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To wrap up the winter meetings the Rule 5 Draft is held and teams can select players who have been in the minor leagues for a certain amount of time and have yet to be added to the 40 man roster. This year the Mariners made one selection in the Major League portion of the Rule 5 Draft by selecting Chris Clarke, a right-handed pitcher from the Chicago Cubs organization.

He was drafted by the Cubs in the fourth round in 2019, and worked his way up to Double-A last season. The 6-foot-7 righty was both a starter and a reliever last season, starting 21 games and coming out of the bullpen in five. He pitched 120.1 innings, struck out 110 and walked 25.

The Mariners will have to keep Clarke on the MLB roster or the Injured List the entire season or offer him back to the Cubs organization. He will likely be in the bullpen mix this spring training.

Clarke will debut in Jason A. Churchill’s prospect rankings at No. 20.


Minor League Rule 5 Selections

In the minor league portion of the Rule 5 Draft, the Mariners can select players to keep them in their minor league system. The first player they selected was Frankie Tostado from the Giants organization. He was drafted in the 19th round of the 2017 draft and has been at the Double-A level the last two seasons. The lefty played 67 games at first base and five games a piece at first base and designated hitter. The 6-foot-2 California native slashed .284/.330/.459 in his 77 games last season, and will play the 2023 season for the Triple-A Tacoma Rainiers.

The Mariners also selected Logan Warmoth from the Blue Jays organization. He played all over the field last season, playing both middle infield positions and all three outfield spots. The 27-year-old righty slashed .229/.325/.375. He will also play this season at Triple-A Tacoma.


Rule 5 losses

The Mariners also lost three players in the minor league portion of the Rule 5 Draft. They are not top prospects however. They lost left-handed-pitchers Max Roberts and Jose Aquino to the Astros and Cubs respectively. They also lost infielder Riley Unroe to the Angels who the Mariners had just signed to a minor league deal. They will play the 2023 season in the minors for the teams that selected them.


Mariners Minor League Free Agent Signings

The Mariners signed two pitchers to minor league contracts recently. The first was lefty Blake Weiman who spent the second half of last season with the Double-A Arkansas Travelers after being released by the Pittsburgh Pirates Triple-A team. For the Travelers he pitched 27 innings and had a 2.67 ERA, struck out 26 and walked 3. He must have impressed the M’s enough in his short time with the organization to keep him for 2023.

The other pitcher the Mariners reportedly signed to a minor league contract is fan favorite Casey Sadler. The righty had a very nice 2021 season for Seattle, but then he had an arm injury that kept him sidelined for the entirety of the 2022 season. He will have a chance to make the big league team out of spring training, but if he doesn’t or isn’t quite healthy yet, he could go to Triple-A Tacoma and be depth for the season.

 

 

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Curtis Christianson

Curtis Christianson is the Athletic Director at Concordia Christian Academy. He also works in the Tacoma Rainiers clubhouse during the baseball season.