Trades involving big names have been few and far between for the KC Royals and Seattle Mariners.
The Mariners began play in 1977 with an Opening Day roster that included outfielder Ruppert Jones, who they selected from the Royals in the 1976 expansion draft.
But the first deal between the two clubs didn’t come until January 1978 when the M’s purchased right-handed starter Roy Branch from Kansas City. Branch had toiled seven years in KC’s minor league system and posted a 9-13 record and 2.75 ERA at Omaha in 1977. Branch made two starts for the Mariners in 1979 and was out of baseball after 1980.
The two teams’ transaction activity is littered with player purchases such as last season’s when the Royals purchased reliever Domingo Tapia from the Mariners. There are also deals that didn’t amount to much for either side, including the early 2017 exchange of Kansas City outfielder Jarrod Dyson for pitcher Nate Karns.
Three deals between the KC Royals and Seattle involved some big names.
For every Vince Coleman, Ross Jones and Rusty Meacham involved in these trades, there are less familiar names like Steve Hamrick, Ken Spratke and Terry Bell. The biggest names exchanged by the two teams are primarily concentrated within three trades.
Those three deals include a pitcher traded a year after throwing a no-hitter, a player to be named later who became one of the Royals’ all-time leading pitchers, and an outfielder who became one of the leading power hitters in club history.
Let’s look at the most impactful trades between Kansas City and Seattle.