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Now? Not so much. Not after getting outscored 31-6 by the Indians in a three-game sweep. Not after losing Erik Bedard to the disabled list (again). Not after falling seven-and-a-half games behind the first-place Angels.
Geoff Baker believes the front office is ready to give up on this season, which would be a bitter pill for the fans but really is the best thing for everyone, going forward. Further, Baker believes that Jarrod Washburn -- who just keeps humming along -- might soon be a Milwaukee Brewer:
Hardy is only under contract through next year, which is hardly what a rebuilding team like the Mariners will be looking for now that they are out of the playoff hunt. From Milwaukee's perspective, trading Hardy hurts clubhouse chemistry and forces you to thow a 21-year-old rookie in Escobar into the heart of a pennant race.
No, it makes more sense for the Brewers to deal Escobar to Seattle. But for Washburn alone? That would be quite a coup and I doubt it would happen.
That's why, yesterday, I mentioned the possibility of Brandon Morrow being included in such a deal, That would take Seattle's package to a whole other level. Would Morrow and Washburn fetch more than just Escobar? Probably. But I can't give you possible names because, frankly, Jack Zduriencik knows that entire Brewers system inside and out. There are a ton of possibilities and I'm sure he's got a list.
But, again, I don't see Hardy being a part of any deal for Washburn. If the M's can shake Escobar loose, though? And maybe a young pitcher besides? That's probably a deal the Mariners should make.