The Mariners moved to bolster their organizational pitching depth this week by confirming recent reports of minor-league deals with two veteran pitchers: right-hander Micah Owings and lefty Brad Mills.
Owings, 34, was 7-6 with a 4.30 ERA last season in 23 games, including 19 starts, for the York Revolution in the independent Atlantic League. He pitched in parts of six big-league seasons from 2007-12 with three clubs.
Mills, 31, is remaining with the organization. He was 3-3 with a 5.28 this season in nine starts at Triple-A Tacoma before a shoulder injury forced him to the disabled list. His rehab is expected to continue into spring training.
While Owings’ deal includes an invitation to big-league camp, he and Mills loom as likelier candidates to fill out a Tacoma rotation that currently projects to include Cody Martin, Zach Lee, Paul Blackburn, and Andrew Moore.
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Owings was 32-33 with a 4.86 ERA in 138 games, including 68 starts, for Arizona, Cincinnati and San Diego. He has not pitched in the big leagues since undergoing elbow surgery in 2012.
The elbow injury prompted Owings, who has a .283 career average, to attempt to return to the big leagues as a first baseman/outfielder with Washington, Milwaukee and Miami in 2013-14.
After sitting out the 2015 season, Owings began his comeback this season as a pitcher at York.
Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto held front-office posts at Arizona during Owings’ tours with the club in 2007-08 and 2011.
Mills’ resume also includes part of six big-league seasons, although on a more-limited basis. He was 4-4 with a 7.97 ERA in 21 games, including 14 starts, from 2009-15 with Toronto, Oakland and the Los Angeles Angels.
The Mariners previously signed Mills to a minor-league deal on Dec. 15, 2015.
Bob Dutton: @TNT_Mariners