MLB trade grades: Everything to know about Mariners-Blue Jays Teoscar Hernandez deal

Seattle Mariners, Toronto Blue Jays

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Never bet against a Jerry Dipoto offseason trade. The Seattle Mariners have added former Blue Jays All-Star outfielder Teoscar Hernandez to their lineup.

The Blue Jays surprised baseball on Wednesday morning by dealing Teoscar Hernandez out west to the Seattle Mariners.

While dealing an All-Star under team control for another year may seem surprising to most, it’s part of the business of baseball.

Toronto has their reasons — namely solidifying their bullpen with one of the better late-inning right-handed pitchers in the American League and a prospect with high-end starter potential to boot.

Teoscar Hernandez trade details:

The trade details are as follows. In Hernandez, Seattle received the marquee name in this trade and acquired one of the more powerful outfield hitters in baseball to protect Julio Rodriguez in an already-intriguing lineup.

Blue Jays Get

RHP, Erik Swanson

LHP, Adam Macko

Mariners Get

OF, Teoscar Hernandez

  • What does Toronto gain? Hernandez is a free agent after this season. Were he to leave after receiving a qualifying offer in 2023, the Jays would get some draft capital — though it wouldn’t amount to what they received in this trade alone. The 29-year-old Swanson had a sub-2 ERA and 70 strikeouts in over 50 innings pitched for the M’s. Macko is a left-handed pitching prospects who, per some scouts, projects to a top-of-the-rotation starter.
  • What does Seattle gain? Hernandez slashed .267/.316/.491 last season with 25 home runs and 77 RBIs. He will start in right field next to the phenom Rodriguez. Hernandez will make over $12 million in arbitration, most likely. Seattle’s recent long-term contract trends suggest they could sign him before it comes to that, however.

Who won the Teoscar Hernandez trades, Mariners or Blue Jays?

The so-called winner of this trade won’t be determined for some time, but the Mariners receive the most immediate impact. The AL West is an arms race between Seattle, and the rival Houston Astros, who just won the World Series. DiPoto must keep pace.

If Seattle fails to sign Hernandez long-term, they will still receive what amounts to a third-round draft pick as long as they extend him a qualifying offer next offseason. Either way, the rental pays dividends.

For Toronto, receiving something of value for Hernandez to help them win now makes sense. Swanson is a legitimate back-end bullpen weapon, while Macko could turn into a top-end starter in the not-so-distant future.

Who will replace Teoscar Hernandez in Blue Jays outfield?

Per Jon Morosi, the Blue Jays did not make this trade without a backup plan. In dealing Hernandez, you can expect Toronto to be in on several free agent outfielders this offseason. That will reportedly include Brandon Nimmo, formerly of the New York Mets, whose market is suddenly heating up.

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