Things are looking good for James Paxton as he continues to work his way back from a lat strain that has sidelined him for the majority of this season.
Paxton made his first rehab start for the Everett AquaSox last night as they lost 4-2 to Salem-Keizer. Paxton did pretty much what we expected him to do, and that was show us he is a little rusty after not starting a game since the beginning of April.
Paxton pitched 2 and 2/3 innings giving up 2 runs on 2 hits, with a walk and 2 strikeouts.
Paxton left the game in the third down 1-0 with a man on second, but thanks to two consecutive wild pitches by Noel De La Cruz, the runner was able to score crediting that run to Paxton.
The tall lefty has been slowly working his way back from that lat injury and if all goes well in this rehab stint, he could be ready in early August for the Seattle Mariners.
He is the number 3 prospect in the Mariners system as ranked by MLB.com. The southpaw was called up by the Mariners last September and looked to be a strong candidate for the number 3 spot this year.
In 2013, Paxton went 3-0 with a 1.50 ERA and started 2014 off 2-0 before the injury.
The 25 year old, 6’2″-220 pound Canadian was selected in the 4th round of the 2010 amateur draft after attending college at the University of Kentucky.
Paxton was a strikeout machine for the Kentucky in 2009, fanning 115 batters in only 13 appearances. He also only walked 20 during that span.
For those of you who did not know, Paxton was originally drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2009 supplemental draft.
Paxton did not sign with the Blue Jays but became part of a NCAA controversy when his agent, Scott Boras, broke NCAA rules by negotiating on his behalf with the Blue Jays.
That violation made him ineligible to play college baseball in 2010. Paxton played independent ball in 2010 and waited for the 2010 draft where he went in the 4th round to the M’s.
This may end up on record as the only time that Scott Boras has ever done the Mariners a favor.