Mark Prior on the road back to the bigs via indy ball

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Mark Prior made his debut for the Orange County Flyers of the independent Golden Baseball League last week and also got a quick profile in the Los Angeles Times.

Prior is still only 29 years of age, which seems incredible, and his fastball has been clocked in the 90s.  Sure, it’s doubtful that he will ever resurface in the major leagues, but it’s not completely out of the question.  Prior feels like he still has some life left in his arm and that he wasn’t given a fair shot at a comeback.

“It’s not the problem of reinventing myself,” Prior told the LA Times. “I never got over the first hump.”

The right-hander went 18-6 with a 2.43 ERA, 1.10 WHIP and 245 strikeouts in 211.1 innings back in 2003 for the Cubs.  He threw his last major league pitch in 2006 and finished that season with a 7.21 ERA and 1.69 WHIP over 43.2 total frames.

Prior has thrown one inning for the Flyers.  He didn’t allow a hit or a run and struck out one batter.

The Mariners have made an offer to bring back Hisashi Iwakuma

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Hisashi Iwakuma tells the Japan Times that the Mariners have made him an offer to return.

Iwakuma became a free agent earlier this month after the Mariners, not surprisingly, declined his $10 million option for 2018. Iwakuma says that it’s “not a done deal,” but “hopefully I will be able to make a positive announcement soon.”

Iwakuma, who turns 37 early next season, made only six starts in 2017, posting a 4.35 ERA, 3.5 BB/9 and 4.6 SO/9 over 31 innings. He went on the disabled list in May and never returned to action, undergoing arthroscopic debridement surgery in September. He hopes to be recovered fully by spring training.