Already, we’ve got Prince Fielder II brewing down at the GM meetings in California, with the rumor mill percolating that the Mariners are poised for a run at free agent outfielder Josh Hamilton. Hey, more power to them. The rumors are buzzing because many baseball executives, agents and media members are all aware of the same thing they were aware of a year ago: the Mariners have the resources and the long-term payroll room to go after pretty much any free agent they want.
Again, just once for the record:
The Mariners are not a small market team.
Taxpayers helped build them a beautiful, state-of-the-art, cash-cow ballpark which takes away the need for them to play Moneyball like the A’s, or the Rays.
The Mariners have allowed most of their long-term contracts to run out the past few years while fielding last-place teams with payrolls designed to maintain or grow franchise value.
The Mariners are poised to reap a massive financial windfall from a renegotiated TV deal that will take their franchise value close to the $1 billion mark.
For more on this story visit: Geoff Baker, The Seattle Times