The Mariners announced today that they have claimed righty Phillips Valdez off waivers from the Rangers. He becomes the latest player to be pared from the Texas 40-man roster.
Valdez, who’ll soon turn 28, cracked the majors briefly last year for 16 innings of relief. His fastball-change combination wasn’t exceedingly effective in his first taste at the game’s highest level, as he generated only an 8.9% swinging-strike rate, but Valdez showed that he can induce grounders against the world’s best hitters (53.3%).
Though he debuted in a relief capacity, Valdez has spent much of his time in the upper minors as a starter. It remains to be seen how the M’s will use him — or even whether they’ll keep him on their 40-man roster all offseason long — but he will help pad the Seattle organization’s pitching depth.