Merrill Kelly of the Arizona Diamondbacks is traded to Seattle Mariners
Merrill Kelly is one of the best trade chips the Arizona Diamondbacks have. He is under a team friendly contract with a team option for next year. He has been durable once again not missing any starts this year. The option is only 5.25 million, which is eminently affordable for every team. He has been dominating his last few starts. He owns a 3.59 FIP in his last 15 or so starts. The Dbacks will set a high price on Kelly but teams might pay that price if they need a starting pitcher. The Mariners need help in their rotation after suffering numerous injuries. The Mariners also want someone, I’m assuming, to be able to play for them past this year. Merrill Kelly fits that and he is cheap. The Mariners also have a well-regarded farm system which fits what the Dbacks want. My fellow sister site Sodo Mojo gave me the idea of Merrill Kelly to the Mariners. I honestly thought that the Mets would work better so watch out for them but I can also easily see the Mariners wanting Kelly. I prefer their prospects to the Mets too as do the Dbacks I’m sure.
Now I was tempted to aim higher for the Dbacks in their return for Merrill Kelly. I’d love for them to end up with Juan Then or another of their top-7 prospects. However I feel this is a solid return for 1 1/2 years of Kelly. Brandon Williamson is the Mariners #8 prospect and is a talented left-handed pitcher. He is currently in Double-AA after being drafted in the 2nd round of the 2019 draft. He has the potential to develop into a mid-rotation starter, though nothing is guaranteed, and has struck 88 batters in 55 innings. Meanwhile, Austin Shenton is the team’s #17 prospect and plays 3B. That’s crucial as that is the weakest spot for the Arizona Diamondbacks minor league system. The Dbacks need more 3B depth and Shenton is relatively close to the Majors. He’s currently in Double-AA after being taken in the 5th round of the 2019 draft. He can hit for contact and power. His defense is average but could improve. Overall, neither of these guys will end up being someone that the Mariners will miss if they can make the playoffs in this year or next and break the streak. The Diamondbacks would gain two younger prospects who might make it to the Majors or might not. They are worth the risk though.