Mariners/TB trade -- GMs say there is a ton of trade conversation going on right now.— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) November 6, 2015
A TON of trade talk going on!!! Love it!!
New Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto didn't waste time making his first trade of the offseason to reshape the Mariners after a disappointing 2015 season. He gets a decent starter in Karns who went 7-5 with a 3.67 ERA., 4.09 FIP, a 1.28 WHIP while striking out nearly a batter per inning. He will slot right into the Mariners five man rotation.
In addition to Karns, Dipoto adds a reliever in Riefenhauser, but the main piece was outfield prospect Boog Powell. Powell tore up AA pitching this season, hitting .328-.408-.416 with a home run, 44 runs scored, 22 RBI and 11 stolen bases in 61 games. He earned a promotion to AAA hitting .257-.360-.364 with 2 home runs, 22 runs scored, 18 RBI and 7 stolen bases in 56 games. He has little power, but knows how to get on base and can steal a base as well.
The trade of Morrison opens up first base for Mark Trumbo or Jesus Montero, while dealing away Miller opens up the starting shortstop position to Ketel Marte, who hit well after his call up, hitting .283-.351-.402 with 2 home runs, 25 runs scored, 17 RBI and 8 stolen bases.
From the Rays point of view, they lose a decent starting pitcher, but get a couple decent bats in Miller and Morrison. Dealing Karns opens up a spot in the Rays rotation for Matt Moore, who will join Chris Archer, Erasmo Ramirez, Jake Odorizzi and Drew Smyly to form a pretty solid five man rotation.
Morrison could split time at first base job with James Loney, while Miller can play several positions. Morrison struggled at the plate in 2015, hitting just .225-.302-.383 with 17 home runs, 47 runs scored, 54 RBI and 8 stolen bases in 511 plate appearances.
Miller is coming off a season where he hit .258-.329-.402 with 11 home runs, 44 runs scored, 46 RBI and 13 stolen bases in 497 plate appearances. He improved both his walk rate and strikeout rate this season and should see time all over the field once again in 2016.
Not a big deal, but it's something. This might be the earliest trade I have seen in quite some time.
Hopefully there is many more to come this offseason.