The Mariners added MLB’s leader in strikeout-to-walk ratio the past season when they traded a minor league pitching prospect to Oakland for RHP Evan Scribner Tuesday night. Before he missed September with a strained lat muscle, Scribner, 30, made a career-high 54 appearances, striking out 64 hitters in 60 innings while walking four of 238 batters.
“Evan brings us another experienced major league reliever who has exhibited strong control of the strike zone as well as the ability to miss bats,” Jerry Dipoto said after making his eighth trade as Mariners general manager. “He’ll compete for a spot in our major league bullpen.”
The Mariners gave up RHP Trey Cochran-Gill, who turns 23 Thursday. He was 6-5 with six saves and 4.18 ERA in 45 games among Single-A Bakersfield, Double-A Jackson and Triple-A Tacoma in his first full pro season. He limited opponents to a .255 average, while walking 37 and striking out 51 in 75.1 innings in relief.
Cochran-Gill was selected by Seattle in the 17th round of the 2014 draft out of Auburn University. Over 2014 and 2015 he has combined to go 11-5 with 18 saves and a 2.91 ERA (36 ER, 111.2 IP) in 70 games, 1 start.
Scribner pitched for parts of five seasons with Oakland (2012-2015) and San Diego (2011). In his big league career, he is 5-2 with a 4.21 ERA in 125 relief appearances. He struck out 134 batters while walking 27 in 147.2 innings pitched.
Hultzen to become reliever
Dipoto told reporters at the winter meetings in Nashville that one-time top draft pick Danny Hultzen will be tried as a reliever at spring training. The hope is that Hultzen’s surgically repaired shoulder will handle shorter workloads.
“I’ve already spoken to him,” Dipoto said. “We are going to try a new avenue. He’s going to come to spring training with the idea we are going to deploy him as a bullpen guy and see how it works.
“I don’t know how quickly we are going to bring him back, so to speak. We aren’t going to ask him to bounce back four times a week. We are just going to find out if he can handle that type of duty.”
Hultzen, 25, has yet to make it to the big leagues in four years, missing all of 2014 to shoulder surgery.