Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Taijuan Walker to pitch in minor league game on Saturday


The Seattle Mariners are hanging a lot of hope on Taijuan Walker. Between him and Hisashi Iwakuma, they might have an elite rotation on their hands with Felix Hernandez as their ace.

They just need those guys to get healthy. Walker has been battling a sore shoulder, and as he slowly works his way back he will clear a key hurdle this weekend.

Teams are appropriately cautious with shoulder injuries, and especially so with 21-year-old phenoms. That explains why the Mariners are micromanaging to the point of only letting him throw fastballs and change-ups.

Walker has thrown only 15 innings in three career starts, all of which came in 2013. The Mariners are expecting big things from him and so they will proceed with caution before allowing him to return to action.

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Tags: Seattle Mariners Taijuan Walker