SEATTLE (AP) The Seattle Mariners have picked up needed depth at catcher after acquiring Carlos Ruiz from the Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for left-handed pitcher Vidal Nuno on Monday at the start of the general manager meetings.
''First and foremost, Carlos brings us a veteran presence with outstanding leadership qualities and a winning pedigree,'' Seattle general manager Jerry Dipoto said in a statement. ''His combination of strong on-base skills, situational awareness and game-calling ability are a welcome addition to the Mariners.''
As part of the trade, the Mariners exercised the option on Ruiz for the 2017 season worth $4.5 million.
The acquisition of Ruiz fills an immediate need for Seattle after the Mariners declined the option on Chris Iannetta for 2017. Ruiz, who will turn 38 before the start of next season, hit .264 with three home runs and 15 RBIs in 62 games last season with the Phillies and Dodgers. Ruiz was traded from Philadelphia to Los Angeles in August.
Ruiz also gives Seattle three options behind the plate heading into spring training along with Mike Zunino and Jesus Sucre. Zunino started last season at Triple-A but became Seattle's primary catcher for the second half of the season, appearing in 53 of the final 67 games of the season. Zunino hit .207 with 12 home runs and 31 RBIs.
Nuno appeared in a career-high 55 games last season for Seattle, with one start, and was 1-1 with a 3.53 ERA. Nuno has been used as both a starter and reliever in his time with the Mariners. Nuno was acquired from Arizona during the 2015 season and has appeared in 126 career games with 42 starts.