Mariners recall RHP Emerson Hancock, will debut vs Padres

Aug 9, 2023, 11:59 AM | Updated: 12:11 pm

Seattle Mariners Emerson Hancock...

Mariners prospect Emerson Hancock pitches in the Futures Game at Dodger Stadium on July 16, 2022. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

The Seattle Mariners have leaned heavily on rookie pitchers this year, and they’ll be turning to yet another youngster that has yet to make his MLB debut.

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Emerson Hancock, a first-round pick of the Mariners in 2020, has been added to the MLB roster and will start against the San Diego Padres on Wednesday.

To make room for Hancock on the 26-man roster, the Mariners demoted reliever Devin Sweet to Triple-A Tacoma. To get Hancock on the 40-man roster, the Mariners designated lefty reliever Zach Muckenhirn for assignment. The M’s acquired Muckenhirn from the New York Mets in the trade involving reliever Trevor Gott.

Hancock, 24, was Seattle’s sixth overall in 2020 after a standout career at Georgia. He currently ranks as the Mariners’ fourth-best prospect, per MLB Pipeline rankings.

The Georgia alum is 6 foot 4 and 213 pounds and has spent this season in Double-A, where he has an 11-5 record and 4.32 ERA across 20 starts. In 98 innings, Hancock has struck out 107 batters and walked 38.

In 53 career minor league starts, Hancock has a 3.77 ERA and 242 strikeouts to 93 walks in 241 innings. He also pitched in the Futures Game in 2022, where he shined by striking out the side in a scoreless inning of work.

Hancock has been especially good over his last 10 starts, posting a 2.97 ERA with 57 strikeouts across 57 2/3 innings. What makes that sub-3 ERA even more impressive is he allowed nine earned runs in just 1 2/3 innings on July 5.

Hancock takes the place of fellow rookie starter Bryan Woo, who was placed on the 15-day injured list on Tuesday with right forearm inflammation.

With Woo and Bryce Miller, another rookie starting pitcher, having “graduated” from prospect status, Hancock is currently the Mariners’ top pitching prospect, and certainly was the closest starting pitching prospect to reaching the majors.

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