This off-season the Seattle Mariners need to restructure their pitching especially in the starting rotation.
Watching the World Series I noticed that not only do they need help at starting pitching they may need help in the bullpen as well. The Houston Astros and the Los Angeles have had good if not outstanding pitching in the playoffs well as the World Series however the bullpens been struggling at times.
The problem with the bullpen for both the Astros and Dodgers is using the same guys over and over again. An example is that former Mariner Brandon Morrow was used in four straight games. He was outstanding in the first three but was hit hard in the fourth game. It was an important game however the Dodgers should have gone in another direction. I am sure part of the problem is not having top relievers throughout the bullpen. The Astros bullpen has struggled throughout the playoffs as well. Most likely the winner of the World Series will be the one with the most success of the bullpen.
When it comes to the playoffs especially the World Series only four starters at the most likely are in the rotation so the fifth guy will be put in the rotation. Most likely he isn’t used to relieving all season unless he was a long man at some point. Even if he does have success in the playoffs it will knock someone else out of the bullpen.
Looking at the Mariners starting rotation at this point of the off-season for 2018 the top three not in any specific order will be James Paxton, Felix Hernandez and Mike Leake. The fourth starter could be Erasmo Ramirez. He is a guy who has experience both starting and relieving. So if the Mariners make the playoffs he could be valuable in the bullpen even though he might start all season because he has had the experience doing so. I am not saying he will be great at it however he is doing something that he has done before.
So what I see is that the Mariners need not only add at least one top starter if not two during the off-season whether by free agency or by trade they need to add to the bullpen as well. In my opinion the relievers they have that likely will start the season with them like Nick Vincent, Dave Phelps and closer Edwin Diaz won’t cut it. I am not sure whether the Mariners should go out and get a top notch reliever at this point because it is not a priority at this time however if they look to be one of the teams to make the playoffs in July I would say go get another top reliever because they will need one at that point.
I am sure everyone has an idea who they would like the Mariners to go after however the question is how much it will cost to get a top tier starting pitcher. I believe we will know shortly after the World Series is over or before Thanksgiving. Jerry Dipoto has made most of his big transactions in November. Go M’s.