The Mariners Friday acquired RHP Erasmo Ramirez from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for RHP Steve Cishek. For Seattle, it’s a re-acquisition: The 27-year-old Ramirez appeared in 47 games for the Mariners between 2012-14, making 35 starts. He has been a starter and reliever for Tampa Bay this season.
“Erasmo brings us a good combination of experience, versatility and control as we look to both be better in 2017, and in future seasons,” said GM Jerry Dipoto in a release. “We’ve added depth to our pitching staff in a variety of ways and maintained flexibility as we move forward with a player that is under club control for 2017, 2018 and 2019.”
Cishek, 31, will become a free agent and was making $6 million. Ramirez earns $3.125 million, and the Mariners reportedly will send $1 million to the Rays to cover a prorated portion of the difference.
Ramirez, a native of Nicaragua, was 4-3 with one save, six holds and a 4.80 ERA with 55 strikeouts in 26 games, including eight starts. As a reliever, he posted a 3.23 ERA in 18 appearances, while limiting opponents to a .189 batting average and .232 on-base percentage.
In six MLB seasons with Seattle (2012-14) and Tampa Bay (2015-17), Ramirez is 29-32 with three saves and a 4.23 ERA in 171 games,
Ramirez signed with Seattle as an amateur free agent in 2007 and made his MLB debut in 2012. The Mariners traded Ramirez, who went 7-12, 4.62 in 35 starts with Seattle, to the Rays March 31, 2015 for LHP Mike Montgomery. Montgomery had a strong season and a half with the Mariners before a trade a year ago with the Cubs that brought 1B Dan Vogelbach.
The Mariners signed Cishek as a free agent Dec. 14, 2015. He appeared in 62 games in 2016, going 4-6, 2.81. This year, Cishek was 1-1, 3.15 with one save in 23 games, all in relief after his May 15 return from injury. He began the season on the disabled list as he recovered from surgery to repair a left hip labrum tear.