SEPTEMBER 17: Marmolejos has cleared waivers and been outrighted back to Tacoma, the team announced Friday. He has the right to elect free agency because he’d previously been outrighted in his career, although the team offered no indication he’s planning to do so.
SEPTEMBER 14: The Mariners announced they’ve designated corner outfielder/first baseman José Marmolejos for assignment. Fellow outfielder Jake Fraley has been reinstated from the 10-day injured list in a corresponding move. Marmolejos’ designation also opens a spot on Seattle’s 40-man roster, which now sits at 39.
Marmolejos has already been designated once this season, losing his roster spot back in May after hitting just .139/.266/.278 in his first 94 plate appearances. The 28-year-old cleared outright waivers and was sent to Triple-A Tacoma. He put together an incredible few months with the Rainiers, popping 23 home runs in just 303 plate appearances and mashing at a .360/.452/.700 clip. That earned him another look with the big league club, as the M’s reselected Marmolejos a couple weeks back.
Seattle has given Marmolejos a few starts since he was called back up, but he again struggled in a very small sample of 28 plate appearances. With Fraley ready to return to assume his customary left field role, the front office evidently determined there was no space on the big league club for Marmolejos. Because he’s out of minor league option years, Marmolejos had to again be exposed to waivers to be bumped from the active roster.
While Marmolejos cleared waivers a few months ago, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see another club take a flier on him this time around thanks to his intervening demolishing of Triple-A pitching. Any claiming team would also have to keep the left-handed hitter on the active roster or place him back on waivers themselves.
Fraley has missed a little more than two weeks due to right shoulder inflammation. The 26-year-old got off to a great start to the season but had cooled off significantly before landing on the shelf. He’s still been a productive player overall, though, sporting a season line of .213/.359/.388. It’s an unsightly batting average, to be sure, but Fraley’s massive 18.2% walk rate has helped him post an OBP nearly forty points higher than the .321 league average (excluding pitchers).