Seattle Mariners’ Spring Battles: Second Southpaw Reliever
Feb 21, 2015; Peoria, AZ, USA; Seattle Mariners pitcher Mark Lowe watches a bullpen session during camp at Peoria Sports Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports
The Seattle Mariners have done a fantastic job this offseason of adding to their roster. The M’s finished just one game shy of making their first postseason appearance since 2001, and Jack Zduriencik was on mission this winter to put them over the top. Just like most clubs at this time of year, the M’s still have a few positions up for grabs. We are now a week into spring training games, and we thought it would be an appropriate time to update fans on the most intriguing Mariners’ position battles.
Today we will discuss what has been one of the under-the-radar spring training position competitions; the second left-hander in the Mariners’ bullpen. The Mariners had one of the most dominant bullpens in the history of the game last season, and they return many of the key contributors in 2015. However, lefty specialist Joe Beimel was not re-signed despite resurrecting his career last year in Seattle.
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Losing Beimel has obviously left a void down in the M’s pen. Thankfully, the Mariners have done a nice job stockpiling young pitchers the past few years. Youngsters, Tyler Olson and David Rollins, have surprised on lookers with their sterling performances early in spring training. Danny Hultzen is full recovered from 2013 shoulder surgery, and looked great in his spring debut on March 11. The Mariners have reunited with veteran southpaw Joe Saunders, signing him to a minor league deal in February. Lucas Luetge is a familiar name to M’s fans, and he has the potential to make a big impact with the Mariners in 2015.
We will begin the list of candidates with Tyler Olson, who has been phenomenal in spring training. Olson has come out of nowhere to take a slight lead in the race to be the second southpaw in the Mariners’ bullpen.
Next: The Early Favorite