As the Mariners look to add right-handed power before the trade deadline, Marlon Byrd is a name to watch. As Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reported this morning, the M's have been scouting Byrd, who is thought to be available in trade talks.
There appears to be an obstacle, however, as Byrd revealed to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com that the Mariners are one of four teams that he can block trades to, along with the Royals, Rays, and Blue Jays.
Byrd told Salisbury that he wants to stay in Philadelphia and retire as a Phillie, but that he would consider waiving his no-trade clause if the Phillies asked him to do so in a potential trade with Seattle.
"I don’t want to get traded," Byrd told Salisbury Thursday in Milwaukee. "I signed a two-year deal here for a reason. The thought process was to retire as a Phillie. At the same time, this is a business and I know how it works. If trading me makes the organization better, I have to go with it."
"There would have to be a conversation with me, my agent and Ruben (Amaro Jr., the Phillies’ GM) if it gets to that point," Byrd said.
Byrd later told Salisbury that the Jays and Rays were on his no-trade list because he didn't want to play on artificial turf as an aging player, but that the Royals and Mariners were included as "things that were just put on at the time being."
Byrd, who turns 37 in August, is hitting .261 with 18 HR and 52 RBI in 91 games with the Phillies this season after signing a two-year, $16M contract last winter that includes a vesting option for 2016. He would appeal to any team looking for right-handed power in the outfield, and could intrigue the Royals or Red Sox in addition to the Mariners.