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Mariners reliever Juan Nicasio to have season-ending knee surgery

Right knee inflammation twice landed Mariners RHP Juan Nicasio on the DL this year. (AP)

Juan Nicasio, the biggest addition the Mariners made to their bullpen last offseason, is done for 2018.

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The 31-year-old right-hander will undergo knee surgery that will end his season, the team announced Sunday. He has been on the 10-day disabled list since Aug. 4 with right knee inflammation, the second time this year that same knee problem took him out of action. The good news is the knee surgery is said to be more of a cleanup procedure instead of a repair to anything structural.

Signed by the Mariners last December, Nicasio entered the season as closer Edwin Díaz’s primary setup man and early on was atop the American League leaderboard in holds. The Mariners liked Nicasio’s durability – he was tied for the National League lead with 76 appearances with Pittsburgh and St. Louis in 2017 – but injuries and inconsistency plagued him in his first year under contract with Seattle. He was eventually moved to a middle relief role after the Mariners acquired one-time All-Star closer Alex Colomé from Tampa Bay to be the bridge to Díaz.

Nicasio finishes 2018 with a 6.00 ERA, 1.38 WHIP, 19 holds, one save and six blown saves. He is under contract through 2019.

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