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News Roundup: Mariners Sign Carlos Silva

-P- The M's have signed Carlos Silva to a four-year, $48 million contract, which seems like quite a risk to me. Silva posted a career high in strikeouts last year, with 89. While strikeouts aren't everything, and while Silva has good control and generally keeps the ball on the ground, he's not such a groundball machine that he's a good bet to continue to post good ERAs with strikeout rates that low. Silva allowed 38 homers in 180 innings with the Twins in 2006, so it's not as if his groundball tendencies are a sure bet to save him. More to the point, though, the Mariners don't seem to get that acquiring mid-tier veterans (Silva, Scott Spiezio, Rich Aurilia, Carl Everett, Ben Broussard, Eduardo Perez, Horacio Ramirez, and so on) at non-bargain prices generally isn't the way to build a team. (In their defense, a few of those guys, like Raul Ibanez, Jarrod Washburn and Miguel Batista, have basically worked out so far, and the Mariners' attempts at top-tier free agent signings in Adrian Beltre, Richie Sexson haven't been so hot, either.) What is this signing supposed to accomplish? I wasn't a big fans of the Angels' signing of Torii Hunter, but to get Silva, the M's just dropped more than half the amount the Angels paid Hunter. If the Angels are already better than the Mariners and the Angels sign Hunter while the Mariners sign Silva, how are the Mariners supposed to keep up with the Angels?

-P- The Phillies have signed Geoff Jenkins to a two-year, $13 million deal, which probably isn't a terrible idea. Jenkins isn't as bad or as fragile as I initially thought he was, and he's spent his career bouncing back and forth between excellent 130 OPS+ seasons and mediocre 100 OPS+ ones. If the Phillies can get one of those 130 OPS+ seasons in the next two, this contract will be a tremendous bargain. If not, he'll probably be at least decent.

-P- Dontrelle Willis signed a three-year, $29 million extension with the Tigers that buys out his first year of free agency. Willis made $6.45 million in arbitration last year. Given the mediocre season he had in 2007, he probably wouldn't have received a huge raise, but I'd still guess he'd have made about $16 million in the next two years through arbitration, or maybe $18 million if he pitched well this year. So the value of his extension seems reasonable.