James Paxton woke up on Tuesday as a New York Yankee instead of a Seattle Mariner. He posted a sentimental thank you to the Mariners and to his Seattle fans in an Instagram post.
James Paxton woke up on Tuesday morning no longer a part of the MLB organization that drafted him in the fourth round of the 2010 MLB draft.
As the Mariners continue their offseason rebuild, Jerry Dipoto traded Paxton to the Yankees on Monday in exchange for a package of three prospects.
Paxton was a fan favorite during his time in Seattle. The Canadian’s inspiring performances on the mound even inspired fans to create a cheering section dedicated to him: “Maple Grove”.
So it’s no surprise that Paxton – nicknamed “Big Maple” by his fan base” took to social media Tuesday morning to thank Mariners fans for their support.
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“Thank you so much to the Seattle Mariners for an amazing 8 years,” Paxton wrote in an Instagram post. “It has been a great ride for me and many things have happened here that I will never forget. From my MLB debut, to an eagle on my shoulder, and even a no hitter. The teammates that I’ve had over my years in Seattle have been nothing but the best and I will cherish the friendships that have been created.
“To my many coaches that have helped mold me into the pitcher that I am today, I can’t thank you enough, and you know who you are. To the fans, I am extremely lucky to have had such great support as a Mariner from day 1. I was welcomed right away and the support never ended. Special thanks to the Maple Grove for your enthusiastic cheering that made my games so much fun. I will miss you all.”
Paxton then followed his “Goodbye Seattle!” post with one thanking the Yankees for selecting him.
“I am honored to have been chosen by the Yankees to help aid them in their quest for World Series ring #28,” Paxton wrote. “The Yankees organization has such a great history, tradition, and commitment to winning. I am extremely excited to put on the pinstripes and become a part of that. Let’s go win a championship @Yankees.”
That last sentence is something he couldn’t have said in Seattle. But perhaps the Mariners have now better positioned themselves for a playoff run in 2020 and beyond.