Can power-hitter Mark Trumbo ignite the Seattle Mariners’ run-starved attack?
We’re about the find out.
The Mariners acquired Trumbo from Arizona in a six-player deal Wednesday shortly after suffering a fifth straight loss — 3-1 to the New York Yankees at Safeco Field.
“Our thoughts were simple,” general manager Jack Zduriencik said. “If you look at where we’re at offensively, we’re not doing what I thought we would do — what most people thought we would do.
“Trumbo is a guy who I think brings an awful lot to the table. Big power hitter who will bat somewhere in the middle of our lineup.”
The Mariners also acquired left-handed pitcher Vidal Nuno in a deal for reliever Dominic Leone, catcher Welington Castillo and two minor leaguers — outfielder Gabby Guerrero and shortstop Jack Reinheimer.
“At this moment,” Zduriencik said, “(Nuno) will go to our bullpen. As Dominic Leone leaves, he’ll come in. It now gives us three left-handers in our bullpen.”
Trumbo, 29, is batting .259 with nine homers and 23 RBIs in 46 games for the Diamondbacks. A right-handed hitter, he will spend time at first base (333 career games), left field (115) and right field (104) and designated hitter (42).
“We’ll have some type of rotating system,” Zduriencik said. “He’ll get his ABs, along with Nelson (Cruz) and the other corner players.
“More than anything else, to bring the bat to this organization is really what we were desiring to do.”
Trumbo averaged 32 homers and 94 RBIs over three seasons from 2011-13 for the Los Angeles Angels before a foot injury limited him to 88 games last season after a trade sent him to Arizona.
Nuno, 27, has spent most of the season as a starter at Triple-A Reno, where he was 3-3 with a 3.38 ERA in eight starts. He made three appearances as a long reliever for the D-Backs, allowing three runs in 141/3 innings.
Trumbo and Nuno are expected to join the club before Thursday’s series opener against Tampa Bay at Safeco Field.
The Mariners are also expected to recall Jesus Sucre from Triple-A Tacoma to replace Castillo as the backup to starting catcher Mike Zunino. Doing so will require a corresponding space-clearing roster move.
“Welington was going to be a backup catcher,” Zduriencik said. “Now, we have an opportunity to bring in an everyday player (in Trumbo) to your lineup.”
Zduriencik characterized the trade as a “typical baseball trade,” which suggests the Mariners are picking up the balance of Trumbo’s $6.9 million salary for this season.
The Mariners will control Trumbo through arbitration for 2016 before he becomes eligible for free agency. Nuno is making $515,000 and is controllable for five more years.
The move comes with the Mariners, viewed this spring as a strong postseason contender, mired in a season-worst skid that dropped them to 24-29.
“There’s been a lot of dialogue going with a lot of clubs,” Zduriencik said. “It’s no secret that clubs are talking a lot right now. In our scenario, we thought it was important to get this thing done as soon as we could.”
Castillo departs just 16 days after a trade brought him from the Chicago Cubs for reliever Yoervis Medina. Castillo 28, was 4 for 25 in six games.
Leone, 23, is 0-4 with a 6.35 ERA in 10 appearances after going 8-2 with a 2.17 ERA last season as a rookie in 57 games.
Guerrero, 21, entered the season ranked No. 7 on The Olympian’s Top 10 list of the organization’s prospects, but he is batting just .215 with two homers and 15 RBIs in 48 games at Double-A Jackson.
The Mariners signed Guerrero, a Dominican native, in January 2011 as a nondrafted free agent.
Reinheimer, 22, is batting .277 at Jackson with 25 runs, 10 doubles, one home run and 16 RBIs. He was a fifth-round pick in the 2013 draft.
“You hate to give up young kids,” Zduriencik said. “But if you look at the skill set a Trumbo has, and figure this guy might add 25 to 30 home runs to your ballclub and do it now — on a club that can use that at this point.
“We hate to give up both players. One is a nice little shortstop, and the other one is a guy who has upside. But … it’s our job to replenish the system.”