Seattle Mariners: 5 Free Agent Relief Pitching Targets

PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 21: Relief pitcher Carter Capps #22 of the Miami Marlins reacts after pitching against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the MLB game at Chase Field on July 21, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 21: Relief pitcher Carter Capps #22 of the Miami Marlins reacts after pitching against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the MLB game at Chase Field on July 21, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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RHP CARTER CAPPS

PEORIA, AZ – FEBRUARY 21: Carter Capps #56 of the San Diego Padres poses on photo day during MLB Spring Training at Peoria Sports Complex on February 21, 2018 in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
PEORIA, AZ – FEBRUARY 21: Carter Capps #56 of the San Diego Padres poses on photo day during MLB Spring Training at Peoria Sports Complex on February 21, 2018 in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

Carter Capps, the former Seattle Mariner, has endured one of baseball’s most intriguing journeys since being traded by the M’s in late 2013. Just a little over five years later, Capps has experienced the highs of being one of the MLB’s premier young relievers and is now at the lowest point of his career, hoping for someone to give him a shot.

In 2014, Capps and his awkward (and often controversial) delivery impressed the Marlins enough to award him a role in their bullpen the following season. That year, Capps entered elite status, posting an incredible 16.84 K/9 and 1.10 FIP in 30 appearances.

But that dreamlike season quickly turned into a nightmare, when Capps hit the disabled list in early August and never returned. After months of rehab, it was determined that Capps would need Tommy John surgery in March 2016.

Capps never pitched again for the Marlins, being dealt to the Padres in a seven-player deal centered around Andrew Cashner. Now 28-years-old, Capps pitched in 11 total games for San Diego to the tune of a 4.62 ERA with a mere 5.11 K/9 and spent all of 2018 in the Minor Leagues after undergoing thoracic outlet surgery in the previous offseason.

Three years is usually the duration it takes for pitchers who’ve undergone Tommy John surgery to reach 100%. That’s roughly where Capps is at now, and though he’s had other complications that have hampered his rehab, this is likely his final shot to make it back to the MLB.

In their current stance, the Mariners are a perfect fit for Capps, who could fulfill a closer or setup role if all goes well for him. That’s a big ‘if,’ and will require a lot of patience from the team that picks him up, but the M’s have plenty of time to give in 2019.

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