This is it! After years of losing, the Mariners are finally going for it! They signed one of baseball's best players to the third-largest contract in MLB history. And...that's about it, apparently.
Seattle broke the bank to land Robinson Cano, a signal to the rest of baseball that the Mariners no longer plan to be divisional doormats. But the bank is, seemingly, quite broken. Ken Rosenthal reports that M's officials are telling agents and other club executives that they're about done spending.
This is obviously not a contending team just yet. Cano's great, but he's one man. And the Mariners' other signings, Logan Morrison, Corey Hart, and Franklin Gutierrez, are injury-prone stopgaps. So what was the grand plan here? Cano is 31, with just a few years left of his prime, so you'd expect Seattle to try and go for it now—especially since it's not as if there are any big commitments coming off the books any time soon.
It's too early to call the front office dumb, short-sighted, foolish, unaccountable, etc. (But file the adjectives away for later.) The Mariners could be outright lying, and are preparing to make another big splash. They could be spreading this news as a negotiating strategy, though agents don't particularly care about excuses for lowball initial offers, which are standard. They could be focusing on the trade market and landing David Price. Or, they could be like so many front offices before them, and believe that a single marquee free agent is enough to sell tickets, and Robinson Cano quietly plays out his career in the relative anonymity of a string of fourth-place finishes, and the Mariners' front office is as dysfunctional as we all thought.
Or maybe Kurt Suzuki is the final piece of the puzzle.