Mariners place Hunter Strickland on Injured List, call up David McKay
By Ty Gonzalez
The Mariners have lost their de facto closer for the foreseeable future.
After experiencing tightness in his right shoulder in last night’s 7-6 loss to the Red Sox, Hunter Strickland has been placed on the 10-day Injured List. The Mariners have officially called the injury a right lat strain, though the grade of the strain has yet to be clarified and no timeline has been set for his return.
Upon entering last night’s game with a 6-4 lead, Strickland allowed the first two men he faced to reach on a double and a hit-by-pitch. The 30-year-old appeared to be favoring his shoulder, prompting Mariners manager Scott Servais and team trainer Rob Nodine to check in with him. Strickland shrugged both off, then proceeded to allow a go-ahead, three-run homer to Mitch Moreland.
This was Strickland’s third appearance in the Mariners’ first four games of the season. He was tabbed with the loss and blown save, his first of the year in both categories.
To fill the roster spot left open by Strickland, the Mariners have selected the contract of 23-year-old right-handed reliever David McKay. To make room for McKay on the 40-man roster, the Mariners transferred Kyle Seager to the 60-day Injured List.
Across three minor league levels within the Mariners organization (predominantly Double-A Arkansas) last year, McKay posted a 2.60 FIP and 12.89 K/9 in 59.1 innings of work. McKay sports a plus fastball and slider combo, topping out at 94-95 MPH on the radar.
The Mariners acquired McKay from the Kansas City Royals on March 23, 2018 along with relievers Matt Tenuta, Ashton Goudeau, and Colin Rodgers for “cash considerations.” The cash involved, however, has been reported to be as low as $1.00, similar to the deal that brought Tony Zych to Seattle in 2015.
McKay will be in uniform for tonight’s game against the Red Sox. ROOT Sports will have the call at 6:10 PM PT.