May 13, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Tampa Bay Rays designated hitter David DeJesus (7) hits a solo home run against the Seattle Mariners during the ninth inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
3. Seattle Mariners
How much patience to the Mariners have with Dustin Ackley? Ackley delivered his best OPS (and OPS+) since 2011 last season, but even then, he failed to post even league-average offense. Ackley clearly has more trade value than DeJesus, but the Mariners might be interested in a deal if the Rays dangle one of their surplus starting pitchers like Enny Romero or Mike Montgomery.
The Mariners have plenty of pitching depth of their own, so maybe they would immediately flip the pitcher they acquire to a third team, but they might at least consider such a package. DeJesus would give them an offensive upgrade in left field against right-handed pitching–and by the way, Ackley doesn’t really hit lefties either.
From the Rays’ perspective, meanwhile, Ackley comes with versatility as he was a very good defensive second baseman before the Mariners moved him to the outfield in an attempt to get his bat on track. The Rays are trying to figure their middle infield out, and they would also have an opening in the outfield until Souza is ready if they do trade DeJesus. With those things in mind, Ackley could be a project worth taking on.