Mariners option infielder Shawn O’Malley and pitcher Joe Wieland to minors
Mar 27, 2016, 10:15 AM | Updated: 10:27 am
The Mariners made three roster moves Sunday morning, optioning Shawn O’Malley and Joe Wieland to Triple-A Tacoma and reassigning Casey Coleman to minor-league camp.
O’Malley has had a good spring training, hitting .471/.561/1.267 while walking six times and striking out four times in 34 at-bats. He also added five stolen bases. While he hit better than the others in the battle for the utility spot, he fell short in the most important area.
“He played great, really had a good camp,” said Mariners manager Scott Servais. “I think what he can do as an offensive weapon, he’s versatile in the field. One thing we talked to Shawn about was trying to get him more time at shortstop. That’s probably the one position he is not quite at the same level as the other guys at this time. Doesn’t mean he can’t get there. He’s gotten a lot better in the last couple of years. I think he has really improved his game.”
O’Malley proved to be valuable in a utility role last season, playing both outfield and infield while putting up an OPS+ of 123 in 57 plate appearances. He would be a very interesting option should Luis Sardinas, who most likely has won the utility spot, not hit at the big-league level.
Wieland also had a nice camp. While he had an outside shot to win a spot in the bullpen the preference has always been to have him as starter depth in Tacoma.
“Wieland will start in Tacoma,” said Servais. “If we do need to go get him he will give us a good start or multiple starts in the big leagues. I trust him. I have known him since we drafted him with Texas. I like his makeup and how he goes about things.”
As for Coleman, who was a non-roster invite, he will report to Tacoma as a reliever. While he had struggles early in camp, a mechanical fix seemed to straighten him out.
“I thought he threw the ball well his last few times out,” Servais said.
With the moves, the spring roster is now at 37.