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Mariners and Miguel Olivo agree to two-year, $7 million deal

Dec 9, 2010, 2:30 PM EDT

Miguel Olivo

Seattle has signed catcher Miguel Olivo to a two-year, $7 million contract with a team option for 2013, according to Jon Paul Morosi of

Last month the Blue Jays acquired Olivo from the Rockies for a player to be named later, declined his $2.6 million option for 2011, and then offered him arbitration, which means Toronto will receive a compensatory draft pick for losing a Type B free agent who never actually played for them.

Pretty nifty move from general manager Alex Anthopoulos, who saw the value in holding Olivo’s rights even when the Rockies didn’t. Seattle handing $7 million to Olivo is also intriguing, because Jack Zduriencik is viewed as a stat-friendly general manager who places a premium on getting on base and Olivo has consistently posted one of the worst on-base percentages in baseball.

Olivo got on base at a .315 clip this year, which is both significantly below the MLB average and by far the best mark of his career. In fact, it’s only time his OBP has cracked .300. He brings plenty of power to the table, smacking 14 homers in 427 at-bats this year and 20 homers per 550 at-bats for his career, and Olivo also does a good job controlling the running game, but it’s still an odd fit.

  1. iranuke - Dec 9, 2010 at 2:42 PM

    The entire Mariner team posted a pretty awful on base percentage last year, so what difference if their catcher can’t get on base?

    • IdahoMariner - Dec 9, 2010 at 2:47 PM

      um, because the team as a whole underperformed, but now we are acquiring someone who, if he overperforms, will still suck?
      some days it’s just hard to be a fan.

      • easports82 - Dec 9, 2010 at 3:01 PM

        Completely agree. did a little piece on why Olivo still wouldn’t translate as a good hitter at Safeco. Well, he’s not a good hitter outside Colorado, but I digress. Jack Z better have some pretty good numbers hiding somewhere to justify this.

  2. proudlycanadian - Dec 9, 2010 at 8:31 PM

    Meanwhile the Jays are happy.

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