Mariners acquire McCracken for Colbrunn

Updated: December 15, 2003, 6:56 PM ET
Associated Press

NEW ORLEANS -- The Seattle Mariners reached a preliminary agreement on a three-year contract with first baseman Scott Spiezio and acquired outfielder Quinton McCracken from the Arizona Diamondbacks for infielder Greg Colbrunn on Monday.

ESPN Radio 1000 in Chicago reports that the 31-year-old Spiezio, a key player in Anaheim's 2002 World Series-winning season, has agreed to a three-year deal worth $9 million.

The deal cannot be finalized until Spiezio passes a physical. While there was no announcement by the Mariners, the agreement was confirmed by a baseball source who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Meanwhile, the Rockies and Mariners exchanged minor league pitchers. Colorado traded right-hander Chris Buglovsky to the Mariners for right-hander Allan Simpson.

In addition to reacquiring Colbrunn, Arizona agreed to an $800,000, one-year contract with catcher Brent Mayne.

Monday's trades could be one in a series for Seattle. The Mariners spent much of the winter meetings shopping right-hander Freddy Garcia and infielder Jeff Cirillo.

McCracken, a 33-year-old switch-hitter, batted .227 with no homers and 18 RBI in 203 at-bats last season, appearing in 115 games but making just 39 starts. He has a .280 career average in nine seasons with Colorado (1995-97), Tampa Bay (1998-2000), Minnesota (2001) and Arizona (2002-03).

"I know it's a spacious ballpark," McCracken said. "It's not like I'm a guy who's going to go up there and drive the ball out of the ballpark, anyway. I'm a gap hitter, a line-drive-type hitter.

He has a .280 career average in nine seasons with Colorado (1995-97), Tampa Bay (1998-2000), Minnesota (2001) and Arizona (2002-03).

"I'm looking forward to getting back in the AL and helping the Mariners win a championship," said McCracken, who is good friends with Seattle outfielder Randy Winn.

"I had Q in Arizona in 2002, and I know what kind of player he is," Mariners manager Bob Melvin said. "I think he's a great fit for our club and our clubhouse."

Colbrunn, 34, played for the Diamondbacks from 1999-2002 and was injured for most of last season. He played in 22 games, batting .276 with three homers and seven RBIs in 58 at-bats.

Colbrunn was on the disabled list from June 16-27 because of a strained right oblique muscle and from July 3 to the end of the season because of torn cartilage in his right wrist.

Mayne, 35, spent the past 2½ years with Kansas City and hit .245 last season with six homers and 36 RBIs. He also has played for the New York Mets, Oakland, San Francisco and Colorado, compiling a .268 career average.

Notes
Arizona received OF Michael Goss from Boston to complete the Nov. 28 trade that sent Curt Schilling to the Red Sox and OF Gary "Noochie" Varner from Milwaukee to complete the nine-player trade on Dec. 1 that sent Richie Sexson to Arizona. Goss, 23, hit .245 for Class A Augusta with one homer, 28 RBIs and 29 steals. Varner, 22, was batted .303 with 30 homers and 30 RBIs for Class A Erie and .270 with six homers and 47 RBIs after he was traded from Detroit to Milwaukee on May 27. Also, Seattle acquired Chris Buglovsky from Colorado for Allan Simpson in a swap of right-handed pitchers. Buglovsky, 24, went 10-10 last season with a 4.83 ERA for Double-A Tulsa. Simpson, 26, spent the year with Triple-A Tacoma, finishing 2-5 with one save and a 4.16 ERA in 43 relief appearances.

Information from The Associated Press and SportsTicker was used in this report.


Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press