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Matt Tuiasosopo, Four Others Go Away

With the season just around the corner, the Mariners have to get busy trimming their Spring Training roster, and early Sunday they cut five more guys, including one moderate surprise!

Matt Tuiasosopo. Tui struck me as being in the mix for that last bench spot, and he has managed to have a fairly productive spring, but he had an option left and he also has a track record of being absolutely terrible against Major League pitching, so this isn't too much of a shock.

Mike Wilson. Mike Wilson was still with the Mariners until today.

Justin Miller. I was fairly fond of the Miller idea when the team first signed him, but they signed so many other relievers after that that his odds were severely reduced. You could easily see him come up from Tacoma later in the year, or you could easily not, and ultimately none of this makes any difference in the grand scheme of things. We're all so small and insignificant.

Denny Bautista. The amazing thing to me is that Denny Bautista apparently struck out 12 guys in 7.1 innings because I only seem to remember him walking dudes and giving up hits. Bautista is a known entity. He's a power fastball/slider righty who never throws strikes but still strikes some guys out. He's certainly a more electric and interesting pitcher than Jamey Wright, but he isn't necessarily better, so he'll report to Tacoma and wait for a turn which he may or may not get. It'll be great for the Rainiers to have Bautista and Dan Cortes in the same bullpen.

Royce Ring. This is the surprise. Not because Ring is a great pitcher or anything, but because for the last week or two we've heard that the Mariners were going to keep him up. Turns out the winner of the Royce Ring/Fabio Castro competition was nobody. Ring has had a decent spring, but with Aaron Laffey, this team already has a limited lefty who should never see a righty in his life.

The Mariners still aren't down to 25 men, but this makes the picture more clear. Josh Wilson and Chris Gimenez now have a better shot at that last bench spot, although the Mariners could grab a guy off waivers or swing a trade any day now as every other team in baseball will also be clearing roster room. And all of a sudden Tom Wilhelmsen now looks like a real strong candidate for the bullpen after spending last year with A-ball Clinton. The team could give that spot to Cesar Jimenez, but Cesar Jimenez has looked terrible. And, of course, there's the waiver/trade option. But Wilhelmsen can be impressive, and the team knows it.