Mitchell clears waiver, outrighted to Tacoma
That means Mitchell cleared waivers and remains in the organization after being designated for assignment on Dec. 26 to make room on the 40-man roster for free-agent Raul Ibanez.
Mitchell, 25, went 3-2 with a 2.96 ERA in eight starts after being acquired from the Yankees along with reliever Danny Farquhar in the Ichiro Suzuki trade on July 23.
Mitchell appeared in four games for the Yankees last season, posting a 3.86 ERA with two runs in 4 2/3 innings of relief. He also went 6-4 with a 5.04 ERA in 15 games (14 starts) for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, the Yankees’ Triple-A club.
The 6-footer out of Clemson was a 10th-round Draft pick of the Yankees in 2008 and has been a starter throughout his four seasons in the Minors.
Farquhar, the other pitcher acquired in the Ichiro deal, also remains in the organization and went 1-0 with a 0.54 ERA and four saves in 12 relief appearances for Tacoma last season. The 25-year-old right-hander has pitched well for Lara in the Venezuelan Winter League as well, going 2-1 with a 1.50 ERA and three saves in 21 appearances.
Both those pitchers are potential candidates to be invited to Major League spring training next month, though the Mariners haven’t made any announcement yet on just which non-roster players will get the early call to Peoria.
Jack Zduriencik has mentioned that top pitching prospects Taijuan Walker and James Paxton will get invites, along with catcher Mike Zunino and infielder Nick Franklin. Two other top pitching prospects, Danny Hultzen and Brandon Maurer, will also be at camp since they’re already on the 40-man roster.
The team usually invites about 20 non-roster players, including a good number of veterans from outside the organization who are looking for their shot — guys like Kevin Millwood, Josh Kinney, Adam Kennedy in the past two years.
So far, the only outside candidates known to have signed are pitcher Jeremy Bonderman and first baseman Mike Jacobs, as well as catcher Jesus Sucre and reliever Jonathan Arias, who were with the organization last year but would have been Minor League free agents.
I’d expect that number to grow as more veteran free agents begin picking the best spots to land, once they realize they’re not likely in the market for a 40-man roster spot somewhere.