Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/18/14
In a way, it’s déjà vu all over again.  In 2012, the Seattle Mariners came into the season thinking they were set at closer.  Brandon League had proved himself in 2011 with 37 saves.  However, after blowing six saves with the Mariners in 2012, Seattle turned to Tom Wilhelmsen.  Wilhelmsen finished the year strong, embracing the closer’s role earning 29 saves.  He started this season strong also, converting his first eleven opportunities.  After a save against the Yankees on May 16th, he had saved eleven out of eleven chances with a 0.50 ERA.  Since then, he has five saves and four blown saves.  For June, he is 0-2 with a 19.29 ERA.  Are the Mariners going to switch closers again?  Here are the options: 1) Keep Wilhelmsen the closer.  Even though Wilhelmsen has had a miserable June, he still has four saves this month.  The trouble has been his control.  He has seven walks in 4.2 IP; he had eight walks in his previous 24 IP.  The last thing a closer wants to do is put runners on.  But, bad numbers aside, there is no proof that Wilhelmsen can’t return to the form that he showed at the beginning of the season.  He had eight saves in eleven appearances and finished April with an ERA under one (0.75).  I think this is the way the Mariners are leaning going into the Oakland series; there are no open signs Eric Wedge is ready to try another closer. If the Seattle Mariners do decide to make a change in closer, the role might fall upon Carter Capps. 2) Go with another Mariner as the closer.  This worked well last season with Wilhelmsen replacing League.  However, the Mariners have no one currently on the roster with experience closing.  It goes a little deeper than that; no Mariner reliever has earned a save in their entire career.  Mariners’ starters go deep into games.  In the last series against Houston, the bullpen got three innings of work.  Carter Capps, the Mariner reliever with the most holds at six, would probably be the first choice if they replace Wilhelmsen but has struggled with the long ball giving up five home runs, the most of any reliever.  Logan Bawcom has the most saves in Tacoma with 11, but he currently isn’t on the 40-man roster which would mean Seattle would have to make a roster move to call him up. 3)  Make a trade.  This is where the blown saves hurt Seattle.  It seems silly to say at this point in the season, but if Wilhelmsen converted his four blown saves, the Mariners might be looking at the trade deadline differently.  Right now, Seattle is 29-38.  To get to .500 at the midway point (41-41), they would have to go 12-3 in the next fifteen, not overly likely for a team who hasn’t swept a series all season.  But, they could’ve been 33-34, maybe looking to add some pieces.  Unless the Mariners get hot, they are not going to add a luxury piece like a veteran closer.  This is why sticking with Wilhelmsen seems the right course; they are unlike to add a reliever through trade and no current Mariner reliever have even earned a save in their career.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Maybe Austin Rivers is good at basketball

Mayweather reportedly willing to give rematch to Pacquiao

Eliminate Hack-A-Player: Don't reward violating sports rules

Jon Jones’ manager: Former champ may never fight again

No easy solution to the problem of early NFL draft entrants

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Josh Smith: Rockets played ‘hero ball’

Pacquiao to have surgery to repair 'significant' shoulder tear

Chris Paul ruled out for Game 1 against Rockets

Stephen Curry thanks father in touching MVP speech

Lawrence Taylor's son pleads guilty to statutory rape

49ers FB Bruce Miller charged with vandalism

David Blatt: ‘No excuses’ for Cavaliers’ Game 1 loss to Bulls

The 2015 NBA Draft big board, first edition

What’s next for the San Antonio Spurs

Five players on the block after the NFL Draft

Five overhyped NFL Draft storylines that didn't play out

WATCH: Chris Johnson wants to play for the Cowboys

WATCH: Chewbacca throws out 1st pitch at Red Sox game

WATCH: Kyrie Irving carves up Bulls' defense for layup

WATCH: Metallica goes Jimi Hendrix for national anthem

Brandon McCarthy shares disturbing info about himself

Ole Miss fan got pregnant because of upset over Alabama

Willie Cauley-Stein legally changes middle name to 'Trill'

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

2015 NBA Draft big board, first edition

Eliminate Hack-A-Player: Don't reward violating sports rules

No easy solution to the problem of early NFL draft entrants

What’s next for the Spurs

Cauley-Stein changes middle name to 'Trill'

NFL has Los Angeles Rams webpage

10 undrafted free agents to watch

Report: Winston snubbed ESPN

Life without Love: The new-look Cavs

Drafted player changes Twitter name to ‘Pick 245′

Floyd Mayweather Punch Out mock video game is great

Report: Steph Curry to be NBA MVP

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.