It’s easy for Seattle baseball fans to watch the postseason and groan over all the ex-Mariners who’ve made an impact on playoff teams this year.
Former GM Pat Gillick put together a Phillies team that has the Dodgers in a tough spot in the NLCS. Playing key roles for the Phillies are Jamie Moyer and Greg Dobbs.
Every time Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek shows why he’s that team’s captain, or Derek Lowe pitches well for the Dodgers, it rekindles the incredible tale of the day former M’s GM Woody Woodward traded those two to Boston in 1997. Woodward, on the phone completing a deal that would bring reliever Heathcliff Slocumb to the M’s, was told by the Sox, “We want Varitek or Lowe.” Woodward thought he heard “We want Varitek AND Lowe,” and he said OK. We know where Varitek and Lowe are right now; no idea on Slocumb.
We saw Ken Griffey Jr. return to the postseason with the White Sox (along with former M’s pitcher Matt Thornton) and Mike Cameron back in the playoffs with the Brewers.
In all, 10 former Mariners reached the postseason this year. That may seem like 10 too many for M’s fans who cringe every time one of their guys does something well with another team.
But it’s nothing compared with other teams. Besides being the defending World Series champions, the Red Sox are kings of sending good talent elsewhere, with 21 former players in the postseason this year.
A scan of the rosters of the eight playoff teams shows the M’s are in the lower end of the pack. Here are the numbers:
Team Ex-players in postseason with other teams
Red Sox 21
Blue Jays 15
White Sox 10
What to make of this? Hard to say.
You could look at the Red Sox, Indians and others at the top of the list and conclude that it shows their strength in scouting and player development. Then again, that argument isn’t so strong with the Angels, Phillies and Brewers at the bottom of the list.
It probablly illustrates the mobile nature of baseball these days more than anything. And the fact that M’s fans aren’t alone when they gripe about all their ex-players in the playoffs.