The injuries continue to pile up, as Stephen Pryor now hits the disabled list with a torn latissimus dorsi muscle. It's an injury behind his right shoulder, and its not going to heal quickly. A few years back, Jake Peavy had the same injury, and he missed 10 months. Roy Halladay had just a strain of the same muscle last season and missed 7 weeks. Gulp.
It's safe to say Pryor is going to be out for a while, which is a big hit to the bullpen that is suddenly razor thin on right-handed relievers. Only Carter Capps remains outside of Wilhelmsen to pitch in any sort of high leverage situation (no thanks Beavan), and that leaves a whole bevy of lefties in LaFromboise, Perez, and Furbush. They could recall recall Lucas Luetge, but 4 left-handed relievers is madness.
Greg Johns speculates the team may consider calling up Yoervis Medina, who has managed to survive many rounds of DFAs despite his long-tenured seat warming role on the 40-man roster. Medina has finally started to progress nicely after putting some things together in the bullpen last year, and has been excellent in 6 innings at AAA so far, striking out 7 and only allowing 2 hits. Given his placement on the 40-man roster, he seems to be the most logical choice to get his first taste of the bigs.
The other candidate is Hector Noesi, who recently was promoted to AAA to take the place of the recently departed D.J. Mitchell. He would join last year's rotation mate Blake Beavan in a bullpen assignment, which is where Noesi's stuff may play best going forward anyways. It's worth noting that Noesi pitched well in relief last year, although it was over a handful of innings and mostly in a mop-up role. I'm not quite sure the team is ready to throw in the towel on Noesi as a starter and may prefer to have him in AAA for emergency starts/days I won't watch Mariners baseball.
Outside of the three aforementioned options, the team would have to DFA somebody else to open up another spot, unless they determine that Pryor's injury is severe enough to go on the 60-day DL, which it very well may be, even though he's initially been placed on the 15-day DL. I'm not sure the Mariners would jump at the possibility of adding yet another player to the 40-man roster at this point, so I would lean towards them using an option already on that list. Smart money's on Medina.
In other news, Casper Wells has already been DFA'd by the Blue Jays and will have to go through the same waiting game he did with the Mariners. Given the Mariners new-found need for a guy exactly like Casper Wells (read: Casper Wells), it's possible the team will claim him and bring him back, but the likelihood of that happening will depend on several factors we don't know - how long Michael Saunders is going to be out, and just how worried the team is about Franklin Gutierrez's health going forward.
If Wells were brought back, I have a hard time believing this team would pull a Russell Branyan and give up talent to re-acquire him, but they do have good odds of getting him back via a claim given their spot in the waiver priority. The problem with bringing back Wells on a claim is that it could take a similar amount of time as it did with the Mariners, and by the time he was brought back, both Saunders and Gutierrez could be ready to go, and he could be DFA'd yet again almost immediately. I wouldn't get your hopes up unless Saunders is gong to be out for longer than three weeks or Gutierrez hits the disabled list.
"Free Casper Wells" has turned into quite literally "free Casper Wells" on the American League curb. Something tells me it's not going to be a fun year for him.