Mariners set Miguel Olivo, Munenori Kawasaki free

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The Mariners announced Wednesday that they’ve declined catcher Miguel Olivo’s $3 million option for 2013 and that they’ve released shortstop Munenori Kawasaki.

Olivo should have been cast out of Seattle’s plans as 2012 went along, but he was still playing about half of the time down the stretch. He ended up hitting .222/.239/.381 with 12 homers and 29 RBI in 315 at-bats.

My favorite part of Olivo’s season was the fact that he walked three times in the 18-inning game against the Orioles on Sept. 18. Those were his only walks of the entire second half. He finished with seven on the year.

The 31-year-old Kawasaki signed a minor league deal with the Mariners because he wanted to play with Ichiro Suzuki and then gained a little notoriety for his dugout dance moves. He ended up hitting .192/.257/.202 in 104 at-bats. It’d probably be for the best if he returned to Japan to continue his career, but at least we’ll have something to remember him by:

Cubs acquire Martín Maldonado from the Royals

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Last night Cubs catcher Willson Contreras was placed on the injured list with a strained muscle in his right foot. That injury inspired the Cubs to go out and get another catcher. They acquired Martín Maldonado in a trade with Kansas City in exchange for lefty Mike Montgomery, in a deal that was announced after the Cubs loss to the Reds.

Maldonado, 32, was a Gold Glove winner in 2017 with the Angels. At the moment he’s hitting .227 with six homers and 17 RBIs in 74 games. Obviously, though, defense is his calling card, as he’s a .220 career hitter with 57 homers and 210 RBIs in 686 games.

Montgomery, 30, is 1-2 with a 5.67 ERA in 20 relief appearances for the Cubs this year. He’s heading back to where his pro career began. He was drafted by Kanas City in 2008, though he was traded away in the James Shields/Wade David/Wil Myers deal in 2012. He made his big league debut for Seattle in 2015. Dayton Moore said last night that the Royals plan to use Montgomery in the rotation as a replacement for Homer Bailey, who was dealt to Oakland on Sunday.