The NY Yankees could be looking to trade David Phelps ahead of Opening Day and the Seattle Mariners are a team that is interested and second baseman Nick Franklin or shortstop Brad Miller could be involved in a deal if it goes down during spring training, as the M's could use another arm after the injuries to Taijuan Walker and Hisashi Iwakuma.
The Mariners are coming into the season with some high expectations after signing Robinson Cano and while they love Franklin as a prospect, he really doesn't have a position now that Brad Miller is at shortstop. Franklin was originally a shortstop but moved last season and now that Cano is signed he is a man without a position and as rumors come out that the NY Mets and Tampa Bay Rays have called on Franklin, this report about the interest in Phelps from the Mariners has popped up. According to the New York Post, when Phelps pitched in spring training last week, it was not only Yankees scouts that were looking at him, but Mariners scouts as well.
The report says that the Mariners saw Phelps pitch 2 2/3 innings and he gave up five hits and while he got knocked around that day, the team is more interested in what he can do in the regular season. The Mariners and Yankees are frequent trade partners it seems and the M's could use a boost in the rotation after Walker was shut down for a week and Iwakuma injured his hand, as both may not be ready for the start of the season.
Robinson Cano has already said to reporters that the Mariners should sign Ervin Santana and Kendrys Morales, but right now there is no movement on either front. Cano was signed for $240 million and many felt the Mariners would go out and add another star player, but nothing materialized and now the start of the season is a few weeks away. Last year Phelps got some time as a reliever and before that as a starter and he had a near 5.00 ERA in 86 innings and the Mariners likely see him as a back of the rotation starter.
A trade for Phelps involving Franklin would favor the Yankees so they may have to give up more in that deal and this all comes as Phelps is looking to win a spot himself in the Yanks rotation this season behind CC Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka and Hiroki Kuroda and Ivan Nova, possibly ahead of Michael Pineda. Phelps is 27 years old and no longer a prospect, while Franklin has his entire career ahead of him and still could be a star.
The Mets and Rays showed interest in the slick gloving fielder, as he hit 12 home runs last season with 45 RBIs while putting up a .225 batting average in his first stint in the big leagues. Phelps was 6-5 last season and the Mariners would be looking to add another arm to the rotation to help out Felix Hernandez and the report from CBS Sports says that the Phelps game also had scouts from the Brewers and the White Sox. The Yankees could afford to move Phelps if the price is right, as they also have Vidal Nuno and Adam Warren as rotation options.