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Breakfast Links: Mariners rebuild, Ervin Santana and Ubaldo Jimenez test the market

Few people realize that Tom Petty's The Waiting was written about the last days of the baseball offseason. It's cold and there is no baseball and only a few key players remain on the market, but fear not! We have silly voting tourneys to help pass the time.

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Top Stories

Seattle Mariners: Likely to be improved in the Win-Loss column, but what about the standings?

It is an uncomfortable question, but Josh Duggan is right to be asking it. The Mariners have spent $240 million on Robinson Cano and a few million more on upside bets like Corey Hart, John Buck, and Logan Morrison, but they have a long way to go to get past the Rangers, Athletics and Angels. The good news is that this is young team, and there is still more talent on the farm to come. That probably won't be enough to make them competitive, however, so how they spend the last of their 2014 budget is extremely important.

Ervin Santana and Ubaldo Jimenez could benefit from post-Garza absurdities

Is it riskier to bet on a guy with injury issues than to bet on a guy with a track record of wild inconsistency? That is question this offseason has posed to us. Matt Garza battled some injuries last year and his brief journey to the AL West at the end of the year didn't help his earning power, but he has been pretty consistently above-average throughout his career. Ervin Santana has not. Santana's performances have oscillated between dreadful and excellent. Now that Garza has signed a fairly modest deal with Brewers, we get to see how much teams are willing to pay for the boom and bust extremes of a Santana or (to a lesser degree) of a Jimenez.

Other News

San Jose files appeal against A's ruling; briefings set for May

The battle over the Athletics' possible move to San Jose continues. The interesting thing here is the challenge to MLB's long standing anti-trust exemption. San Jose is challenging that in appeals court and every challenge to it has to make MLB owners just a little nervous. I don't expect much to come from this particular shot at the 1922 Supreme Court ruling, but each time it goes under the microscope, there is the opportunity for something strange to happen, because it is a pretty strange ruling.

The most baffling offseason in baseball

That is how Grant Brisbee sees the Reds' offseason. It's a valid point. This is a team that has been a legitimate contender for several years and should be once again in 2014, but it would difficult to find a club that has done less to improve than the Reds.

With Masahiro Tanaka, where does Yankees pitching staff rank?

No one can accuse the Yankees of failing to improve this winter but where does their Tanaka-infused rotation rank? Craig Goldstein does a pretty good job putting them in their place among the top rotations in the game. The thing that holds the Yankees back- in the rotation and in other areas- is a lack of depth.

Body Parts of MLB

Because it is the dead of winter and all the truly interesting free agent story lines have played out, we are now treated to a lot of silly things to bridge the gap between now and the days when baseball begins again in Arizona and Florida. One of those silly things is the Face of MLB voting that is running right now. It is being done tournament style and it has already provided some wacky results (Paul Goldschmidt beats Mike Trout- C'MON!). I'm hoping that some fan base with little else to root for this offseason goes crazy for this thing and we end up with Jose Altuve as the face of MLB.

I don't think the idea should be limited to faces, though. I mean, how important is a face to playing the game of baseball anyway? Remember how good Kevin Youkilis was from 2007-2011? Why not do other body parts as well. Clayton Kershaw is easily the left arm of baseball, but who is the right? Jose Fernandez? Felix Hernandez? Does baseball have washboard-abs or big ol' beer gut? I say put Bryce Harper up against CC Sabathia in the Stomach of MLB tourney so we can settle that once and for all.

I can tell you who is going for the Calves of MLB title-

Three Questions

Contract aside and compensation aside, would you rather have Ervin Santana, Matt Garza or Ubaldo Jimenez for the 2014 season?

Who has the deepest rotation in the game? Not just 1-5- I mean, who can stay competitive the best if those guys go down?

Nominate your own Body Parts of MLB (let's keep it PG-rated here, at least. There are some things I don't want to know)