Erasmo Ramirez Would Like To Come Back Now

Dave · June 13, 2013 at 9:50 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Erasmo Ramirez just finished his third rehab assignment in Tacoma. It came in Las Vegas, a veritable hitter’s paradise. The park is so hitter friendly that the Rainiers have put up 11 runs and hit four homers in one inning. As a team, Vegas has an .825 OPS. You get the idea.

In that park, against that line-up, Erasmo Ramirez threw eight shutout innings, allowed just five hits, and struck out seven without walking anyone. This comes after his last start, which included seven shutout innings with five hits, one walk, and seven strikeouts, also against this same Las Vegas team. So, now, in four rehab starts (one at Double-A), Ramirez has allowed a grand total of four runs and has a 21/6 K/BB ratio in 25 2/3 innings. I think he might be okay.

My guess, though, is you’re probably not going to see Erasmo Ramirez in Seattle in the near future unless they decide to use him out of the bullpen, because Jeremy Bonderman has BABIP’d his way into two superficially decent starts. Throwing him out of the rotation after throwing eight shutout innings would look like poor form — and since Bonderman contemplated retiring after he didn’t make the club out of spring training, there’s a chance he might not take a bullpen assignment particularly well — even if it was against the Astros and Ramirez is the demonstrably better pitcher.

They could cut Aaron Harang instead, but again, he just threw a shutout against the Astros and has shown enough to not be on the chopping block. And they probably don’t want to dump Joe Saunders to make room for Ramirez when Bonderman could easily bomb out again or end up back on the DL, at which point they’d then be back to handing a job to Blake Beavan or Hector Noesi.

Ramirez is, when healthy, the clear pick for the Mariners #3 starter. Because of the timing of the Astros series, though, the organization probably won’t put him back in the rotation right now. He’s got nothing left to show at Tacoma, but the timing of Harang and Bonderman’s starts might just conspire to keep him there.

The next 10 games are against Oakland and Anaheim, though. Both teams can hit. I’d guess we’ll find out how long of a leash Bonderman’s start earned him. If he doesn’t show something in his next start, his replacement is ready.


37 Responses to “Erasmo Ramirez Would Like To Come Back Now”

  1. Carson on June 13th, 2013 9:57 pm

    Yup. My thoughts exactly. This shouldn’t even be a hard decision.

  2. BackseatGM on June 13th, 2013 10:00 pm

    Call me a glass half full guy but if Bonderman and Harang continue to pitch so well that we can’t make a place for Erasmo, I don’t really see the problem. Of course, even a glass half full guy sees that the other half is empty and I totally expect Ramirez will be starting in place of someone well before the all-star break.

  3. Spanky on June 13th, 2013 10:09 pm

    Dave…come on! We can’t take a risk on a young, unproven, young pitcher when we’re fighting for a playoff spot. We must have guys who have experience and are leaders and have been through the fire before. That’s why we have Bonderman and why we called up Franklin…uh…wait! Did I get my baseball cliches mixed up again?

    Oh yes, we can’t call up Ramirez too quickly, We have to wait to give them plenty of experience to dominate at the level they’re at. That’s why we brought in veterans like Ibanez and Zunino…oh…wrong one again.

    Ugh! Why do I even follow this team anymore? It’s been over a decade since they could win any games and I don’t even live in Seattle anymore.

  4. Dave on June 13th, 2013 10:10 pm

    It’s not a question of “pitching so well”. Bonderman isn’t good, and hasn’t been good for a very long time, so he’s not going to suddenly become good overnight. But, if he goes 6 innings and only gives up 3 or 4 runs in his next start, maybe that’s not a bad enough performance for them to make the switch. And then, because recent performance holds the most sway — a longstanding problem with this management team — all of the sudden Bonderman’s racked up four or five mediocre starts before he has a stinker that gets him booted from the rotation, and the team loses Ramirez’s contributions for a month.

    The problem with “we’ll just replace him when he’s terrible” is that they have a guy who is not only less likely to be terrible, but much more likely to actually be good. And he’s likely now going to have to wait for a bad pitcher to pitch terribly before he gets back to the big leagues.

  5. Spanky on June 13th, 2013 10:19 pm

    Does leadership have philosophy anymore? When Z was first brought in…the plan was to emphasize defense. Then this year it seemed power was the new plan (although it’s hard to say with a straight face that Morse and Ibanez are your play at “power” for a team). Then I thought…season is a loss so lets bring up some young players and see what they have. But then we have Bonderman and Harang and I just don’t see a philosophy anymore. How does Bonderman/Harang/Ibanez/Morse play in the long-term plans of this team?

  6. gopilots70 on June 13th, 2013 10:22 pm

    I agree totally. Bring up ER now and stop letting these cast off veteran pitchers, or position players for that matter, dictate our moves..

    Scene in the locker room after the 6-1 collapse to the Astros:

    Franklin: Hey Z-man, nice game. Hey, did any of these other dudes get time to develop in Triple A?

    Zunino: Yeah, but only Bonderman I think.

    Franklin: Seems like they were all way-rushed to the big leagues.

    Zunino: Yeah, way, way.

  7. The_Waco_Kid on June 13th, 2013 10:31 pm

    I’m excited for Erasmo. He should be at least competent and reliable, which would be amazing after the roller coaster that’s been this rotation (well, half of it).

    I know what you’re sayin, Dave, and given that Bonderman and Harang have zero future here (and close to zero trade value), it’d be great to have Erasmo up now and I totally buy your analysis that Bonderman is not good, but they won’t consider him bad until there are bad results. Even if it’s luck, if he keeps pitching well, they won’t cut him loose. I don’t blame them for not just assuming he’s lucky, as long as he is on a very short leash. (Harang too)

    How about they send Beavan down, and move Bonderman or Harang to long relief? (if they’re so worried about Bonderman’s pitch counts!)

  8. Spanky on June 13th, 2013 10:34 pm

    I think one of next year’s commercials should be:

    The Seattle Mariners: Reminisce with us on our player’s past glory days as we help them transition into retirement! Watch their skills in the locker room as they mentor failing young players who soon will be DFA or Traded to other teams for their aging players just when the young guys are blossoming! Catch the fun!

  9. nwade on June 13th, 2013 10:53 pm

    My gut reaction to this article is: Great, this means they’re gonna trade Erasmo away for a Peguero-swing-alike, because DINGERS!

  10. GLS on June 13th, 2013 11:23 pm

    Maybe Jack will surprise us.

  11. Steve Nelson on June 13th, 2013 11:27 pm

    Unfortunately, right now the downside to bringing up Ramirez is huge. Should they jettison either Bonderman or Harang, and then Ramirez has one or two shaky outings, the average fans (however many that might be) would be screaming. But if they wait until one of those guys implodes then it will all look come across so much better.

    And even if the logic Dave present makes sense at some level in the office, it won’t hold sway in the court of public opinion, and as we know from experience, it won’t count for much with Wedge. Particularly because just as with Jaso, Wedge seems to have Ramirez mentally marked as a bit contributor.

  12. scraps on June 13th, 2013 11:52 pm

    (BackseatGM and Ivan: I wrote a reply to “Game 67, Astros at Mariners”, to you. But my account was hung up for several hours, preventing my replying. Now my account is fine, and I’ve replied, but the thread has pretty much died. If you want to look, my comment is over there. Cheers.)

  13. GLS on June 13th, 2013 11:59 pm

    It’s quite possibly a pivot point for Jack, how he handles this. Dave is right that Erasmo should be #3 right now, and honestly, it isn’t even close. In six weeks or so, we’ll hopefully be having this same conversation about Hultzen. In both cases, we’ll see what Jack does.

  14. The_Waco_Kid on June 14th, 2013 12:11 am

    Jeff should write a post called “How Stopgap Veteran Starters Came to Irritate a Well-Meaning Mariners Fan.”

  15. seattleslew on June 14th, 2013 12:19 am

    This organization is something else. We all know what to expect from this management. Fans have to let the cluster of poor decisions play out, management reacts to disaster, Ramirez comes in and pitches as well as can be expected, we tell the blogosphere that we knew this would happen and that the Mariners are the Mariners because they never learn from their mistakes.

    This is a mind-numbing process. Stop it, Jack… please.

  16. Adam S on June 14th, 2013 12:39 am

    If the goal is trying to maximize wins this year, then bringing up Ramirez and demoting/releasing Bonderman makes sense.

    What if the goal is to build a strong organization long term. One where there’s fan support, one where fringy starting pitchers will sign for almost nothing or take an NRI because they’ll be given a chance. Do you really want to cut Bonderman or Harang coming off two (or three of four) what appear to be good starts to the casual observer? Does this excite the fan base? Does this make Seattle a more enticing destination?

    I don’t mean to be defending the front office but I’m not sure the .5-1 win we gain by swapping in Ramirez now vs. in three weeks is worth the potential long term risk.

    Best balance might be Saunders to the pen for two weeks while we wait for Harang and Bonderman to show us which one sucks and which one sucks a lot.

  17. maqman on June 14th, 2013 2:00 am

    This road trip should provide a winner of the Walk The Plank Sweepstakes. One of the Three Gimps should be trade bait. We want Erasmo.

  18. pgreyy on June 14th, 2013 2:31 am


    The fan base is not clamoring for more Aaron Harang or Jeremy Bonderman or Joe Saunders–to the point where cutting any of them would have any impact on ticket sales or merchandise.

    Nor, frankly, are they crying out for Erasmo Ramirez.

    The fans care about Felix. Some fans care about Raul.

    …but mostly, the fans wish the team was winning more often than they do. They wish that the M’s were relevant.

    And I used to be heartened by the fact that it seemed like Z had a plan and that his plan seemed to be paying dividends. The team, it seemed, had a future…even if the present was tough to stomach.

    That plan started going away when Wedge was hired. This year, whatever the plan was…it’s been shredded. And whatever this season is…it’s a mess.

    Fans don’t care about Bonderman or Harang.

    Fans just don’t want to be embarrassed to be M’s fans.

  19. PackBob on June 14th, 2013 2:47 am

    Somehow this organization keeps finding ways to put itself in a bind. Problems arise on a nearly daily basis, rarely the good kind. The team spends much of its resources trying to stop self-imposed leaks.

    This year was supposed to be about winning. If Ramirez is ready, make a decision and cut Bonderman or Harang. I’m tired of watching a team made up of veterans past their prime.

  20. Snuffy on June 14th, 2013 3:15 am

    Is there any chance that Harang, Bonderman or JSaunders could be traded? Can’t see getting much of a return, but something is better than nothing and Erasmo needs to be up.

  21. Greeff on June 14th, 2013 5:35 am

    This season is lost so we should act like it.

    I would like to see Erasmo, Miller, Carraway and Morban.

    Erasmo and Miller are no-brainers.

    Carraway isn’t really a prospect, but a would rather see him get a shot than watch Saunders, Harang or Bonderman.

    Morban isn’t really ready, but besides our new outfielder Ackley there isn’t anyone in AAA i would like to see called up (besides a healthy Guti)

    Let’s throw some spaghetti at the wall and see if anything sticks.

  22. SonOfZavaras on June 14th, 2013 5:45 am

    Easy enough. Trade Harang to some contender that needs an innings-eater starter.

    Then tell The Razz to get over here, pronto.

    Ramirez, he’ll be here soon enough- via current starter meltdown or current starter trade.

    I’d put money on it.

  23. bookbook on June 14th, 2013 6:24 am

    Looking for a bright side…

    Um, bringing up Erasmo over any of the bottom three pitchers in our rotation will only hurt our position in the next draft. We didn’t sign Bourn or Swisher because we didn’t wan’t to give up our top draft pick for 2013, we shouldn’t promote Erasmo to make our top draft pick for 2014 lower. (Bench Felix, pronto!)

  24. goat on June 14th, 2013 6:28 am

    maybe their next ad campaign can feature some Beach Boy songs, and they can call them the Feel Good Oldies.

  25. smb on June 14th, 2013 6:47 am

    Ahhh Mariners, ML roster full of sub-replacement level players, #3 starter down in AAA. You gotta love these guys!

  26. PackBob on June 14th, 2013 6:58 am

    I think a lot of fans are to the “who cares” point. Call him up, don’t call him up, it will be the same old Mariners finding ways to lose games. Until the hitting gets better, that’s the way it will be.

    But Ramirez has the potential to pitch well most games and should be seen as an upgrade no matter how well the other 3 have pitched lately. When any of the three amigos pitches a good game, it just makes me wonder how soon the next dud is coming.

    Of course, the M’s would lose some of that critically important veteran presence that trumps talent.

  27. idfan on June 14th, 2013 7:23 am

    Keep ER down in Tacoma for another couple weeks and hope our 3,4 and 5 pitch lights out. Then trade one or more for top line prospects!! What will bringing up ER now and dumping Bonderman do for the club now? Nothing! but a trade if he can show some promise helps a lot.

  28. ChrisFB on June 14th, 2013 7:32 am

    Ha, now watch Z make room for Erasmo by pulling off a surprise trade of Iwakuma for a couple outfielders and a throw-in of a low-A pitcher only Marc and Jay have ever heard of.

  29. ripperlv on June 14th, 2013 7:35 am

    If Erasmo is not called up to start on Tuesday, then my name is Jack Zduriencik.

  30. terryoftacoma on June 14th, 2013 8:27 am

    The series continues.

  31. Gormogon on June 14th, 2013 8:27 am

    More likely, they’re waiting to see who sucks the most first. Saunders is going to give up 8 runs tonight…too bad he has that ridiculous contract.

  32. Jay R. on June 14th, 2013 9:00 am

    Why on earth would anyone give the Mariners anything for Bonderman or Harang? They were readily available and ended up here because no one else wants them. Seattle is the Island of Misfit Toys.

  33. MrZDevotee on June 14th, 2013 9:08 am

    How weird is it that we’ve reached the point with this management team where nearly EVERY move, no matter how obvious, is agreed upon by the (supposedly– but we haven’t played since we were 9) saavy fans FIRST as “what needs to be done THIS TIME” and then it becomes “let’s wait and see how long it takes Z & Company to actually do it.” And then weeks go by, and then it gets done.

    It’s ridiculous at this point. Laughable.

    Without fail– “this guy is demonstrably better” but let’s wait and see how long it takes this group to recognize it and make the move.

    With the RIGHT management team, who has more info than we do, THEY should be recognizing and making the relevant moves while we all think “hmmm… why did they make that move… That’s odd… Why… OHHH! Now it’s obvious… How smart!”

    Instead it’s the fans who recognize first “Maurer really shouldn’t be here yet” (demoted), “Montero simply isn’t an MLB catcher” (sent down to learn a new position mid season), “all these DH/1B part time players are putting us in a bind” (and now we’re in a bind)…

    And now our starting rotation (thought to be the strength of our farm system) is plugged up by the same castoff Rauls, Bays, and- er- Eric Byrnes, of starting pitchers (maybe Harang will ride off on a bicycle to clear room for Ramirez?). Guys who are (like Jeff explained of Raul, and Dave did here) precisely “not so awful” enough to not lose their jobs, while adding nothing to our chances of winning. But the situation is totally unrecognizable to our management, both on the field and off.

    Meanwhile, other contending teams wait around for us to throw perfectly acceptable talent overboard, in some bizarre “save our season” moves no one else would make, so they can pick them up and stick them in their holsters. Laughing at us all the way…

    And NOW… the same cheapskate cluster fuck we have with 1B/DH position players is now our problem with starting pitching?!

    Organizational problem, much?

    I mean sure, Nick Franklin, but blind squirrels and all that… Somebody had to play 2nd when we demoted the guy we thought was the future of the team… Oh, and hey, he’s accidently better than that guy! Nice.


    How far down in the quicksand do we sink before we bring in new people to start pulling guys out of it? How long do we leave the flame out on the hot air balloon before we fix it? How long before we pull the string while we’re freefalling from 30,000 ft? Please make me believe it will happen BEFORE we hit the ground, because it sure doesn’t seem like it.

    Wile E Coyote (ie, any fan like me dumb enough to support you) is gonna splat into the ground first, and THEN your hand will reach in frame and pull the cord, and the parachute will puff out of the crater we made and settle gently on our ruined bodies.

    Pssst… Hey ownership… WE’RE THERE! I defended Z as long as anyone (look at my USSMariner handle, for crying out loud!) but c’mon, ownership. Do YOUR job!!!! Start the cleanup of this mess… Show up for once and help us out here. We’re broken down on the side of the road and you simply pulled over behind us, sitting in your limo, eating baby sandwiches with the crust cut off, worried about what Chris Hansen is up to, sipping champagne, waiting for us to get lucky and fix the car ourselves, while it simply burns to the ground. Leaving us stranded. And then you’re gonna just drive away disappointed, and not even so much as acknowledge us as you make off towards the next mess you create.

    Fuck you, Mariners ownership. Do something!

  34. Paul B on June 14th, 2013 9:10 am

    People always seem to think that if you stack up a big enough pile of misfit toys you can get an all star in return.

  35. Ron on June 14th, 2013 9:15 am

    Erasmo Ramirez is not on a rehab assignment. He was optioned to Tacoma on March 27th. This is important because he is not getting service time while down there. If getting wins is important to this team then this should not matter but if saving a year of control is important then he could be down a long time.

    Ramirez has 126 days of MLB service time. If he is only up for 45 days the Mariners will gain a year of control and he will not be a free agent until 2020.

    After last nights performance holding him down looks insane but for the long term it might be the best thing. I can just see him leaving as a free agent and beating the Mariners in the 2019 playoffs when the Mariners finally become competitive.

  36. killeverything on June 14th, 2013 10:10 am

    Maybe Z will realize if he calls up Erasmo and he does well he can trade him to the Yankees.

  37. Will Lofton on June 14th, 2013 5:20 pm

    I actually don’t mind Harang as much as I used to. He’s had some easy matchups lately, but he’s still pitched to a 4.20 FIP. That’s perfectly fine for a #5 starter.

    If I want to see anyone gone, it’s Bonderman.

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