Weeks DFA’d as Farquhar recalled to bolster bullpen

WeeksRickieThe Mariners recalled right-handed reliever Danny Farquhar on Saturday to bolster their overworked bullpen and designated veteran utility man Rickie Weeks for assignment to make room on the 25-man roster.

Farquhar went 1-0 with a 6.75 ERA in five appearances for Triple-A Tacoma after being sent down three weeks ago following a rough start to his season in Seattle. The 28-year-old was 0-3 with a 6.46 ERA in 20 outings for the Mariners this year after being a huge part of last season’s bullpen success.

Seattle is short-handed in the bullpen after starters J.A. Happ and Felix Hernandez combined to go just 2 2/3 innings in the previous two games, with Hernandez lasting just one-third of an inning in Friday’s 10-0 loss to the Astros.

Weeks signed a one-year, $1 million deal with the Mariners just prior to Spring Training and Seattle hoped to convert the long-time second baseman into a versatile player who could platoon in left field and help out at designated hitter and possibly first base.

But Weeks struggled defensively in the outfield, never got in a game in the infield and hit just .167 (14-for-84) with two home runs and nine RBIs in 37 games.

“Rickie is a professional and went about his business in the locker room in a very professional manner and was a positive influence on a lot of guys,” manager Lloyd McClendon said. “It just didn’t work out on the field, for whatever reason. With the stress we had on the bullpen, it was just a move we had to make.”

Once the Mariners traded for another right-handed outfield/first base bat in Mark Trumbo, Weeks’ role was even further reduced.

“Playing time was certainly going to be diminished quite a bit,” McClendon said.

Weeks, 32, was a 2011 All-Star for the Brewers and spent his first 11 seasons in tjhe Majors playing second base for Milwaukee. The Mariners now have 10 days to trade, release or outright his contract to the Minor Leagues.

Farquhar started one game for Tacoma and pitched two-plus innings in his last three outings as the Mariners looked to give him a chance to regain the form that allowed him to post a 2.66 ERA in 66 appearances in 2014.

“He got better,” McClendon said. “We just wanted him to get out and pitch and gain his control back, get his feel for his pitches back.”

The Mariners now have an eight-man bullpen, but it remains to be seen if they’ll stick with one less position player on the bench heading into an Interleague road series with the Giants on Monday.

3 Comments

Looks like Ruggiano cleared waivers, which is surprising. Divish seems to imply Ruggiano has a bad clubhouse reputation, which is also surprising.

After a little digging, the only account I found of Ruggiano being a bad teammate was a tiff between he and Tino Martinez when Tino was the batting coach for the Marlins in 2013.

Greg, is there indication he was a bad teammate with the Mariners? Should we expect Gutierrez to get the call up for the SF series?

Not sure where you get that Divish was implying he had a bad rep from that. I didn’t see any indication of Ruggiano being a bad teammate. To the contrary, seemed well-liked and a good worker. I don’t know if Guti will get the call. James Jones is also a candidate as he’d add a speed and defense element that Guti no longer brings with his legs and health issues. We’ll see.

It was in his reply post:

Riley Pabst: @RyanDivish pretty shocked he cleared

Ryan Divish: @PBR_Tallboy – not me. Contract, defensive regression, clubhouse reputation, age and limited 40 man spots all played into it.

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