Trading James Paxton to the Yankees set off what seems to be a domino effect involving a rebuild for Seattle. Paxton, formerly the Mariners' ace with high-velocity stuff, was acquired by New York for top prospect Justus Sheffield and two other prospects. While general manager Jerry DiPoto has said that he hopes to contend by 2020-2021, that would mean doing only a partial rebuild. However, the Mariners can do that and go through the whole deal the way the Yankees did: trading for prospects.
Yes, that would mean players like Mitch Haniger and Edwin Diaz would be gone. However, if the Mariners are to truly contend, they cannot half-ass the effort. This is not the Howard Lincoln/Chuck Armstrong regime anymore, where the Mariners can only hope to 'contend'. Plus, the Mariners would have the contracts of Felix Hernandez and Kyle Seager off the books by 2021. Here are a few trades that can help the Mariners reach that point:
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