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Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

Posted on: January 31, 2012 12:16 pm
Edited on: January 31, 2012 12:38 pm

By Matt Snyder

The Blue Jays had to field some questions from a few disgruntled fans Monday night in their State of the Franchise meeting concerning a seeming lack of major moves this offseason. At one point, general manager Alex Anthopolous reportedly discussed a trade that he didn't make because he would have had to give up a "major-league ready player" in return.

And reliable Toronto Globe and Mail reporter Jeff Blair says sources tell him the proposed deal was third baseman Brett Lawrie for then-Seattle starting pitcher Michael Pineda (Update: Geoff Baker of the The Seattle Times back up this assertion). The Blue Jays refused to deal Lawrie, so instead the Mariners went out and flipped Pineda for then-Yankees designated hitter Jesus Montero.


Pineda-for-Montero swap
The Mariners interest in Lawrie makes a ton of sense. Not only is he a great young talent, but M's GM Jack Zduriencik was the Brewers director of amateur scouting when they drafted Lawrie in the first round 2008. Plus, the Mainers have a hole at third.

But, personally, the most interesting part here is from the Blue Jays' angle. Lawrie is only 22 and had a great debut for the Jays last season, hitting .293/.373/.580 with nine homers, 25 RBI and 26 runs in just 171 plate appearances. That's a line that has future star written all over it. Pineda, though, is only 23 and was an All-Star for Seattle last season. He faded down the stretch, but still struck out 173 hitters in 171 innings. Considering the Blue Jays need pitching more than hitting at this point, that they could play Jose Bautista at third and also that they have a handful of young outfielders, this move might have made some sense.

Instead, it seems Anthopolous played his own little game of Would You Rather Have and elected he wanted Lawrie more than Pineda (but wait, how could he possibly "compare" a third baseman and a pitcher?!?).

And when Anthopolous did balk at making the move, it opened the door for the Yankees to make a deal that strengthened their pitching staff.

Only time will tell on what would have been the right move here for the Blue Jays, but it's certainly an interesting nugget on a slow Tuesday to chew on.

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Since: May 8, 2007
Posted on: February 1, 2012 9:57 am

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

As a Jays' fan, I would have been furious if the Jays' brass dealt Lawrie for Michael Pineda. Don't get me wrong, I think Pineda is legit, and I'm not thrilled with the idea of facing him in pinstripes for the foreseeable future. However, Brett Lawrie has the potential to be a star, and he showed tons of reasons to believe in that last year. Whether he was tearing up AAA and waiting for the Jays to wisen up, and promote him, or collecting walk-off hits for the big league club. 

Although the Jays have work to do in their rotation, they have a ton of arms on the way, and would ultimately have been looking to flip them for a 3rd baseman, which just recreates the problem if you ask me. Bautista isn't really an option at 3rd unless he volunteered to go there. Anthopoulos has a way of honoring promises to his players, and Bautista signed in Toronto to be an outfielder. He showed he's willing to sacrifice and be a leader when the need arises (injury), but I don't expect the Jays to plug him in at 3rd until his range declines significantly in the outfield later in his contract.

Ulimately I believe AA made the right call on this one, and I believe Brett Lawrie will ultimately be a much more valueable player than Pineda. But I guess only time will tell.... 

Since: May 18, 2010
Posted on: January 31, 2012 4:26 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

A very real chance that Lawrie could be the best 3rd baseman in the history of the franchise, it is much easier to find a solid pitcher than that level of 3rd baseman.

Since: Jan 19, 2010
Posted on: January 31, 2012 4:23 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

i'm aware of where he played up until last year. Thank you. i meant they have been waiting for a canadian born star, not him in particular. Being canadian myself dont underestimate having a cdn star on the team. But now that they have seen him for half year, there's no way there trading him unless it's for someone already established. like in a package for a king felix, or something like that. Too much downside for the jayz if he turns into a stud somewhere else.

Since: Jul 14, 2008
Posted on: January 31, 2012 2:14 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

Alvarez or Drabek could be as good or better then Pineda down the road. I think Alvarez has a better chance just because of his size and caliber of pitches he has. Drabek will make it but it may take a little long to develop him.

Since: Jan 31, 2012
Posted on: January 31, 2012 1:28 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda


Since: Jun 3, 2010
Posted on: January 31, 2012 1:20 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

Dimpled Balls: I'd go Lawrie.

Wrighter41: Lawrie was in the Brewers' system until last offseason when the Jays traded Shaun Marcum for him. I guess you mean he debuted with the Blue Jays?

- Matt

Since: Jan 19, 2010
Posted on: January 31, 2012 1:16 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

whether they needed the pitcher more or not, AA couldnt do this trade..jayz fans been waiting for a homegrown star since 1977, now that they might have one, and someone with a huge personality, couldnt trade him.. unless they got a guaranteed cy young winner the downside was too jayz have no prospects coming at third, or infield for that matter,,catchers, OF & pitchers is what they have coming.

Since: Jul 14, 2008
Posted on: January 31, 2012 1:10 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

No thanks i'll keep Lawrie. So Lawrie and Jesus Montero are the same caliber player. Can we do a "Would you rather have " with those 2 please. Thanks

Since: Jun 3, 2010
Posted on: January 31, 2012 12:36 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

There were several questions going after the Jays' brass, including one guy who said he was "angry" at them for not signing Prince Fielder AND Yu Darvish. I definitely didn't mean to say all fans were in that boat.

Thanks for reading.

- Matt

Since: Jan 4, 2007
Posted on: January 31, 2012 12:33 pm

Report: Mariners wanted Lawrie for Pineda

Disgruntled fans? I am a fan, and certainly not disgruntled. I am stoked about the bullpen improvement, having Lawrie at 3rd, re-signing Kelly Johnson, Arencibia having a full season behind him and all of the good, young talent at SP. I can only imagine another solid year out of Romero, Morrow and Cecil, and then having some breakout seasons from the likes of Alvarez or Drabek along with a healthy McGowan! Go Jays!

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