Sucre rejoins team; Ruggiano DFA’d
The Mariners recalled catcher Jesus Sucre from Triple-A Tacoma on Thursday and designated outfielder Justin Ruggiano for assignment. The move was necessary after Seattle traded backup catcher Welington Castillo to the D-Backs on Wednesday as part of a six-player swap.
Sucre opened the season with Seattle, but had been optioned to Tacoma two weeks ago after the club acquired Castillo by trade from the Cubs. Sucre hit .261 (6-for-23) with two RBIs in six games during his stint in Triple-A. He’ll again resume the backup catching duties behind starter Mike Zunino.
Sucre is regarded as a strong defensive catcher, but has hit just .067 (1-for-15) in six games this season for Seattle and .186 in 35 career games.
Ruggiano (pictured) hit .214 with four doubles, two home runs and three RBIs in 36 games after being acquired from the Cubs over the offseason for left-hander Matt Brazis.
Ruggiano, 33, was already limited in his playing time by the frequent use of Nelson Cruz in right field, so the acquisition of Mark Trumbo in the deal with Arizona figured to further reduce his role.
“Those things are never easy,” manager Lloyd McClendon said. “It was a very difficult decision, but you’ve got to have a backup catcher and you can only carry 25, so somebody had to go. Obviously there was going to be a tremendous lack of playing time for whoever that guy was. Hopefully this gives him the opportunity to catch on with somebody else.”
Ruggiano has hit .255 with 45 home runs and 140 RBIs in 434 career games over parts of seven seasons with the Rays, Marlins, Cubs and Mariners.