The Mariners have made an interesting late season trade. They have just sent reliever/starter, Wade LeBlanc to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The trade comes less than three months after the M’s acquired him.
Wade LeBlanc has left the club the way he arrived, traded for a player to be determined or cash. Just three months ago, the Mariners made a deal with the Blue Jays to pick up the south-paw. He was a useful resource during a period where concerns were being raised about the rotations health. And when the team need him, he took to the mound.
He had only eleven appearances (three of them in relief). Some would say that’s not enough time be evaluated. I am one of them. But LeBlanc played only one purpose to the Mariners, and that was to be a temporary replacement stater. At Least he was able to do that. His best start came in his first appearance with the Mariners, two days after joining the club.
In late June when LeBlanc took the mound for the first time in a Mariners uniform, the hometown faithful was excited. He had a measly three hits scattered off him over six innings. LeBlanc also
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struck out three batters, while walking one. After that night against the St. Louis Cardinals, every time out, he was mediocre.
In his each of his following seven starts through the summer, Leblanc would give up three or four runs. He also was struggling to make it deep into games. Only making it past six innings pitched once. But the runs and short outings weren’t the biggest red flag. No, that was the amount of home runs he allowed.
Again, in that first start, it seemed that little damage could be imposed on LeBlanc, but from his second start on, we began to see an emerging problem. In all of the next eight appearances the Mariner starter would give up a home run, sometimes two.
On four different occasions he surrendered two home runs. Once he allowed three. When given a potentially small window to showcase what you’ve got, giving up that many long bombs isn’t going to cut it.
Because of the homer run parade that occurred most of the time he pitched, the Mariners optioned him to AAA-Tacoma. With their season just ending, the M’s had a choice: should he stay or should he go.
Sadly for Leblanc it was the later, but there’s no telling what he’ll be able to do once he settles into his new home. So long LeBlanc. We hardly knew ye.