Mariners Place LHP Joe Beimel on the 15-Day DL

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On Friday afternoon, the Seattle Mariners announced via twitter that Joe Beimel has been placed on the 15-day disabled list with posterior inflammation in his throwing shoulder. The Seattle Mariners recalled Rob Rasmussen in a corresponding move.

Beimel was extremely effective as a situational lefty in the Mariners’ bullpen last season, but he has failed to replicate his success so far in 2015. He is currently 2-1 with a 4.78 ERA across 42 appearances this year with Seattle. Beimel has struck out 19 and walked 15 over the course of 37.2 innings pitched. He held the opposition to a respectable 1.178 walks/hits per inning in 2014, but that number has ballooned to 1.407 this season.

The 38-year-old was someone Seattle leaned on heavily during the first half of the season, but he has fallen on hard times as of late. Beimel registered an ERA of 2.50 through his first 37 appearances, but has posted a 54.00 ERA over his last 5 games. His low point occurred on Wednesday afternoon when he surrendered back-to-back-to-back home runs in the M’s 7-2 loss against the Texas Rangers.

Greg Johns of MLB.com spoke to Beimel following Wednesday’s debacle, and he suggested his arm is not 100% right now.

Beimel’s splits this season are very disturbing. In 2014, left-handed hitters hit .188 with 2 home runs and 7 runs scored against Beimel over 52 appearances. The St. Mary’s, PA product struck out 17 and walked 2 left-handed hitters in 85 plate appearances. In 2015, lefties are hitting .286 with 4 home runs and 16 runs scored through 36 appearances by Beimel. He has fanned 10 and walked 6 across 67 plate appearances. Obviously, these are not the kind of numbers teams look for out of lefty specialists.

Fans have been quick to lash out at Beimel for his terrible performance. However, it is important to consider the context of his situation before calling for his retirement. Charlie Furbush is typically the first lefty called on in the M’s bullpen, but he has been sidelined since early July. Mark Lowe was the Mariners most effective reliever in 2015, but he was shipped to Toronto on deadline day. Beimel was very useful for a year and a half as a situational left-hander, but he has been tasked with filling the voids left by Furbish and Lowe. The increase in workload is what led to his drop in production and the injury to his left shoulder.

All indications point to Joe Beimel being a great person in the clubhouse as well as a solid relief pitcher. Hopefully, his time on the disabled list will allow Beimel to recharge his batteries. Personally, I felt he was pitching over his head in 2014, but I still believe he is an above-average lefty specialist when used in the right way.

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Rob Rasmussen was recalled from Tacoma today to take Beimel’s spot in the bullpen. The 26-year-old southpaw was acquired as a part of the Mark Lowe trade with the Blue Jays on July 31. Rasmussen sports a record of 2-1, but that is a very deceiving statistic. He posted a 16.20 ERA through 8 appearances with Seattle. The diminutive hurler was touched up for 12 runs on 13 hits through 6.2 innings before being sent down last week.

However, Rasmussen did earn the win in his last appearance after pitching a scoreless frame against the Boston Red Sox. He has a decent arm, and hopefully he can pitch well for the M’s during the next couple weeks.

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