The Mariners Wednesday re-signed free agent outfielder and former Gold Glove winner (2010) Franklin Gutierrez, six weeks after Seattle declined the club option on his 2014 contract. Multiple reports say the base salary will be $1 million, with incentives based on production that could add up to an additional $2 million.
Gutierrez, 30, batted .248 with seven doubles and 10 home runs in 41 games last season. He missed 106 games in two DL stints with a strained right hamstring, from April 23-June 21 and June 25-Aug. 25. He was also diagnosed with a form of arthritis — ankylosing spondylitis. In in winter ball in Venezuela, he had a viral infection that stopped him from play.
Gutierrez reached double-digits in home runs (10) for the first time since 2010, despite appearing in only 41 games. He averaged 14.5 at-bats per home run, the sixth-best ratio in the majors by players who hit 10 or more home runs.
He appeared in 478 games for the Mariners from 2009-2013. Gutierrez battled injuries over the last three seasons appearing in only 173 of 486 team games, making six separate trips to the disabled list.
To make room on the 40-man roster, Chance Ruffin was designated for assignment. That means the only remaining player from the 2011 trade of starting pitcher Doug Fister to Detroit is set-up reliever Charlie Furbush.