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A Strange, Strange Seattle Move

Evidently the Mariners decided not to stop the retro feel of their ballclub with Ken Griffey Jr. Instead, they're taking the bullpen back nearly a decade, too, signing reliever Jeff Zimmerman to a minor league deal with an eye to bring him up to the major leagues.

Why is that so notable? Mostly because Zimmerman hasn't thrown a pitch in the major leagues since 2001. His brother, Jordan, was a pitcher for the Mariners in the 90s, and John Wetteland, the Rangers' pitching coach, worked with him during his hey day as a Texas closer in the late 90s.

Seattle Times Mariners beat writer Geoff Baker claims that Mariners General Manager Jack Zduriencik got a tip saying Zimmerman could be major league ready in a matter of weeks from the Canadian pipeline -- both Zduriencik and Zimmerman hail from north of the border -- but taking a leap of faith on a 36-year-old former closer who hasn't pitched at the highest level in eight years has to be just about unprecedented, at least until Oil Can Boyd's comeback reaches the big leagues.

Naturally, that leads to an obvious question: Can anyone remember another player, a pitcher or hitter, who disappeared for eight years and then came back to make an impact in the big leagues?

By Cameron Smith  |  April 8, 2009; 6:04 PM ET
Categories:  Mariners  
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Roy Hobbs.

Posted by: GeoffreyPeckham | April 9, 2009 2:49 AM | Report abuse

Jordan Zimmerman? I had no idea.

Posted by: JohninMpls | April 9, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

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