The Mariners have traded third baseman/first baseman Alex Liddi and their international signing slot No. 3 for the Orioles' international signing slot No. 2.
Liddi is reportedly headed for the Orioles' Triple A affiliate in Norfolk.
Liddi, 24, has appeared in 8 games with the Mariners this season (.059/1x17), spending most of the season with AAA Tacoma. With the Rainiers he is batting .263 (63x240) with 11 home runs and 43 RBI. Liddi was originally signed by the Mariners as an international free agent on Sept. 9, 2005. The native of Sanremo, Italy is the first Italian-born and developed player to appear in a Major League game.
This basically gives the Mariners more money to spend on the international free agent market.
Liddi was designated for assignment when the Mariners called up Brad Miller. The team had 10 days to either release, trade or outright Liddi. With the Orioles likely to claim him off of waivers, the Mariners picked up some more money on the international market instead.
This is the first year of the new international slotting system. It's a product of the new collective bargaining agreement between MLB and the players' union reached two years ago.
Ben Badler of Baseball America did a great job explaining it in this piece.
And from Mr. Badler ...
The Orioles seem to like Mariners' cast offs. They recently traded for outfielder Eric Thames after he was designated for assignment.