Mariners News: M’s Claim 1B Andy Wilkins, DFA LHP Edgar Olmos


The Seattle Mariners claimed 1B Andy Wilkins off waivers from the Baltimore Orioles. LHP Edgar Olmos was DFA’d in a corresponding move.

The Seattle Mariners have been one of the busiest teams in baseball since the offseason began last month, and Jerry Dipoto added yet another player on Wednesday. The Mariners have claimed Andy Wilkins off waivers from the Baltimore Orioles.

The 27-year-old was originally selected by the Chicago White Sox in the 5th round of the 2010 draft. Wilkins spent parts of five seasons in the minor leagues before debuting with the Sox in 2014. He struggled in his brief tenure with Chicago, hitting a meager .140 with 2 doubles, 0 home runs and 2 RBI across 17 games.

More from Mariners News

Wilkins played for three different organizations in 2015. He started the year with the Chicago White Sox before being claimed off waivers by the Toronto Blue Jays at the end of spring training. Wilkins was then purchased by the Los Angeles Dodgers in early May. He landed with the O’s in September before they cut ties with him last week.

The University of Arkansas alum put up decent numbers this season with the Dodgers and Blue Jays’ AAA affiliates. Wilkins posted a .251 batting average with 29 doubles, 18 homers and 79 RBI in 126 games. He registered a .315 on base percentage and slugged .447 through 497 plate appearances.

Wilkins has not had much experience at the big league level, but his stats from the minor leagues suggest he could be a contributor for the Mariners in 2016. Through six seasons riding buses, Wilkins has posted a .272/.343/.474 slash line with 111 home runs and 441 RBI. He has done a particularly nice job producing at the AAA level, hitting .272 with 55 home runs and 194 RBI across 311 games.

The Broken Arrow, OK product began his career as a third base prospect, but has spent the bulk of his time playing first base. Wilkins is an average defender at first base. He boasts a .992 fielding percentage through 3,886.1 innings, and has registered a 9.40 range factor per 9 innings. Wilkins did play 9 games in the outfield last season with the OKC Dodgers, but I doubt Dipoto envisions utilizing him in that capacity next year.

More from SoDo Mojo

Baseball Reference is remarkably optimistic about Wilkins in 2016. They believe he will hit .242 with 5 home runs and 21 RBI across 205 plate appearances next year. FanGraphs is slightly more realistic, as they predict he will not appear in the Major Leagues next season.

Andy Wilkins has the ability to help fill the void left by Mark Trumbo at first base, but I expect him to serve primarily as organizational depth. I still believe the Mariners will bring someone in to play first base in 2016, whether it be through trade or free agency. Justin Morneau is a name that makes a lot of sense, as does a trade for Adam Lind.

Edgar Olmos DFA’d

The Mariners had to clear a spot for Andy Wilkins on the 40-man roster, and Seattle opted to designate Edgar Olmos for assignment. The 25-year-old southpaw made a pair of starts for the M’s in 2015, and appeared in 6 games. Olmos went 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA across 14 innings of work. He spent the majority of the season in Tacoma with the Rainiers where he went 1-1 with 3.55 ERA in 33 innings.

Next: M's Sign RHP Justin De Fratus to a 1-Yr Deal

It is a bit surprising to see the Mariners part with Olmos. Seattle claimed him off waivers last offseason, and it was viewed by many as a shrew pick up. 25-year-old left-handed pitchers are typically a hot commodity, and I expect Olmos to be claimed by another team in the coming days.