With the James Paxton trade to the Yankees, it is clear that the Mariners are wheeling and dealing. The player that I’d like the Sox to pursue is Dee Gordon, but not as a second baseman – as an outfielder.
It’s safe to say that Eloy Jimenez will show up in the outfield and will man one of the corners. So, I’d like to put Gordon at whatever other spot is open – but preferably center field. I absolutely love Engel’s defense, but Gordon is a significantly better hitter. And, hitting wins more games than defense.
Gordon may not be a power hitter, but neither did Engel. Gordon’s career slash is .289/.322/.364. He’s had three seasons where he has hit over .300. It’s doubtful that Engel will achieve that mark. Gordon’s strikeouts (80) were up in 2018, but they were still lower than Engel’s 129.
Gordon also bats from the left side, which makes his speed even more valuable. Imagine him as lead-off hitter with Tim Anderson following him in the two-hole. The speed would be impressive. Then picture Goldschmidt batting third and Carpenter fourth. Life would be nice for Sox fans. Engel’s lack of power and low on-base percentage will keep him low in the batting order – he’s just not good enough at the plate to bat at the top.
Gordon has not done as well in Seattle as he did when he was in Miami and Los Angeles. Prior to joining the Mariners, he led the league three times in stolen bases. In Seattle, he led the league in getting caught. His drop in performance could be just what the Sox need to get him at a bargain price.
The Mariners still owe him $27.1 million and he’s got a nice option for the 2021 season that involves plate appearances. He’s still relatively affordable and he can be a game changer. The Mariners need starting pitching, so the Sox could trade one of the Dylans – either Dylan Covey or Dylan Cease (don’t worry – I’ve got pitching covered on the next slide). Hahn could also throw in another player, like a non-prospect minor leaguers like Joel Booker or Tyler Frost.