One piece that the Mariners could either trade alone or include in a deal if they decide to buy is outfielder Dustin Ackley. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that a lot of teams are asking Seattle about Ackley. Heyman notes that, "Others see potential there." The former number 11 prospect pre-2010 (via Baseball America) could still be a star in the future.
Ackley still has not lived up to expectations with the Mariners, posting only one "above-average" season (via OPS+) in 2011, when he hit a clip of .348. If the Mariners are serious about making a run at the Tampa Bay Rays' David Price, or even Ben Zobrist, Ackley could be one of the pieces involved in the deal. The Mariners are also looking at the Philadelphia Phillies' Marlon Byrd. Ackley could head there if that deal went as well. Or, the Mariners could sell Ackley for an above-average prospect or two. The possibilities to move Ackley are endless.
On the season, Ackley is hitting a triple-slash line of .232/.286/.344 with four homers and 29 RBI in 310 plate appearances, mostly playing the outfield. His 80 OPS+ is the second-lowest of his career. The 26-year-old was expected to be a big on-base guy when he got into the major leagues, but he only has a .310 OBP. He may just need a change of scenery to be able to produce at a high level.
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