The Mariners have yet to make it official, but according to a report in the News Tribune that was also published by mlb.com, the club will option struggling catcher Jesus Montero to the AAA Tacoma Rainiers Thursday and call up Jesus Sucre to take his place. The Mariners will have to clear a 40-man roster spot for Sucre.
The 23-year-old Montero, obtained last year in a trade with the New York Yankees for pitcher Michael Pineda, is hitting .208 with three home runs and nine RBIs in 101 at-bats. He has also struggled defensively.
In 2012, Montero batted .260 with 15 homers and 62 RBIs while splitting time between catcher and designated hitter. Although given the starting job in spring training, he has mainly split time with new backup Kelly Shoppach.
Montero has not played since the third game of the Cleveland series (May 20), is hitting .211 with one homer and two RBIs in 12 games this month. He hasn’t homered since May 8 and has just two extra-base hits.
Through Wednesday, the 25-year-old Sucre, a native of Venezuela, was hitting .302. He had been splitting time with top prospect Mike Zunino. Sucre was in his first year at the AAA level after playing for AA Jackson last season.