The Seattle Mariners’ deal with RHP Fernando Rodney was made official today. Will that leave room for former Texas Rangers Nelson Cruz?. The contract for Rodney is worth $14 million over 2 years. Per Jon Heyman
Fernando Rodney indeed has mariners deal. @jonahkeri 1st reported $14M/2 yrs.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) February 6, 2014
Rodney will likely serve as their closer.
But, with another $7 million a year being spent, does that leave room for Nelson Cruz?
Currently, the Mariners opening day payroll sits at $72,357,143 total salary, $6,029,762 avg salary for their top 12 players. Per Baseball Prospectus
Do they have room for a 13th player on the list? Seattle has said they are all in for this year. That could mean they are willing to add Nelson Cruz. Several insiders think that it is just a matter of time before Cruz lands in Seattle for a multi-year deal. Which it only makes sense for them to offer him a multi-year deal. It would be a waste if they didn’t. Mainly because the Mariners will lose a top draft pick, top 10 picks are protect, if they sign Nelson Cruz.
If Nelson Cruz doesn’t go to Seattle, he could return to the Rangers. Jon Daniels has said he has remained in contact. And that suggests the door is still open for him to return. But it still seems unlikely.
“We check in periodically, but nothing has changed,” Daniels said. “My expectation is he will sign elsewhere.” (MLB.com TR Sullivan)
You may wonder how the Mariners are able to spend the money they have this offseason. In the previous few years, they had a payroll in the mid $80 million range. But they now have a new TV deal with DirecTV Sports Network. The new deal is estimated to be worth $2 billion over 17 years. That’s an average of $118 million a year, which is a $73 million a year increase over their previous deal. But the TV deal may not have that huge of an impact.
But, they say they are all in, they are all in. It appears they have the money to spend and it seems like they are going to do just that. It is now probably just a matter of time before they add Nelson Cruz.