Seattle is quickly improving their team - the latest evidence is with the acquisition of closer Francisco Rodriguez. The Mariners sent Shea Hillenbrand (.266 12 HR's 70 RBI's in 2004) and a #4 round draft pick to Pittsburgh in exchange for the right-handed reliever. Rodriguez, who was the setup man for Brad Lidge last season, finished 9-1 with a 2.88 ERA last season for the Buccos.
Seattle also had four draft picks in the top thirty this season and selected Prince Fielder (#1), Ryan Zimmerman (#6), Kelly Johnson (#21) and Kelvim Escobar (#26). With all this new talent, the Mariners are definitely on the upswing.