Seattle Mariners rumors again address the closer situation.
Fernando Rodney blew another save for the Mariners on Tuesday night (July 7), creating the buzz that Carson Smith should be named as the permanent replacement. Rodney entered the game in the eighth inning, trying to protect a 6-5 lead for the Mariners against the Detroit Tigers. He would get the first two outs before allowing a home run to Yoenis Cespedes that blew the save and took a win away from starting pitcher Taijuan Walker.
During the 2015 MLB season, Rodney has converted 16-of-20 saves, posting a 5.29 ERA and 1.559 WHIP in 35 relief appearances. After posting a rate of 11.1 strikeouts per nine innings in the 2013 MLB season and then 10.3 in 2014, his rate has dropped to just 7.4 in 2015. During his two seasons in Seattle, Rodney has convered 64-of-71 saves to go with a 3-9 record, 3.68 ERA, and 1.415 WHIP. Though he has gotten the job done more often than not, Rodney has continued to allow a lot of baserunners in his appearances.
When Rodney was going through struggles earlier in the season, various Seattle Mariners rumors indicated that Carson Smith was the natural replacement. Before the 2015 MLB season, Smith had pitched just 8 1/3 innings at the Major League level. He had found a lot of success on the mound, but it was in a really small sample size. Smith has continued to pitch well this season, posting a 1.80 ERA and 0.771 WHIP over 35 innings of work. He also has 45 strikeouts and has allowed only 21 hits in that time. The numbers really speak for themselves when debating whether he is a good pitcher in the bullpen or not.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, the Mariners hadn't been very accepting of pitchers not doing well, leading to quite a few bullpen arms being demoted or traded this season. Tom Wilhelmsen, Danny Farquhar, and Dominic Leone are just three of the names from the Opening Day roster that are not on the 25-man roster now. Manager Lloyd McClendon continues to give Fernando Rodney chances, though, even stating when he was replaced as the closer back in June that he "hoped" Rodney would be the closer again soon.
After Rodney blew the save on July 7, Carson Smith came in to pitch the next two innings, striking out five Tigers hitters in the process. He held the opposition at bay until Robinson Cano drove in the winning run in the bottom of the 11th inning. It certainly suggests, once again, that Smith is ready to take over as the full-time closer. McClendon hasn't commented on the situation yet, but it looks like Smith has earned the role. Due to pitching two innings on Tuesday night, interesting Seattle Mariners rumors could include who might be used as the closer Wednesday night. It certainly looks like Joe Beimel or Dave Rollins might just get a shot.
[Image Source: Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images]