By Bob Dutton The News Tribune
PEORIA, Ariz. — There’s a “window” remaining, according to general manager Jack Zduriencik, for the Seattle Mariners to make another major offseason roster addition even as they prepare for their first official spring workout.
“There are still pretty of good players out there,” he said Tuesday prior to departing for the Dominican Republic to take part in the opening ceremonies for the organization’s new academy in Boca Chica. “But every club has restrictions for where you’re are at this point in the year. It isn’t often easy for a club to say, ‘Give me $10 million more or $15 million more.’ It just doesn’t always work like that.”
Even so …
“There’s probably a window to do something,” Zduriencik said. “We’ve had dialogue with so many of the free agents out there since the general managers’ meetings in November. … We still have that ongoing. We’ve still having conversations.”
While Zduriencik, club president Kevin Mather and other club officials spend Thursday in Boca Chica, the Mariners will hold their first official workout for pitchers and catchers here at their year-round complex. Pitchers and catchers reported to camp today. The first full-squad workout is Feb. 18.
The Mariners remain strongly linked by industry sources to free-agent outfielder Nelson Cruz, a Dominican native and friend to second baseman Robinson Cano, the Mariners’ prize offseason signing.
Zduriencik laughed at a question regarding the possibility Cano might make a recruiting visit during his upcoming trip.
“You never know,” he said. “I know Robinson is going to be there (for the opening of the new academy). He’s going to be part of the festivities.”
Zduriencik pointed to signing Cano as one of several offseason moves designed to upgrade a 71-91 club, but he stopped short of saying he was satisfied with the roster as it now stands. “I don’t think anybody anywhere ever says, ‘Boy, am I really satisfied,’” he said. “You’d always like to do more. Everyone would like to do more, but you also have to be realistic on how far you can go.
“Are we going to go any further? Are we going to do other things? We’ll certainly have conversations going.”