5 Possible Replacements for Mariners’ Closer Fernando Rodney

5 of 7

Apr 25, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners relief pitcher

Dominic Leone

(52) piches to the Texas Rangers during the seventh inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Dom Leone

It may seem strange to see Dominic Leone’s name on this list since he was just re-called from Tacoma on Monday. However, he had the look of a future closer during his time with Seattle in 2014. Leone has made just 1 appearance this season with the Mariners, and he sports a disappointing 0-1 record. He was called on to pitch extended innings on Monday night due to an exhausted M’s bullpen. He was dominant over his first 2 frames, but fell apart in his 3rd inning of work. This was completely understandable, and I do not hold it against him.

The 23-year-old right-hander was a revelation for the Mariners in 2014. After never appearing in a game above double-A, Leone pitched 66.1 innings in a Mariners’ uniform after making the team in Spring Training. He posted a minuscule 2.17 ERA, and allowed just 1.161 walks/hits per inning. He struck out 9.5 hitters per 9 innings, and walked just 3.4 per 9 innings.

It was a shock to hear Dom Leone had not made the M’s bullpen out of camp this spring, but his time in the minors was short, as he was summoned to fill Wilhelmsen’s roster spot. I do not anticipate Leone getting the ball in the 9th inning this season for Seattle, but he is an intriguing option down the road with his impressive fastball/slider combination.

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