Mariners ending bullpen experiment with prospect Logan Evans

Jul 3, 2024, 10:11 PM | Updated: Jul 4, 2024, 4:24 pm

Mariners general...

Baseballs sit in a glove as the Mariners warm up before a game against the Los Angeles Angels. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)

(Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)

SEATTLE – Bullpen reinforcements are coming with the anticipated debut of Gregory Santos, whose rehab assignment started Tuesday night with Triple-A Tacoma, seemingly on the near horizon and Gabe Speier a bit further behind but progressing in his work from the mound. What we won’t see is Double-A Arkansas starter Logan Evans become a part of the Seattle Mariners’ bullpen.

How much will Gregory Santos’ arrival to bullpen help the Seattle Mariners?

The attempt to convert Evans to reliever has come to an end with the Mariners making the decision to move him back into the Arkansas starting rotation.

Evans, ranked as 80th-best prospect in baseball by Baseball America, made ten appearances in relief working his way up to back-to-back outings. Of his 10 relief outings, seven were scoreless. His performance out of the bullpen was satisfactory, but the Mariners did not see the uptick in stuff they thought they might. Placing a high value on his arm, the decision was made to end the experiment.

“When we did get it (the uptick), it came at the expense of command,” said assistant general manager Andy McKay. “This kid’s telling us he’s a starter. It’s just who he is.”

The conversion to reliever was never intended to be a permanent move, rather something that filled a current need and got Evans to the big leagues quicker According to McKay, Evans “jumped in with both feet,” but because of his history – a four-year college player that did not put up great numbers – and quick rise having been drafted a year ago, the move was never a sure thing. What they have learned over the past month, however, is valuable.

“He really thrives on the structure of starting, the routine of it, the preparation part of it,” said McKay. “So earlier in the week, we reached out and kind of all talked about the best thing for this player is to get him back in the rotation, and then when we reached out to him, he was ready to get back into the rotation.”

As he converts back, Evans could provide big-league starter depth, something that could be needed down the road this season. The Mariners have shown they have no reservations calling a starter up from Double-A and with Evans close, perhaps this erases one potential need moving forward. It appears to be a win-win for both the player and organization.

“It worked out really well for everybody,” said McKay. “He couldn’t have done it any better than he did before we made the initial move. We’re excited.”

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