On Wednesday the Seattle Mariners promoted right-handed pitcher Sam Gaviglio to the major league roster. Although primarily a starting pitcher during his minor league career, he is expected to pitch long relief in the majors. Here’s a quick take on what to expect.
Gaviglio is from Ashland, Oregon, and attended Oregon State University. He was drafted in the fifth round in 2011 by the St. Louis Cardinals. While generally decent in their system he never quite gained traction as a top prospect and had nagging injury issues. After posting a 4.28 ERA in 137 innings in Double-A in 2014, he was traded to the Mariners.
He’s spent the last two and a half seasons in the high minors for Seattle with decent results, posting a 3.71 ERA with a 50/14 K/BB in 63 innings in Triple-A last year and a 3.31 ERA with a 16/3 K/BB in 33 innings this season. He also started one game for Italy this spring in the World Baseball Classic, giving up two runs and five hits in 4.2 innings.
Gaviglio is listed at 6-2, 195, born May 22nd, 1990. A ground ball pitcher, he doesn’t throw especially hard, topping out at 91, and relies a lot on his slider and change-up. There’s nothing spectacular about him but he throws strikes and keeps the ball down. Long relief seems like the role for him.