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Sports >  Seattle Mariners

Mariners sign reserve infielder Tommy La Stella

Jan. 19, 2023 Updated Thu., Jan. 19, 2023 at 5:32 p.m.

San Francisco Giants' Tommy La Stella (18) is congratulated in the dugout after hitting a two-run home run against the New York Mets in the first inning at Oracle Park in San Francisco, Calif., on Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021.  (Tribune News Service)
San Francisco Giants' Tommy La Stella (18) is congratulated in the dugout after hitting a two-run home run against the New York Mets in the first inning at Oracle Park in San Francisco, Calif., on Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021. (Tribune News Service)
Adam Jude Seattle Times

The Mariners have added a veteran left-handed bat for a potential utility role, signing Tommy La Stella to a one-year deal, the club announced Thursday.

Left-handed pitcher Justus Sheffield was designated for assignment to make room for La Stella on the 40-man roster.

La Stella, 33, was released by the San Francisco Giants on Jan. 5. He had signed a three-year, $18.75 million contract before the 2021 season — when the Mariners were known to have interest in him — but struggled with injuries in two seasons with the Giants.

La Stella is due to make $11.5 million in 2023. He’s set to earn the major-league minimum from Seattle, and the Giants will owe the rest of his deal.

La Stella is entering his 10th MLB season. He broke into the majors with Atlanta in 2014 and has played for the Cubs (2015-18), Angels (2019-20), Athletics (2020) and Giants (2021-22).

In 667 career games, the infielder is batting .267 with 40 home runs and 204 RBI.

He’s expected to compete for a utility role off the Mariners bench.

“Tommy’s makeup, instincts and experience in winning environments will benefit our team as we look to make the next step,” Mariners president of baseball operations Jerry Dipoto said in a statement. “We value his versatility and strike zone management skills, as well as what I believe to be a high baseball IQ.”

In parts of four season with the Mariners, Sheffield had a 12-12 record and a 5.47 ERA in 186 innings across 48 games (33 starts). Seattle acquired the former first-round draft pick (of Cleveland) in the 2018 trade that sent James Paxton to the Yankees.

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