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News » Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-01-18

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-01-18

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-01-18
The Mariners still hope to sign right-hander Josh Fields, their first choice in the June 2008 draft out of Georgia.

Talks with Fields' agent, Scott Boras, are ongoing, and the club would like to have the short reliever in camp for spring training.

If Seattle can't get Fields' signature on a contract, however, it won't be the end of the world. The club would get a draft pick, giving the Mariners three first-round picks in the next draft in June.

The Mariners already have their own pick in the draft, No. 2 overall, after a 101-loss season, and the Phillies' pick, No. 28 overall. The club took Fields with the 20th pick in last June's draft, and under baseball rules, if Seattle can't sign him, the Mariners get an extra pick immediately following the 20th pick this year, which belongs to the Blue Jays.

Seattle also has a sandwich pick as compensation for Raul Ibanez going to the Phillies, and they have the second pick in the second round as well.

"To have five of the first 40 or so picks is a good situation," Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik said. "It's the best way to stockpile talent for the organization."

Zduriencik owes his job to his ability to stockpile talent in Milwaukee over the last half-decade. But in his current role, with the bigger picture to consider, it's not all about the draft.

"I don't sit here saying this is the greatest thing in the world," he said. "You gave up things to get those picks, in this case (Raul) Ibanez and Fields. But at the end of the day you have what you have. We'd like to have Josh Fields be with us."

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: January 18, 2009

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