View Full Version : Mariners part with two-time All-Star Lawton

05-22-2006, 12:39 AM
Saturday, May 20, 2006
Mariners part with two-time All-Star Lawton

Associated Press

SEATTLE -- The Seattle Mariners granted Matt Lawton his wish by designating him for assignment, ending a brief relationship between the recently suspended outfielder and one of the few teams willing to sign him last winter.

Matt Lawton
Right Field
Seattle Mariners

11 0 1 5 .310 .259

General manager Bill Bavasi said Lawton was pleased with Saturday's move. The team now has 10 days to trade or release the two-time All-Star outfielder, who had volunteered to be released weeks ago while rarely playing for a last-place team.

Utility player Mike Morse was recalled from Triple-A Tacoma to take Lawton's roster spot.

Lawton was suspended for the first 10 days of the season after testing positive last fall for a steroid while he was struggling with the New York Yankees. Upon his return, Lawton appeared in only 11 games, going 7-for-27 (.259) with one RBI while sitting behind corner outfielders Ichiro Suzuki and Raul Ibanez.

The Mariners were so uncomfortable with Lawton in center field they recently started utility player Willie Bloomquist there to replace the slumping Jeremy Reed.

Seattle signed Lawton to a one-year, $400,000 deal with a limited no-trade clause last fall. Idling cost him up to a potential $1.25 million in performance bonuses based on plate appearances. Last season, he earned $7.5 million to finish a $27 million, four-year contract.

"In the offseason, he was looking for a chance to play and he took just above the minimum to play," Bavasi said. "He wasn't doing this for money; he was doing this for another chance to get his career back on track after what happened last year in New York."

The Mariners could send Lawton to the minor leagues after 10 days, but only with the 34-year-old's permission -- which he almost certainly would not grant.

"Matt's a good player, a good major league player. It's just where we're at right now," said manager Mike Hargrove, who preferred another right-handed hitter on the bench instead of the left-handed Lawton.

"We were just trying to make it work, and it became real obvious it wasn't going to."

Lawton is a career .267 hitter with 138 home runs. He was an All-Star in 2000 with Minnesota and 2004 with Cleveland. He made his major league debut with the Twins in 1995 and remained with them until 2001, when he was traded to the New York Mets. He also played two seasons in Cleveland and last season for Pittsburgh, the Chicago Cubs and Yankees.

Morse, 24, gives the Mariners the additional backup infielder they needed.

They were forced to put Adrian Beltre and his sore left hamstring back in the lineup Friday because Bloomquist had a sore left hand. Bloomquist was hit by a pitch in a game on Thursday at Oakland.

Morse played in 72 games for Seattle last season, his first in the major leagues. He batted .278 with three home runs.

The Mariners also activated reliever Julio Mateo (shoulder tendinitis) from the 15-day disabled list and optioned right-hander Emiliano Fruto back to Tacoma.

05-22-2006, 12:42 AM
I wonder if the extra Roster spot on the 40 man Roster could be for Matt Lawton? Do you think we are considering a Williams for Lawton type move and then dfaing a pitcher or Mccrakin? Do you think he would be a upgrade?

05-22-2006, 01:02 AM
didn't the reds sign that one centerfielder? sanchez maybe? who was formerly a tiger and had tested positive for steroids. if so, can someone list some stats through the season for him

05-22-2006, 08:28 AM
No to Lawton. No No No.

05-22-2006, 08:30 AM
I could deal with Lawton as long as he is ONLY used in a PH/once in a while backup role. He is better than Q.

05-22-2006, 08:42 AM
True, but Q keeps his mouth shut and doesn't give attitude.

05-22-2006, 08:44 AM
Alex Sanchez CF Louisville Bats:

.159 AVG(10-63) 2 RBI 2 R 11K's 0BB

If it were me.. I'd bring up Chris Denorfia:

.330 (38-115) 3HRs 14 RBI 14 R 14K's 11BB 4SB

05-22-2006, 10:07 AM
Reds have a far better option than Lawton playing in AAA.

05-22-2006, 10:16 AM
Reds have a far better option than Lawton playing in AAA.
Agreed...but for whatever reason, he is stil in AAA.

05-22-2006, 10:27 AM
I'll pass on Lawton. Some AL team may make him a DH.

Dude's never been right since he left Minnesota. There must be some type of TrashBag Curse.

05-22-2006, 10:30 AM
No to Lawton. No No No.

Agreed...I am confident there is no way Lawton is on our radar.

Personally, I do not believe, at 34, he is any possibility of a long-term solution, and the Reds currently do not need a placeholder in the OF...particularly with young players with upside (Denorfia and C. Ross) in the wings.

05-22-2006, 10:34 AM
I'll pass on Lawton. Some AL team may make him a DH.

Dude's never been right since he left Minnesota. There must be some type of TrashBag Curse.
Or testing policy.