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November 2, 2012 at 8:21 PM

M’s give Hisashi Iwakuma a two-year extension

It went down to the wire, but the Mariners reached agreement tonight on a two-year contract extension for right-handed pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma. He would have become a free agent if the Mariners didn’t sign him by Saturday; if that had happened, then even if they had re-signed Iwakuma, he wouldn’t have been eligible to play for the Mariners in the major leagues until mid-May.
But now Iwakuma is available for the entirety of 2013, when he figures to be an integral part of their rotation. He is extended through the 2014 season, with an option for 2015. No salary figures are yet available. He played last year for $1.5 million after signing as a free agent from Japan.


Iwakuma, 31, was 9-5 with a 3.16 ERA in 30 apperances last year. He had two saves, and was 8-4 with a 2.65 ERA in 16 starts. Iwakuma really shined over his last nine starts, going 6-2 with a 1.83 ERA, recording 43 strikeouts. The only American League starter with a lower ERA during that stretch was Detroit’s Max Scherzer (1.72). He struck out 13 against the Blue Jays on July 30 to set a Mariners’ rookie record.
“Kuma really helped solidify our rotation in the second half of the season,” said manager Eric Wedge in a statement. “He is a competitor on the mound and did a great job for us. He got stronger with each start during the season and gained confidence. I am looking forward to seeing him on the field ready to work when we start spring training in Peoria.”
“Hisashi did a very nice job for us at the end of last season as a starting pitcher and we are happy that we have come to a mutual agreement. We look forward to his veteran presence and to his contributions for the next few seasons,” said GM Jack Zduriencik.

Comments | Topics: Hisashi Iwakuma

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