Mariners add Fernando Rodney, is there still room for Nelson Cruz?


Aug 30, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz (17) takes batting practice before the game against the Minnesota Twins at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

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

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

PlayerPlayer SortPosSalarySalary SortPctPct SortWARPWARP SortWARP/$MWARP/$M Sort$/WARP$/WARP Sort

Robinson Cano
Cano RobinsonDNP$24,000,0002400000033.17%33.170.0000

Felix Hernandez
Hernandez FelixDNP$22,857,1432285714331.59%31.590.0000

Hisashi Iwakuma
Iwakuma HisashiDNP$6,500,00065000008.98%8.980.0000

Corey Hart
Hart CoreyDNP$6,000,00060000008.29%8.290.0000

Willie Bloomquist
Bloomquist WillieDNP$2,800,00028000003.87%3.870.0000

Michael Saunders
Saunders MichaelDNP$2,300,00023000003.18%3.180.0000

Logan Morrison
Morrison LoganDNP$1,750,00017500002.42%2.420.0000

Dustin Ackley
Ackley DustinDNP$1,700,00017000002.35%2.350.0000

Danny Hultzen
Hultzen DannyDNP$1,700,00017000002.35%2.350.0000

John Buck
Buck JohnDNP$1,000,00010000001.38%1.380.0000

Franklin Gutierrez
Gutierrez FranklinDNP$1,000,00010000001.38%1.380.0000

Charlie Furbush
Furbush CharlieDNP$750,0007500001.04%1.040.0000

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.” ( 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.