Five highly productive members of the 2014 bullpen are no longer in Seattle. Brandon Maurer was traded in the offseason for Seth Smith. Yoervis Medina was traded in May for Welington Castillo. Dominic Leone was traded with Castillo and two minor leaguers for Mark Trumbo. Danny Farquhar has been languishing in Tacoma due to ineffectiveness for much of the season, and he hasn’t been thriving in AAA. Now, Tom Wilhelmsen is the latest to get the boot, being sent down to join Farquhar in the Minor League Ballclub of the Damned.
Wilhelmsen has been mostly awful this year, but he’s gotten away with it for longer than he probably should’ve thanks to the fact that the majority of the runs he’s given up have been inherited runners that counted against the pitchers he relieved. Like most of our other underperforming bullpen pitchers, it’s all about command. He doesn’t have it. Seemingly no one in this year’s bullpen has it. And as such, the Mariners have struggled.
David Rollins gets his shot, after missing half the season due to a suspension for performance-enhancing drugs. He looked amazeballs in Spring Training, so we’ll see if there’s another diamond in the rough. If he succeeds, then that’s swell, because he’s under team control for a good long while. If he fails, then we may have to offer him back to his former team, as he’s a Rule 5 draft pick. The last thing we need to be doing is helping the Astros stay great, so let’s just hope he pitches well for us.
The Mariners also sent down Vidal Nuno, presumably to give him more of a chance to pitch (and maybe stretch him out to be a starter). It’d be nice to have a spot starter down there ready to go should disaster strike. In his place, we called up Mayckol Guaipe, a right hander who you may recall made his first-ever Major League appearance on June 1st, pitching 2.1 shutout innings in a blowout loss to the Yankees. That was one of Felix’s rare duds, and Guaipe really saved our ‘pen that day. He would be sent back down immediately after, so it’s nice to see him get another crack at the bigs, given that this is his 9th year in our organization.
Other roster moves were made, but I’m splitting these posts up in the name of brevity. And because I’ve got other shit I need to do.