What Mariners' new acquisitions bring to the table

January 9th, 2024

MLB.com's Manny Randhawa and David Adler filled in on this edition of Daniel Kramer’s Mariners Beat newsletter. To read the full newsletter, click here. And subscribe to get it regularly in your inbox.

The Mariners swung a pair of major trades last week, fortifying their outfield and adding some much-needed pitching depth. With the acquisition of and from the Giants, as well as from the Rays, Seattle is bringing in a mix of the familiar and the new.

Here’s a look at what each player brings to the roster:

Mitch Haniger (OF)

There are three keys for Haniger as he returns to Seattle: health, health and … health. In all but two of the 33-year-old’s seven Major League seasons, he’s played in fewer than 100 games.

That includes last season with the Giants, when he appeared in 61 games and posted a career-low .631 OPS. When Haniger is regularly in the lineup, he’s dangerous. In 2018 and '21, he played in 157 games. In ’18, he hit 26 home runs with an .859 OPS, and in ‘21, he set career highs with 39 homers and 100 RBIs.

Reunited with the Mariners, Haniger will have familiarity on his side as he looks to avoid the injured list in 2024. If he does, his reacquisition could pay big dividends.

Anthony DeSclafani (RHP)

The Mariners have a strong rotation, but entering this offseason, depth was an issue behind the starting five. DeSclafani could provide some if he can stay healthy.

After signing a three-year, $36 million deal with San Francisco prior to the 2021 campaign, the veteran right-hander turned in the finest season of his career, posting a 3.17 ERA across 31 starts. But a slew of injuries -- particularly recurring ankle problems and an elbow strain -- limited him to 23 combined starts in ‘22 and ‘23.

With a full offseason to recover from the elbow injury, the hope is that he’ll recapture his form from ’21.

Luke Raley (1B/OF)

Raley is one of those hidden gem-type players the Rays seem to find so regularly these days. He brings three qualities to a team: power, speed and defensive versatility -- an important trio for today's Major League game. Raley was probably a lot better last season than you realized, a lefty slugger who produced 19 home runs, 14 stolen bases and a 126 OPS+ while playing first base and all three outfield positions.

The 29-year-old's underlying tools back up the numbers he posted. As a power-speed threat, Raley ranked in the 84th percentile of MLB in barrel rate (12.9%) and the 87th percentile in sprint speed (28.8 ft/sec). He was one of 10 players who were in the top 20 percent of the league in both categories, a list that also included players like Mike Trout, Luis Robert Jr., Matt Chapman, Byron Buxton … and Teoscar Hernández.