Carlos Santana, 1B
dude plays that strike zone like a true artiste


Anthony Spaulding, after Jon Paul Morosi, fancies the M's chances to play Santana at 1B next year:


The Mariners are looking at free agent first baseman Carlos Santana as a possible addition, sources told Jon Morosi of MLB Network.

However, Morosi says the Mariners and Santana have not had any “substantial talks” yet. 

... The 31-year-old Santana is coming off a season in which he hit 23 home runs, had 79 RBI and a 3.4 WAR while slashing .259/.363/.455. In his eight years with the Tribe, Santana has played over 143 games in seven of those seasons and has slashed .249/.365/.445. 

Along with Alonso, Santana is in a pool of first basemen that includes Eric HosmerLogan MorrisonLucas DudaMark ReynoldsMitch Moreland and Mike Napoli. The Indians extended the $17.4 million qualifying offer to Santana last week, and he has until Thursday to decide whether or not he picks it up.


Carlos Santana averages a quite amazing 105 walks per 162 games over his 8-year career, and Jerry Dipoto loves the buzzword "traffic."  In the last 7 years, as he has aged from 25 to 31, he has played from 143 to 154 games per year.

He slashed .259/.365/.445 last year, which echoes perfectly his .249/.365/.445 career line.  Amusingly that could be similar to Eric Filia's 90th-percentile upside.  How good is that or not, when the main thing you do is walk -- but you walk a mortal ton?  Santana's career OPS+ is a whopping 121.  Last year that would have been #2 in Seattle, to Boomstick - and Mitch Haniger.

He has a laughable 21% fish rate, which represents NOT the idea of Ben Gamel getting into a "zone" for two months, but Carlos Santana's routine ability to take control of pitch sequence.  This is contagious.  The Mariners want a CULTURE of professional at-bats and that is probably the largest benefit to bringing Santana here for a year or two.


Defensively he's bad.  Figure him for -10 runs a year.  Which amputates his WAR down to -- wait for it -- 3.0 per year.  That is as compared to Alonso's 0.5 (with us) and Valencia's -0.4.   Cleveland did make the $17.4 qualifying offer for him, so he'd cost the M's their what, #2 pick or so.

Dr. D heartily endorses the vague concept of "looking at" Carlos Santana, as he endorses the concepts of "being a good person," of "being kind to the environment" and similarly-useless vagaries.  Add Santana's 250 times on base to the M's current lineup and we'd see some rallies.  As the Indians did, with their 97 wins.





Hanjag's picture

As a 1B according to baseball ref he was a + defender last year between 10 to 13 runs above average depending on the metric. So he was a 3.4 BWAR guy even though he had a down year a 112 OPS+ vs 121 OPS+ career. I like the C the Z and the fact you do not need a platoon act with him. 


The lack of need for a platoon partner is a great point, Hanjag.

You get no sniff from Dipoto that we're going with Vogs, so we're going to have to pay, cash or prospect treasure, to get a 1B. Santana costs less in treasure that, say, an Abreu, but he's going to he's going to cost more overall, considering the length of the contract he will demand.

As a pure relative bargain buy (if 25 HR's and a .250 average 1B for $15M+ is a bargain). I have no issue with Santana.  In fact, I sort of like him.  But I would rather swap out parts for 2 years of Abreu, to tell you the truth.

Oh Vogs!  We hardly knew ye!

Will point out this about Santana;  last season was his best dWAR season with the glove.  He was a 0.0 guy, after being betweeh -1.1 and -1.4 the previous 4 seasons. Abreu is about a -1.3 guy.

Our own farmhand Andrew Aplin is reputed to be a ++ CF glove. If we don't go purchase an OF, not even Dyson, and use Aplin's LH bat to pair with Heredia's RHB, then we would have 4 athletic glovey OF's, two RHB and two LHB for essentially free.  Then you could bid big on FA P's or 1B.

Conversely, we might just decide that Aplin = Heredia, and include Heredia in a trade for Abreu.

The other OF option that makes sense, (besides Grichuk) is to trade the BoSox for Jackie Bradley Jr.  He's rumored to be on the block and as Stanton to Boston rumors swirl (where I thought he would end up, BTW.  Boston has to keep up with the Judges, er...Yankees, don't they?), Boston may be interested in shedding some future salary commitment.  Bradley is arb eligible this season, so he could be had for 4 seasons.  He's not a Control the Zone guy, but he brings some pop (43 HR's over the last two seasons), an upside bat (.833-ish OPS in both '15 and '16, .726 in '17) and a + glove in CF (+1.6 and + 1.3 dWAR the past two seasons).  Bradley would begin  to get expensive in '20, but we would have some freed up cash then.  If Boston scores Stanton soon, without giving up Bradley, let's go get him.

He's a lefty bat without big platoon splits.  He was actually a reverse split guy in '15 and '17, but hammered RHP to the tune of .902 and LHP at only .673 in '16...but even a .673 vL doesn't kill you.

And I think we could get Bradley.  Start with Diaz and you get Boston's attention pronto.  They want power BP arms just like the rest of the world. Is Heredia a Bradley lite?  I'm not buying that.

Betintendi and Betts aren't going anywhere for Boston.  Bradley may be the odd man out.  I like Grichuk a lot, as you know.  I like Bradley more.

Finding a 4th OF to add to Bradley, Gamel, Haniger won't be too tough. 

Bradley would be a great piece for the Marlins, but he's not dirt cheap in a year or two, and that seems to be their intent.

Of course, if we're confident our RF is named Otani, then maybe we're good with the OF we have.

I like Bradley, all the same.

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