Mariners Acquire Mallex Smith, then trade for Drew Smyly

The Mariners have been very busy this offseason. They executed two trades within hours and ended up with starting pitcher Drew Smyly.

The Seattle Mariners just completed two more trades within an hour and a half of each other Wednesday afternoon. The first trade brought speedy outfielder Mallex Smith to Seattle in exchange for two minor league left-handed pitchers.

Smith was then traded to the Tampa Bay Rays for starting pitcher Drew Smyly. At least Smith doesn’t need to move across the country now. This move affects all three teams positively in real baseball, but what about fantasy?

Let’s talk about the team that started this first, the Mariners. Before the trades, the team’s outfield was Leonys Martin, Danny Valencia, and Jarrod Dyson. Seattle traded for Valencia in mid-November and Dyson just five days ago.

Smith would have made this outfield more legitimate, but I think they are set with the group they have.

Smyly, on the other hand, makes this rotation dangerous. The team traded Taijuan Walker two months ago and acquired Yovani Gallardo the same day Dyson joined the team.

If you’re keeping track, that’s six trades in less than two months.

As of now, the Mariners rotation is Felix Hernandez, Hisashi Iwakuma, James Paxton, Gallardo, and Smyly. That’s a solid one through five.

Smyly finished the year with an ugly 4.88 ERA and 1.272 WHIP. However, he had a career-high 30 starts and 175.1 innings pitched.  He had 167 strikeouts, but 49 walks. He did struggle some against his new American League West opponents last season.

Smyly was my No. 38 pitcher before the move. I think he will move up a couple of spots when I post my position rankings, now that he’s away from the AL East.

I already wrote about both the Atlanta Braves (here) and Rays (here). Without going into full detail again, here’s how it affects the two teams.

The Braves weren’t starting Smith anyway. Ender Inciarte, Matt Kemp, and Nick Markakis slot ahead of him. Smith was my sleeper pick of the group, but now he’s buried on the Rays depth chart.

The Rays have Steven Souza, Kevin Keirmaier, Corey Dickerson, and recently added Colby Rasmus. Smith will likely start the year in Triple-A, hurting any fantasy value he currently has. If one of the outfielders struggle or the Rays are out of the division hunt early, he may get the call. Then, it becomes a race to the waiver wire.

The Mariners have made six trades in the last six months. I hope they’re done because I can’t keep up anymore, but I doubt it.

All in all, Smyly gets a small boost by moving out west. Smith loses all hope in re-draft leagues and the Braves are looking towards 2019 and beyond.