When the Seattle Mariners made the trade for veteran first-baseman/designated hitter Carlos Santana, not many thought much about what the return was because they weren’t highly ranked prospects. However, how did the two players the club traded to Kansas City perform after the trade?
In the trade for Santana, the M’s traded reliever Wyatt Mills and A-ball starter William Fleming. Mills was a 3rd round pick out of Gonzaga in 2017, but has always been a pure reliever. Fleming was selected in the 11th round of the 2021 draft. After being sent to the Royals, Mills bounced up and down between the big leagues and Triple-A. In the majors, he pitched 20.2 innings and had a 4.79 ERA. For the Royals Triple-A team, he pitched 14 innings and had a 2.57 ERA. In December he was Designated For Assignment by the Royals, and was traded to the Red Sox, who cleared room on their 40 man roster for Mills by DFA’ing first baseman Eric Hosmer.
Fleming was sent to the Royals High-A team, and he had similar numbers to the ones he put up in Low-A Modesto. He started 11 games, pitched 54.2 innings, and had a 5.10 ERA. His strikeout per nine and walks per nine numbers dipped slightly from his time with the Nuts, but they only dipped by less than one point.
Mariners Draft Spotlight
With the Mariners having three picks in the top 30 of the 2023 MLB Draft, it is going to be exciting to see what Amateur Scouting Director Scott Hunter and the Mariners do with those three selections. One player who may be available to them with the first of their three picks is Stanford infielder/outfielder Tommy Troy. The 20-year-old stands at 5-foot-10 and weighs 197 pounds. So far in college he has mostly played second base, but has played some shortstop, and split time at both second and short in the Cape Cod League in the summer. Troy has also played all three outfield spots for the Cardinal.
He played in 55 games this season for Stanford and put up a .339/.371/.568 slash line. He hit 7 home runs and had 25 extra base hits. In 30 Cape Cod League games, Troy slashed .310/.386/.531 with 5 homers and 13 extra base hits.
Prosects Live noted his aptitude at second base, but say he is most likely to be, “tested at shortstop for the Cardinal going forward”. If he can continue to put up good numbers for Stanford, he could find himself in the conversation for the Mariners who have three picks at the end of the first round.
Joe Doyle of Prospects Live had this to say about Tommy Troy:
“Tommy Troy is a versatile defender with enough athleticism to handle any of the three infield roles, as well as left field. Offensively, he’s shown budding exit velocities and a keen eye at the plate, despite a rough go of things on the Cape where poor umpiring derailed an otherwise impressive display of approach. Troy projects a potential average regular at the next level, though he lacks a carrying tool and is more likely a sum of his parts type of player. Those are the types of players that play a decade at the highest level.”
Mariners Minor League Transactions
The Mariners have made multiple minor league free agent signings in the last few weeks. The first was RHP Rodney Hutchison who spent was signed midway through the 2022 season after being released by the Yankees. He spent most of his time in Modesto after joining the organization, and had a 2.05 ERA in 22 innings for the Nuts. The club also signed RHP Ryder Ryan, who is a 27 year old who had a 3.64 ERA in 59.1 innings for the Texas Rangers Triple-A affiliate.
The M’s also signed a pair of catchers to minor league deals: Brian O’Keefe and Jacob Nottingham. O’Keefe spent most of last year with Triple-A Tacoma and got to make his big league debut at the end of the season. The 29-year-old slashed .253/.330/.449 with 13 home runs for the Rainiers in 83 games. Nottingham is famous for going back and forth between the Brewers and Mariners multiple times during the 2021 season. He played in 89 games for the Baltimore Orioles Triple-A team last season and hit .229/.333/.425. Both should be Triple-A depth at the catcher position for this year. The team also signed outfielder Erik Stock who has not played any pro ball yet.
Mariners Prospects in the News
The MLB Pipeline team came together to write about a player from each organization who they believe will have a breakout 2023 campaign. They predict it will be a young middle-infielder who wouldn’t surprise them if he, “starts coming up in top 100 conversations.”
Jerry Dipoto spoke on 710 Seattle Sports that one young arm in the Mariners system is worth keeping an eye on as we head into Spring Training.
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