There has been a sense that the Mariners are serious contenders in the Masahiro Tanaka sweepstakes, but Ken Rosenthal reported this morning that the Seattle front office is still waiting for the green light from ownership  in order to pursue another significant addition. That matters around here because both the Yankees and Mariners are clearly focused on pitching. Each team already has added offense — the Mariners by signing Robinson Cano, the Yankees by trying to replace him — which leaves the pitching market as their best chance to further upgrade.
Even if it’s not Tanaka — if Tanaka were to sign with the Dodgers, for example — the Mariners and Yankees could still compete for secondary options like Matt Garza or Ervin Santana. Whoever it is, these two teams are looking for pitching, and that makes them potential competition on the free agent market. If the Mariners aren’t committed to spending, that could make things a little easier for the Yankees.
That’s assuming, of course, the Yankees are willing to spend.