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Mariners Claim Quiroz; What’s It Mean?

Posted by Jason A. Churchill on March 31, 2006

The Seattle Mariners picked up catcher Guillermo Quiroz from the Toronto Blue Jays this morning, a move that will send Rene Rivera back to Triple-A Tacoma – where he belongs.

Rivera will likely share catching duties with Corky Miller.

What does this mean for the rest of the roster?

Not a ton, but the M's will have to clear another spot on the 40-man to make room for Quiroz.

The best bet to be removed is LHP Luis Gonzalez. who could be offered back to the Dodgers this weekend if the club doesn't choose the Rule 5 draftee as the last man in the bullpen.

Snelling will go on the 60-day DL to make room for Roberto Petagine and there aren't any other 60-day DL candidates unless something happens between now and Sunday. (knock on wood)

If Gonzalez makes the team the M's could try and pass either RHP Jeff Harris or LHP Jake Woods through waivers.

Another move could be in the offing, however.

Quiroz was among the Blue Jays's top 10 prospects just two years ago and is a little more talented than Rivera offensively. His defense is better than average, suggesting that he will serve as a solid backup.

With the bat, Quiroz, 24, has hit .205 in 88 career ABs, but slugged .518 with 20 home runs in Double-A New Haven in 2003 at age 21. He's significantly more patient than Rivera an gives the M's a better situation on their bench.

He's more of a catch-and-throw type than Rivera but grades at or above average across the board defensively. He's not special by any means, but he's better than Rivera, right now at least.

Solid move, especially since it costs nothing.

In Other News

While I believe that Adam Jones needs more time in Double-A, it appears the Mariners are leaning slightly toward starting the 20-year-old in Triple-A Tacoma. His sub par spring numbers mean nothing. He's impressed a lot of people this spring and a Chicago Cubs official recently raved about his athlecisim and bat speed and made the comment that "he's certainly got big league ability and with a little more polish has a chance to be pretty good."

The minor league rosters do not have to be set until Wednesday.


18 Responses to “Mariners Claim Quiroz; What’s It Mean?”

  1. Willmore said

    Wow, looking at his career stats, it’s like a rollercoast – going from AAA to AA, then to the Majors, then to High-A.

    Anyway, while he doesn’t seem to have shown much of anything apart from the 2003 season, his 1.135 OPS this spring is very enticing. Besides, what’s the worst that could happen – we end up with a .220/.290/.400 Backup catcher with average defense ? Considering the upside, I’m buying this move as a very good one by Billy. It would have been genious had he been able to find a left-handed twin brother of Mr. Quiroz, but one can’t complain.

  2. Does that roller coaster ride of a stat-line look familiar?

    Rivera has done the same over the past two seasons.

  3. Jerry said

    I am also wondering if there might be something going on behind the scenes. Those Craig Wilson rumors seemed pretty legit, but the move made no sense. I thought the same thing about the Juan Pierre rumors in December. But Bavasi was planning that trade as part of an overall plan that included other moves. I have to wonder if that might be what is going on now. Perhaps something is brewing.

    Or perhaps I am just bored because there isn’t much to talk about right now.

  4. slim said

    “If Gonzalez makes the team the M’s could try and pass either RHP Jeff Harris or LHP Jake Woods through waivers.”

    Ah, there’s the disconnect. Jeff Harris, being an non-roster player is not subject to clearing waivers as he’s already on a minor-league contract for 2006. His place on the Opening Day roster is further complicated by the fact that the M’s must make another 40 man subtraction to fit him in. The loser of the Woods/Gonzalez battle will likely clear a spot for Quiroz, but after that you have cut a more painful piece out to squeeze Harris in.

    Cutting Borchard for Morse seems like the best idea right now. Or going with Fruto until Borchard/Petagine gets axed in 10 days, and then swapping Fruto out for Harris.

  5. slim said

    So it appears Woods has won out. Gonzalez goes back to LA per the official press release:

    M's Release

    So, its Fruto v. Harris for the last roster spot, I guess.

  6. Goose said

    If Bavasi was as good with the big moves as he is with the little moves, we’d be in damn good shape.

    Nice pick up.

  7. And there’s the 40-man roster spot for Quiroz with the Gonzalez move.

  8. I’m getting e-mails and phone calls asking me why the M’s made this move.

    I’ll answer here.

    Because Quiroz is better than Rivera and it allows Rivera to play frequently as he develops down in AAA.

    It’s really that simple.

    Quiroz isn’t light years better than Rivera, but he’s much more prepared to give the M’s what they need in a backup catcher.

    Plus, he’s only 24 and will continue to get better himself.

  9. Rivera will likely share catching duties with Corky Miller.

    I thought Corky was just sent to Houston for cash. Can we send Willie Boom Boom Dynamite down to Tacoma to learn how to be the emergency catcher down there? Darn!

  10. Cody Ransom was traded to Houston for cash.

    Miller, at press time, is still in M’s minor league camp, though that could change now, too.

    The M’s have Tom Gregorio, Andy Dominique and Luis Oliveros who could back up Rivera in AAA.

  11. J said

    The Everett Herald says we released Dominique a few days ago


  12. Which would be why all Hunter talks about is Gregorio.

  13. Quote:

    Cutting Borchard for Morse seems like the best idea right now. Or going with Fruto until Borchard/Petagine gets axed in 10 days, and then swapping Fruto out for Harris.

    Why would Morse for Borchard make sense? Borchard can help this club. Morse can't. They don't need anymore infielders, Morse is a terrible outfielder and not nearly as productive at the plate as Borchard.

    When Lawton comes back, they will have to make a decision. Petagine to AAA and keep Borchard or give Borchard away?

    Another no-brainer, unless another 40-man spot opens up via trade.

    The club has offering up Choo in just every trade conversation since February.

  14. Andren said

    Re: Adam Jones, have you watched him play much? Is he really ready for AAA?

    I finally got a chance to see him play in Peoria earlier this month and felt like he’s got a loooong way to go. He looked completely overmatched at the plate and struck out several times (on a steady diet of fastballs) looking pretty bad in the process.

    Who knows, maybe he ate the shrimp cocktail the night before or had a bad night of sleep?! but I thought he looked like he could use some seasoning.

  15. Willmore said

    By the way, how is Quiroz pronounced:

    1. Keeros
    2. Kooeeros
    3. Kooeros
    4. Keros

    5. Keeroth
    6. Kooeeroth
    7. Keroth
    8. Kooeroth

    9. Kwiroth
    10. some other form I can’t imagine right now.

    Just want to know for future reference, so that I can make fun of every announcer that says it wrong.

  16. JH said

    Quiroz = Key-Rose

  17. slim said

    Petagine and Borchard are both out of options. They are both subject to waivers. If he clears waivers, Petagine can actually outright refuse an assignment to Tacoma, since he has been DFA’d before. If Borchard clears, he cannot refuse an assignment to AAA since this is his first time being DFA’d.

    The only reason Morse makes sense over Borchard is if you want to keep Harris and you want to cut the weakest member of the 40 man to make room. Right now, a good argument can be made that Borchard is that guy. As far as Morse not being a good OF… so what? It’s 10 days. Morse can play LF and RF in an emergency, and Bloomquist can cover CF for a couple games.

    But I suspect – though I can’t find confirmation – that Lawton’s suspension removes him from the 40 man as well. That would clear a spot for Harris.

  18. Borchard will not clear waivers, however.

    And no, I don’t think Jones is ready for AAA, not with the bat nor with the glove.

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