Posted February 04, 2014

Report: Mariners talking to Nelson Cruz, eyeing Fernando Rodney

MLB
Nelson Cruz will be activated for Monday's play-in game against the Rays. (Harry How/Getty Images)

Nelson Cruz hit 27 home runs and 76 RBI despite sitting out a 50-game PED suspension. (Harry How/Getty Images)

The Mariners have been linked as a front-runner to sign free-agent outfielder Nelson Cruz throughout the offseason, and the team now reportedly is in talks with the former Rangers slugger.

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports the Mariners and Cruz are getting more serious in their negotiations and Seattle is also targeting closer Fernando Rodney.

The Mariners are interested in adding Cruz’s power into a lineup that will feature star free-agent acquisition Robinson Cano. Cruz hit .266 with 27 home runs and 76 RBI while also sitting out a 50-game PED suspension tied to the Biogenesis scandal. He is believed to be seeking a multiyear deal.

Heyman writes that the M’s are open to going two years with the possibility of a third year. Signing Cruz would force the Mariners to give a draft choice to the Rangers after already forfeiting their first-round pick with the signing of Cano.

The Orioles and Tigers have also been linked to interest in Cruz. The Rangers are believed to be open to Cruz returning with a one-year deal.

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The Mariners reportedly are also interested in adding Rodney to a bullpen that finished 19-29 in one-run games and a league-worst 6-15 in extra-inning games last season. He reportedly is asking for $15 million over two years.


9 comments
CBSwriter
CBSwriter

The M's first round pick (sixth overall) is protected. But keep up the good work.

tracejuno
tracejuno

Teach your kids to cheat and take drugs and they might buy you a house some day.

lionsparkdonkey
lionsparkdonkey

A couple things:  The Ms would not technically give the Rangers draft pick.  The Rangers would get a supplemental pick.   Also, the Ms' pick is protected so they will not actually forfeit their first round pick for signing Cano.  The Ms would instead lose the supplemental pick they might get if someone signs Morales in time or if nobody signs him by June, the Ms would lose their 2nd round pick for Cano and 3rd round pick for Cruz.  


The Ms should also not actually sign Cruz for anything more than $7M per year.

BestTampaSportsFan
BestTampaSportsFan

Also funny how Rodney uses his arrows and this article says they are eyeing and targeting. 

Brotherfox
Brotherfox

@lionsparkdonkey  

Thank you.  It's surprising that a writer can be working for a prominent sports magazine like S.I. and misreport the status of Seattle's draft picks.  But he's not alone.  Same thing in SB Nation. 


The pick they'd lose by signing Cruz would technically be in the Second Round after the Competitive Balance Round A, the 46th pick.


I like your $7M figure, btw. That's the ballpark I also had in mind.

CBSwriter
CBSwriter

@Brotherfox @lionsparkdonkeyright, the comp balance rd A pick, that's IF nobody signs Morales before the draft. Complicated and some moving parts, but either way, the team doesn't lose its first round pick.