Dipoto likes athletic mix in Mariners' outfield

Gamel, Haniger, Heredia join competition for corner spots

Dipoto likes athletic mix in Mariners' outfield

SEATTLE -- While the Mariners again will feature a core of proven veterans built around Robinson Cano, Nelson Cruz, Felix Hernandez and Kyle Seager next year, general manager Jerry Dipoto is taking a different approach in the outfield, where his team will be considerably younger and more athletic.

Though it's wise to never say never with Dipoto when it comes to making further moves, the Mariners' architect of change insists he's set now with an outfield that will see newcomer Mitch Haniger and 2016 additions Ben Gamel and Guillermo Heredia competing for playing time in the corner spots, flanking returner Leonys Martin in center.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners retain 7 arbitration-eligible players

Mariners retain 7 arbitration-eligible players

SEATTLE -- The Mariners tendered contracts for 2017 to 32 players on their Major League roster on Friday, including seven arbitration-eligible players who would have otherwise become free agents.

The seven arbitration-eligibles are newly acquired shortstop Jean Segura, new first baseman Danny Valencia, center fielder Leonys Martin, lefty starter James Paxton, relievers Evan Scribner and Nick Vincent and catcher Jesus Sucre.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

RHP Weber outrighted to Triple-A Tacoma

RHP Weber outrighted to Triple-A Tacoma

SEATTLE -- Right-handed pitcher Ryan Weber was outrighted to Triple-A Tacoma by the Mariners on Friday after clearing waivers.

Seattle claimed the 26-year-old last month from Atlanta, then it designated him for assignment on Monday to open a 40-man roster spot after trading Minor League outfielder Alex Jackson to the Braves for pitchers Rob Whalen and Max Povse.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Source: Mariners, Rzepczynski near deal

Source: Mariners, Rzepczynski near deal

SEATTLE -- Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto is close to checking off one of the final boxes on his offseason to-do list as the club is nearing a two-year deal with left-handed reliever Marc Rzepczynski, a source told MLB Network's Jon Morosi on Thursday.

The club has not confirmed the report and the deal is pending a physical, according to sources. No terms of the contract have been confirmed. Rzepczynski made $2.95 million last season before becoming a free agent.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners outright switch-pitcher Venditte

Mariners outright switch-pitcher Venditte

SEATTLE -- The Mariners outrighted the contract of Pat Venditte to Triple-A Tacoma on Thursday as the switch-pitcher will remain in the organization after clearing waivers.

Venditte was designated for assignment last Wednesday to open a spot on their 40-man roster, which remains full at 40.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Dipoto looking for lefty 'pen help, rotation depth

Dipoto looking for lefty 'pen help, rotation depth

SEATTLE -- As general manager Jerry Dipoto and the rest of the Mariners' brass fly to the Winter Meetings outside Washington, D.C., on Sunday, they'll be lighter on baggage than many other clubs headed to the four-day gathering.

The Mariners already have done much of their heavy lifting and roster shifting, with Dipoto engineering six trades in the past month that checked off many of his offseason goals. Additionally, sources indicate Seattle is close to finalizing a two-year deal with free-agent lefty reliever Marc Rzepczynski that would fill another glaring need.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Peace & glove: Owners, players reach CBA deal

New agreement includes change to home-field advantage in World Series

Peace & glove: Owners, players reach CBA deal

IRVING, Texas -- Major League Baseball's players and owners reached a tentative five-year Collective Bargaining Agreement through the 2021 season on Wednesday night. The parties will follow up today with a formal document, which then must be ratified by representatives of both sides. 

At 8:40 p.m. ET, an assortment of happy players, owners, lawyers and staffers poured from meeting rooms to exchange handshakes and hugs. That's how quickly 36 hours of round-the-clock negotiations ended, nearly four hours before today's deadline of 12:01 a.m. ET to reach a deal. Short of an agreement, the sport was faced with the best-case scenario of an extension or owners could have imposed a lockout.

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Richard Justice is a columnist for MLB.com. You can follow him on Twitter @richardjustice. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bizarre 1994 Mariners commercial stars Big Unit

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Bizarre 1994 Mariners commercial stars Big Unit

Randy Johnson has accomplished a lot in his career. A Hall of Famer, he's also a five-time Cy Young Award winner who's racked up 4,875 career strikeouts and an MLB-record 10.6 strikeouts per nine innings. Once, he even hit a home run.

But his greatest accomplishment of all may not be any of those things. No, there's a strong possibility that it's actually his performance in this Mariners commercial from 1994, which he so kindly shared with the world on Instagram on Thursday. 

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Dipoto: Mariners looking for 'experienced starter'

Dipoto: Mariners looking for 'experienced starter'

SEATTLE -- Jerry Dipoto has solidified his lineup and position group with a flurry of six trades involving 19 players over the past 23 days. But the Mariners' general manager acknowledges one of his remaining priorities -- acquiring a veteran starting pitcher to bolster the rotation following Taijuan Walker's departure -- may need extra time to play out in the coming days.

"Usually in the best of times, the free-agent market takes time to come into focus and you'll really start to see more activity as we get to the Winter Meetings and coming out," Dipoto said. "From December to Christmas is pretty active for free agents, and I don't think this class will be any different."

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

The Next Big Leaguers: Mariners' O'Neill

A team-by-team look at future key contributors who starred in the 2016 Arizona Fall League

The Next Big Leaguers: Mariners' O'Neill

The Arizona Fall League always is loaded with talent, and it was stronger than usual in 2016. In the initial installment of MLBPipeline.com's "The Next Big Leaguers," which premieres Tuesday, we focused on five prospects: Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger, Twins shortstop Nick Gordon, Cubs outfielder Eloy Jimenez, Red Sox infielder Yoan Moncada and Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres.

We could have spotlighted many more promising prospects if not limited by time constraints, and below we'll do exactly that.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

One year made big difference for Montgomery

After being traded by Mariners, lefty helps Cubs win WS title

One year made big difference for Montgomery

SEATTLE -- A lot can happen in the course of a baseball season.

Just ask Mike Montgomery, who came to Spring Training with the Mariners in 2016 out of Minor League options and a long shot to land a spot on the 25-man roster ... yet he found himself on the mound recording the final out and picking up his first career save in the Cubs' dramatic 8-7 victory over the Indians in Game 7 of the World Series.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Piniella to learn Hall of Fame fate on Sunday

16-member committee to decide on Selig, Steinbrenner among 10 hopefuls

Piniella to learn Hall of Fame fate on Sunday

The Today's Game Era ballot for induction to the National Baseball Hall of Fame will be voted upon this Sunday at the Winter Meetings in National Harbor, Md. Five former Major League players, three executives and two managers will be considered, and the results of the voting will be announced on MLB Network's "MLB Tonight" and streamed live on MLB.com at 6 p.m. ET.

The players named on the ballot are Harold Baines, Albert Belle, Will Clark, Orel Hershiser and Mark McGwire. The three executives are John Schuerholz, Allan H. "Bud" Selig and George M. Steinbrenner. The two former managers are Davey Johnson and Lou Piniella.

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Manny Randhawa is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MannyRsports This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners acquire righties Whalen, Povse from Braves

Seattle sends outfielder Jackson, player to be named to Atlanta

Mariners acquire righties Whalen, Povse from Braves

SEATTLE -- Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto engineered his sixth trade of the offseason on Monday, dealing 2014 first-round Draft pick Alex Jackson to the Braves for young right-handed pitchers Rob Whalen and Max Povse.

The Mariners will also send a player to be named to complete the deal. Right-hander Ryan Weber, who was claimed off waivers from Atlanta three weeks ago, was designated for assignment to make room for Whalen on Seattle's 40-man roster.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners will still have work to do at Meetings

Dipoto seeking bullpen, rotation depth after flurry of offseason moves

Mariners will still have work to do at Meetings

SEATTLE -- With Major League Baseball's Winter Meetings set for next week just outside Washington, D.C., it's fair to wonder how many moves Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto has left to make after already engineering six offseason trades that have brought in 10 new players.

But remember, this is one of the most active GMs in baseball, and the latest shuffling has yet to fully address the shortage of left-handed relief and has also created more of a need in the rotation, so don't be surprised if Dipoto manages to do a little more holiday shopping when player agents and executives from all 30 teams gather for four days of conversation.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners get Segura in 5-player deal with D-backs

Haniger, Curtis also acquired in exchange for Walker, Marte

Mariners get Segura in 5-player deal with D-backs

The Mariners reeled in leadoff man Jean Segura from the D-backs on Wednesday evening, acquiring the shortstop in a five-player trade that also netted them outfielder Mitch Haniger and left-hander Zac Curtis. The trade was costly, as Seattle gave up right-hander Taijuan Walker and infielder Ketel Marte in return.

"We just feel at this point, this trade made more sense with where our roster is," Seattle general manager Jerry Dipoto said, "and Jean Segura fit this club about as well as any player we were looking at in the trade market."

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Jane Lee is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cano's foundation helping to build schools in Dominican Republic

Cano's foundation helping to build schools in Dominican Republic

SEATTLE -- A common refrain among successful individuals is to "remember where you came from." For Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano, that motto is more than just words as Thanksgiving approaches.

The seven-time All-Star's holiday spirit plays out far away from the Major League stadiums where he spends his summers.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

Mariners' O'Neill among Fall League's Top 25 prospects

Mariners' O'Neill among Fall League's Top 25 prospects

While the most talented team doesn't always win the championship, it did in the Arizona Fall League. The Mesa Solar Sox wrapped up the East Division crown on the final day of the regular season before rolling to an easy victory in the AFL's one-game playoff for its first title since 2003.

Mesa had the league's deepest lineup, as evidenced by its seven hitters who rank among the AFL's 20 best prospects below. The Solar Sox had star power with outfielders Eloy Jimenez (Cubs) and Bradley Zimmer (Indians) and second baseman Ian Happ (Cubs), all of whom sit in the 20s on MLBPipeline.com's Top 100 Prospects list. They also had emerging talents such as shortstop Yu-Cheng Chang and outfielder Greg Allen, who have been overshadowed in a deep Indians system, and league home run leader Brian Anderson (Marlins No. 4 prospect), who had support for making our list.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners release righty reliever Wilhelmsen

Mariners release righty reliever Wilhelmsen

The Mariners have released veteran right-handed reliever Tom Wilhelmsen, who was designated for assignment on Friday.

Wilhelmsen, who turns 33 next month, posted a 6.80 ERA in 50 appearances for the Rangers and Mariners this past season. He had a 3.60 ERA in 29 games with Seattle after joining the team in June.

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Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Edgar hopes to ride ballot momentum into Cooperstown

Mariners legend looks to build on gains made during last year's vote

Edgar hopes to ride ballot momentum into Cooperstown

SEATTLE -- For Edgar Martinez and his Hall of Fame supporters, the clock is ticking. But his peers are also talking, and that could be a good thing for his candidacy for enshrinement in Cooperstown, N.Y.

Martinez, the former Mariners great and the team's current hitting coach, was again among the players on the 2017 Hall of Fame ballot released on Monday by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cameron, Guillen, Rhodes get first shot on Hall of Fame ballot

Posada, Magglio, Wakefield among those seeking enshrinement in 2017

Cameron, Guillen, Rhodes get first shot on Hall of Fame ballot

Soon, members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America will cast their ballots for the Hall of Fame's Class of 2017.

Among their choices will be returners who fell just shy of the 75-percent threshold in last year's voting, a group that includes Jeff Bagwell (71.6 percent), Tim Raines (69.8) and Trevor Hoffman (67.3). There also are a few high-profile newcomers. Vladimir Guerrero was a feared hitter with 449 homers and a National League MVP Award, Ivan Rodriguez is third all-time among catchers in wins above replacement (WAR), and Manny Ramirez hit 555 homers but also was suspended twice for his use of performance-enhancing drugs.

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Andrew Simon is a research analyst for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners' O'Neill on MLB Pipeline's All-AFL team

Mariners' O'Neill on MLB Pipeline's All-AFL team

The Arizona Fall League's six-week season concluded with Saturday's championship game. And while it can be difficult to evaluate players in such a limited amount of time, especially with frequent roster fluctuations, some performances in the Fall League simply stand out more than others.

Here is a lineup of prospects who impressed in this year's Fall League as MLBPipeline.com's All-AFL Team:

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners add Shaffer, Motter, Pazos in 2 trades

Seattle sends Thompson, Kelly, Kittredge to Rays; Littell heads to Yanks

Mariners add Shaffer, Motter, Pazos in 2 trades

SEATTLE -- The Mariners acquired Richie Shaffer and Taylor Motter, two versatile players with some Major League experience, from the Rays on Friday in a trade for three Minor League prospects, and they also added hard-throwing southpaw reliever James Pazos from the Yankees in another deal.

Right-hander Dylan Thompson, Seattle's fourth-round Draft pick in 2015 and the club's No. 22-ranked prospect by MLBPipeline.com, was sent to Tampa Bay along with first baseman/outfielder Dalton Kelly and right-hander Andrew Kittredge. Right-hander Zach Littell, previously the Mariners' No. 14 prospect, was shipped to the Yankees for Pazos.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mariners protect Peterson, Fry, Vieira from Rule 5 Draft

Mariners protect Peterson, Fry, Vieira from Rule 5 Draft

SEATTLE -- Former first-round Draft pick D.J. Peterson, lefty reliever Paul Fry and flame-throwing Brazilian right-hander Thyago Vieira were added to the Mariners' 40-man roster on Friday as the club moved to protect several of its top prospects from the upcoming Rule 5 Draft.

The three additions put the Mariners' 40-man roster at 40, following a flurry of moves earlier in the day as Seattle acquired infielder/outfielders Taylor Motter and Richie Shaffer via trade with the Rays and left-hander James Pazos in a trade with the Yankees, lost reliever David Rollins on waivers to the Cubs, released outfielder Stefen Romero and designated reliever Tom Wilhelmsen for assignment.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cano raises the 12th Man flag at Seahawks game

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Cano raises the 12th Man flag at Seahawks game

Before every home game, the Seattle Seahawks invite a hometown icon to climb to the top of CenturyLink Field and partake in one of football's greatest traditions: the raising of the 12th Man flag, symbolizing the role Seattle fans play in their team's success. 

The list of past 12th Men (and Women) is a who's who of the Pacific Northwest: Gary Payton, Edgar Martinez, the Big Unit, even the one and only Sir Mix-a-Lot. And, prior to Sunday's game against the Eagles, Robinson Cano added his name to the group -- because while he's only called Seattle home since 2014, hitting 74 dingers will endear you to the home crowd.

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Mariners announce 2017 Spring Training schedule

Mariners announce 2017 Spring Training schedule

SEATTLE -- With the World Baseball Classic coming up in March, the Mariners will open Spring Training a week earlier than normal next year in preparation for their 2017 season.

The Mariners announced Thursday that pitchers and catchers will report on Feb. 14 to the Peoria Sports Complex in Arizona, and a 37-game Cactus League schedule kicks off on Feb. 25 against the Padres.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Felix to prep for WBC by playing winter ball

Mariners ace will join Venezuela League in December

Felix to prep for WBC by playing winter ball

SEATTLE -- When Felix Hernandez wrapped up a disappointing 2016 season in early October, he vowed to work hard this winter to return to "King" status for the Mariners. And his pledge to pitch in some games in the Venezuelan Winter League as well as on Venezuela's World Baseball Classic squad in March remain part of that plan, according to Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto.

Dipoto confirmed reports out of Venezuela that Hernandez expects to join the Navegantes del Magallanes club in late December and pitch in some Venezuela League games for the first time since 2003, when he was a 17-year-old just starting his pro career.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Early trades tweak Dipoto's offseason focus

Lefty relief, corner-outfield help atop Mariners' wish list

Early trades tweak Dipoto's offseason focus

SEATTLE -- Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto has shown for two years in a row that he's certainly not going to be shy about making deals wherever possible to upgrade his roster. So what's next for Dipoto, after moving quickly at the start of the offseason last week by trading for Carlos Ruiz from the Dodgers and Danny Valencia from the A's?

Dipoto checked off two of his winter boxes, with Ruiz ticketed as a much-needed veteran backup catcher to Mike Zunino and the versatile Valencia expected to be the right-handed-hitting tandem to rookie first baseman Daniel Vogelbach as well as a piece of the puzzle at the corner-outfield spots.

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Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Watch mascots try to pull off the #MannequinChallenge

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Watch mascots try to pull off the #MannequinChallenge

The "Mannequin Challenge" is not an easy feat to pull off. Sure, all it requires is remaining perfectly still for an extended period of time, but when was the last time you went 30 seconds without reaching for your cell phone? That's what makes the good ones so impressive

Some of MLB's mascots got together to create their own entry into the field, featuring a silly-stringed Orbit and a T-shirt cannon-wielding Mr. Met.

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