Chicago Cubs must differentiate themselves in Shohei Ohtani talks
By Jake Misener
Can Ohtani handle living in Ichiro’s shadow?
2015 – 2017 Record: 240-246 (.493 winning percentage)
A core built around Robinson Cano, Kyle Seager and Nelson Cruz is an enviable one. Seattle scored the seventh-most runs in the American League last year while also ranking seventh in terms of OPS.
Pitching-wise, James Paxton headlines the rotation. Injuries derailed the staff – including Felix Hernandez – last season. Edwin Diaz, the team’s young closer, emerged as one of the best in the league last season, closing out 34 games in his age-23 campaign.
Kyle Lewis headlines this team’s prospect class. The outfielder is still not ready to impact the big-league team, but remains a significant part of the Mariners’ future. He’s also the team’s lone Top 100 representative. But the club has a number of young pitchers – so there’s still a lot to work with.
The Asian-Pacific influence in the Northwest, especially Seattle, is very strong. The organization has a storied history working with international talent and adding his name to that long list of quality Pacific players might be an offer too good for Ohtani to refuse.