Mariners reliever takes positive step in rehab process

Jun 16, 2024, 12:33 PM

Seattle Mariners Gregory Santos photo day 2024...

Seattle Mariners reliever Gregory Santos poses during photo day at 2024 spring training. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Seattle Mariners reliever Gregory Santos took a positive step Saturday in his rehab from a lat strain that’s sidelined him since spring training.

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The 24-year-old right-hander completed an up-down bullpen session of two 15-pitch sets, Mariners manager Scott Servais said during his pregame media availability Sunday morning. Servais said he was encouraged by what he saw and that Santos “feels good today.”

“I’m excited,” Servais said. “I went down and watched the bullpen yesterday with my own eyes. I saw the first set and it was good. And I guess they said the second set was even better than what I saw. … So he’s definitely trending.”

Servais said Santos will probably throw a live batting practice session at some point in the next week.

The Mariners acquired Santos in a Feb. 3 trade with the Chicago White Sox, but he has yet to throw a pitch this season. The hard-throwing reliever was shut down by a lat strain on March 11 and opened the season on the 15-day injured list before later being transferred to the 60-day IL. Santos then suffered a setback in May, which pushed back the Mariners’ targeted return for him until early July.

Santos would provide a key high-leverage arm for a Seattle bullpen that’s been decimated by injuries. Hard-throwing Matt Brash is out for the season after undergoing Tommy John surgery, lefty Gabe Speier is on the 15-day IL with a rotator cuff strain and closer Andrés Muñoz recently missed a few days after aggravating a lower-back issue.

In his first full season in the majors last year, Santos posted a 3.39 ERA with 66 strikeouts and 17 walks in 66 1/3 innings.

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