Fans who look at the Seattle Mariners’ 40-man roster usually know all of the names. It’s typically made up of the 25 active Mariners players and 15 members of the Tacoma Rainiers.
For the past two years, the name Yoervis Medina has appeared on the 40-man roster. He’s not with the Mariners or the Rainiers.
Further investigation reveals that Medina is a right-handed pitcher from Venezuela who posted some of the ugliest statistics in the entire minor league system last year: a 1-14 record, with a 6.18 ERA, compiled mostly at Class-A High Desert.
This year, we are starting to learn why the Mariners have thought so highly of Medina, and why he is protected on the 40-man.
Medina had a typically rough start to his season pitching in relief at Double-A Jackson, posting a 1-4 record with a 7.83 ERA in late May.
Then on May 25, he pitched 3 scoreless innings in a road game at Montgomery. From that point forward, he has been virtually unhittable.
In his past 28 games, all at Jackson, Medina has pitched 41 innings and allowed only three runs, for a 0.66 ERA. He’s given up 26 hits and 17 walks, while striking out 51.
Medina, 24, is a thick right-hander listed at 6-foot-3, 245 pounds. He has a fastball that is clocked at 94-95 mph.
With his recent success, Medina has moved into the closer role for Jackson. He’s nailed down five saves since Carter Capps was promoted, with three of his saves longer than one inning.
Starting pitcher Brandon Maurer entered the 2012 season as an afterthought to the so-called “Big Three” of James Paxton, Danny Hultzen and Taijuan Walker in the Jackson Generals’ pitching rotation.
Now the 22-year-old Maurer has emerged as one of the better pitching prospects in the Seattle organization.
A 23rd-round pick in the 2008 draft out of Orange Lutheran High School in Costa Mesa, Calif., Maurer has stayed healthy for an entire season for the first time since 2009, and the results are impressive.
Maurer has made a career-high 24 starts for Jackson, going 9-2 with a 3.20 ERA. He has logged 137 innings, allowing 48 walks while striking out 117.
Most impressive, Maurer has surrendered only four home runs all season.
Maurer has improved as the season has gone on. In 10 starts since the All-Star break, Maurer is 4-1 with a 2.40 ERA and 58 strikeouts in 60 innings pitched.Mike Curto is the radio broadcaster for the Tacoma Rainiers.