On their way from city to city to city, the Seattle Mariners flew in pitching reinforcements Monday – something they’ve had to do with alarming frequency this season.
In the middle of a three-day, three-city, three-game stretch, the team lost right-hander Chris Reitsma to elbow inflammation, and turned to Tacoma lefty Jake Woods, who joined the team in Cleveland.
It’s an issue that won’t go away, this burning of bullpen arms.
Starters rarely get to the seventh inning. Relievers rarely get days off. It’s a lovely problem to have when J.J. Putz has to keep closing games – it means the team is winning games.
But the Mariners have already used 11 relievers this season, and arms aren’t meant to be abused.
A winning record in June is admirable. If the Mariners keep having to eat more than three innings a game with relief pitching, there won’t be many arms left come August.