The Mariners have brought back right-hander Tom Wilhelmsen on a major-league deal, according to a team announcement. Wilhelmsen recently elected free agency after being outrighted to Triple-A by the Rangers.
According to Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune, Wilhelmsen will be optioned to the minors Friday in order to get him back in game shape. He will be available as an emergency option over the next two days for Seattle, but will be sent down so that the team can call up a starter (likely newcomer Wade LeBlanc) for Friday night.
Wilhelmsen, 32, returns to Seattle after being traded from the Mariners to the Rangers as part of the Leonys Martin trade last November. He posted a 10.55 ERA in just 21.1 innings with Texas, and gave up the remainder of his $3.1 million salary by electing to hit the open market.
Wilhelmsen was solid in five years as a Mariner, going 13-13 with a 2.97 ERA in 267 appearances (2 starts). He joins a veteran group of relievers for Seattle, with Steve Cishek and Joaquin Benoit anchoring a group that includes Mike Montgomery, Vidal Nuno, Nick Vincent and Elias Diaz.