Editor’s note: We continue our countdown of how MLB’s 30 teams rank in terms of fantasy baseball assets. At No. 29, here’s Dalton Del Don’s snapshot of the Seattle Mariners.
Other than the Orioles, we may be looking at the worst team in baseball here, at least for 2020. The Mariners are the heavy favorites to score the fewest runs in the American League, don’t have a top-80 SP according to ADP and don’t have a closer worth drafting.
Seattle is a fantasy wasteland.
Mallex Smith should finish among the league leaders in steals but will likely hurt you in every other category while doing so, while Dee Gordon remains as a cheaper source of speed in a utility role. Tom Murphy could be a batting average problem, but most catchers are and he’s a sneaky threat to hit 25 homers. Locked in a starting role and coming off posting an .878 OPS after the All-Star break, he’s also a real candidate to bat cleanup when in Seattle’s lineup.
Marco Gonzales is the team’s No. 1 starter, but Yusei Kikuchi (who showed increased velocity this spring), Justus Sheffield (former first-round pick who was the main return in the James Paxton deal) and Taijuan Walker (former top prospect) all have more upside and are intriguing fliers in deeper fantasy leagues.
THE BAT projects a 4.96 ERA and 1.45 WHIP for presumptive closer Matt Magill, who was sidelined with a sore throwing shoulder before the season’s start was put on hold, so the saves gig is as open in Seattle as any team in baseball right now.
Yoshihisa Hirano is a deep sleeper, as he pitched better than his ERA indicated last season and has some experience in the ninth inning, so he could get some saves, which are becoming increasingly tough to acquire as more teams spread out the closer’s role.