Seattle Mariners Reliever Paul Sewald Throws Shade at New York Yankees

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With an AL best 40-23 record since June 1, the Seattle Mariners are in position to make their first postseason in 20 years.

The front office signaled their commitment to reaching the playoffs by acquiring pitcher Luis Castillo from the Cincinnati Reds, pursuing the exact opposite course to the also contending Baltimore Orioles.

While the Mariners have been mediocre since the All-Star break, going 10-10, the team just completed a big series win in Seattle over the New York Yankees. They were helped by one of the worst baserunning performances in MLB history:

Perhaps feeling a bit emboldened by his team’s important win, Mariners closer Paul Sewald made some pointed remarks at the Yankees expense.

After Wednesday’s 4-3 win, he noted that the Yankees rely on superstars, while the Mariners have used team-wide contributions to get where they are.

“We don’t have Aaron Judge on our team,” Sewald said, according to Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times. “We don’t have a $35-million pitcher. But we have 26 guys that are all really good and all have a key part of this team. And when they do their job, we end up winning more games than we’re losing, and that’s the key.”

Sewald has a point, to an extent.

The Yankees historically run of huge payrolls; this year it’s up to $252 million, which ranks third in the league.

The Mariners, by contrast, rank 22nd, with $113 million in salaries.

That said, smaller market teams like the San Diego Padres are also spending huge sums of money to try and compete. The St. Louis Cardinals deal with a much smaller metro area than the Mariners do, yet rank in the top 12 for spending at over $162 million.

Team owners could almost certainly, in theory, spend more money to make the team better. They just choose not to.

The real test of ownership commitment will come when some of the Mariners younger stars like Ty France and Julio Rodriguez head toward free agency and higher salaries.

Sewald is no doubt confident that his team can compete with the Yankees despite the massive payroll and star power gap.

But if you can have players like Aaron Judge and Gerrit Cole on your team, why would you not?

Written by Ian Miller

Ian Miller is a former award watching high school actor, author, and long suffering Dodgers fan. He spends most of his time golfing, traveling, reading about World War I history, and trying to get the remote back from his dog. Follow him on Twitter @ianmSC

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