Seattle Mariners: A closer look at the recent pitching additions

We break down the three pitching prospects the Seattle Mariners added from the Washington Nationals at the trade deadline.

As the July 31 trade deadline approached, it looked like the Seattle Mariners weren’t going to make any moves. However, general manager Jerry Dipoto eventually came through just before the 1 pm PT deadline.

The main move was trading pitcher Mike Leake, who’d made it pretty clear he wanted to leave. In exchange, the Mariners received infielder Jose Caballero.

However, we’re here to look deeper into the other deal the M’s completed, as Roenis Elias and Hunter Strickland were traded to the Washington Nationals. In return, Aaron Fletcher, Taylor Guilbeau and Elvis Alvarado were all sent to Seattle.

The question is, what have the Mariners potentially received with the additions of Fletcher, Guilbeau and Alvarado? Let’s take a look at the three pitching prospects:

Aaron Fletcher

  • Age: 23
  • Throws: Left
  • College: Houston
  • Drafted: Round 14 (431st) in 2018

Fletcher is a good addition, with him immediately being ranked as the M’s 27th-best prospect in their farm system. His scouting report on makes for intriguing reading.

The relief pitcher is capable of reaching 95 mph with his fastball, but usually averages around 92. His slider is his only other above-average pitch.

The 2019 campaign has been a productive one for Fletcher, who has played at the single-A, A+ and Double-A levels. Combined, he has made 33 appearances and recorded a 1.76 ERA, 0.848 WHIP and 10.6 strikeouts per nine innings.

The Geneseo, Illinois native is seen as a multi-innings relief pitcher. He is especially effective against left-handed hitters and is projected to enter the Majors some time in 2020.

Taylor Guilbeau

  • Age: 26
  • Throws: Left
  • College: Alabama
  • Drafted: Round 10 (314th) in 2015

Guilbeau has been around longer than Fletcher, and is actually predicted to make his Major League debut sometime before this season finishes. has him ranked 22nd in the Mariners’ farm system.

The Zachary, Louisiana native has an electric fastball, which averages 95-95 mph. He also has an effective slider and changeup as secondary weapons, but he currently shows below-average control of all his pitches.

This year has seen Guilbeau exposed to Triple-A play for the first and his results have been disappointing to this point. He has pitched 9.2 innings in eight appearances, producing a 4.66 ERA and 1.655 WHIP.

Overall, Guilbeau is currently projected as a left-hand specialist. However, the M’s will attempt to hone his ability — and grow his confidence — to use him in other situations.

Elvis Alvarado

  • Age: 20
  • Throws: Right
  • College: N/A
  • Signed as international free agent by Nationals in 2015

Alvarado is not among the Mariners’ top 30 prospects. He is also a converted outfielder; and yet, there is still a lot to like about him.

The righty averaged around 94 mph on his fastball, but can often reach close to 100. His pitching repertoire has a high ceiling, although he has a long way to go in order to reach his potential.

In this respect, Alvardao’s pitching so far in 2019 has been extremely underwhelming. He has made seven appearances to date — including two starts — and registered a 6.00 ERA and 1.733 WHIP.

On the positive side, the Dominican Republic native’s fastball has been highlighted by 19 strikeouts in just 15 innings. As per Shannon Drayer of 710 ESPN Seattle, he will start in Peoria with the Rookie-level AZL Mariners.

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