AL West Watch: Mariners Sign Cishek to Close - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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AL West Watch: Mariners Sign Cishek to Close



    AL West Watch: Mariners Sign Cishek to Close
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    PHILADELPHIA, PA - JUNE 25: Steve Cishek #31 of the Miami Marlins delivers a pitch in the ninth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on June 25, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Marlins won 3-2. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

    The Seattle Mariners were perhaps one of baseball's most disappointing teams in 2015, as they were picked by many to win the AL West and compete for a pennant only to finish in fourth place in the division, well out of the running despite all kinds of additions including MVP candidate Nelson Cruz.

    A big reason for their struggles as the fact they blew 24 saves — an unbelievably bad number for that category.

    A big reason for that? The up-and-down roller coaster ride of having the erratic Fernando Rodney as your closer. Rodney actually lost his job and was replaced by Tom Wilhelmsen down the stretch, but now both of those guys are gone.

    Wilhelmsen was actually traded to the Texas Rangers to bolster their strong bullpen for Leonys Martin and Anthony Bass.

    The Mariners acquired Joaquin Benoit earlier this winter, and on Monday they signed Steve Cishek to a two-year deal to be their closer.

    Cishek split time between Miami and St. Louis last season and he excelled after being traded to the Cardinals at the trade deadline. In fact, over his last 40 appearances of the season, Cishek had a 1.75 ERA with 31 strikeouts. In 2013 and 2014, Cishek had 73 saves for the Marlins.