BY Adam Lewis 11:45AM 12/02/2013

Mariners near deal with… Willie Bloomquist

Multiple outlets reported Monday the Mariners plan to sign 36-year-old Willie Bloomquist (.271/.320/.346 career) as a backup infielder that adds speed to the lineup.

WIllie Bloomquist has played every position other than pitcher and catcher during his 12-year career. / WikiCommons

Willie Bloomquist is returning to Seattle.

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports tweeted Monday the Mariners were close to bringing back the 36-year-old utility infielder and Puget Sound-area native. An hour later, Diamondbacks beat writer Nick Piecoro said Bloomquist’s deal is two years and “between $5 million and $6 million total.”


Selected by Seattle in the third round of the 1999 draft, Bloomquist earned a reputation as a hard-nosed, weak-hitting, defensively-gifted, part-timer with the Mariners from 2002-08 before spending most of two seasons in Kansas City (2009-10). He had an 11-game stint with the Reds in September of 2010, then a three-year stay with the Diamondbacks (2011-13) prior to becoming an unrestricted free agent.

A 12-year MLB veteran with a career .271 batting average, Bloomquist makes sense for Seattle as a backup infielder that could mentor second baseman Nick Franklin and shortstop Brad Miller, each of whom will start a season at the big-league level for the first time in 2014.

Bloomquist won’t be a power source. The Port Orchard native has 17 home runs and a .666 OPS. In 2013, he appeared in 48 games and twice on the disabled list (oblique injury/two broken bones in left hand).

A client of super-agent Scott Boras, Bloomquist earned $1.9 million each of the last two seasons in Arizona.


  • Effzee

    Of course. This is Howard showing he is still at the controls. Yet another meek, milquetoast, mundane move made by not-the-GM. Face, meet palm. Absolutely laughable. Again.

  • jafabian

    Good utility player though I think the team has bigger needs. I have concerns that being in the NL for so long might make hitting in the AL a bit of a culture shock for him. Wish the M’s would go for a SP and veteran back up catcher.

  • bugzapper

    F’ing ridiculous. Again. Thanks, Town Car. You’re a genius, as usual.

  • RadioGuy

    I love Willie and am glad he’s coming back as a utility guy, but how much speed will he have left at 36? It’s not much of a risk, money-wise, but I don’t see him doing what Raul Ibanez was able to do before he ran out of gas (although Raul’s value to the team extends farther than the playing field).

    Since the M’s are bringing back former fan favorites, we still could use an outfielder with some extra-base power and speed…what’s Ruppert Jones up to these days?

  • Gary S

    Adam, sorry to hear you drew the short straw and have to report on the Seattle Mariners.

  • Greg

    Is that a cynicism tsunami I see on the horizon?

  • Trygvesture

    Frikkin AWEsome! I am blown away at the way the post-Armstrong Mariners have turned into radical risk takers and are relying on scouting info and smart assessment that nobody else anticipates, building a powerhouse, winning, forward thinking team!! Er, no. That’d be the A’s.

  • lel

    While other teams are picking out blacklisting moves. We go cheap young guys or guys near retirement. When is the front office going to realize to bring back the fans into the stadium you need to pick up a couple of proven batters and another pitcher. Bummer another sad season ahead.