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32 Taijuan Walker SP
Height/Weight: 6-4/235 | Birthdate: 8/13/1992 | Birthplace: Shreveport, LA | Bats/Throws: R/R | Team: Seattle | College: None | MLB Experience: 2 | Owned/Started%: 49/11 | Average Draft Position: 171.74
SEA

Latest Updates

 

Mariners' Taijuan Walker tosses seven one-run innings Monday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/30/2015) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker allowed one earned run on three hits and no walks in seven innings while striking out five in Monday's 5-3 win over the Angels.

Walker entered the game without having allowed a run in 18 spring innings, and while the Angels were able to break the streak in the second inning, it was still an excellent performance for the presumed fifth starter. Walker has posted a 0.36 ERA and 24:4 K:BB ratio in 25 innings this spring.


Mariners may use six-man rotation with Taijuan Walker and Roenis Elias


by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(3/29/2015) Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon still hasn't decided between Taijuan Walker and Roenis Elias in the battle for the final spot in the starting rotation. That may be because he doesn't have to. 

The News Tribune reported that "all signs point to" the Mariners using a modified six-man rotation, featuring both Walker and Elias, this season. The setup would save wear and tear on the starting staff, so they'd be fresher in the event the Mariners make the postseason. 

Team officials still haven't confirmed the plan. 


Still no decision between Mariners' Taijuan Walker, Roenis Elias


by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(3/28/2015) Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon still hasn't named a winner in the battle for the fifth spot in the starting rotation. 

RHP Taijuan Walker and LHP Roenis Elias are in the running for the spot. Walker has a 0.00 ERA in 18 innings this spring, while Elias' ERA is 6.75. 

McClendon said he wouldn't announce his fifth starter until the final week of spring. Saturday marks the start of the final week, and McClendon said he'd "be close" to making the call, per MLB.com's Greg Johns.


Mariners' Taijuan Walker tosses six scoreless innings vs. Cubs


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker continued his strong spring Wednesday, giving up just two hits and one walk in six scoreless innings while striking out six in his start against the Cubs.

Walker's talent has been undeniable in his trip through the Cactus League, as he's now up to 18 scoreless innings with 19 strikeouts and just four walks and six hits allowed. He's competing with Roenis Elias to win the team's final rotation spot and has done everything in his power to put together a spring deserving of the nod.


Mariners fifth starter down to Roenis Elias, Taijuan Walker


by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(3/21/2015) Roenis Elias and Taijuan Walker will each get one more spring start to win the fifth spot in the Mariners' starting rotation.  

Manager Lloyd McClendon said that he would make his decision before the final week of camp, meaning that RHP Walker and LHP Elias will have time for one appearance each. 

Elias is 0-1 with a 3.86 ERA this spring. Opposing batters are hitting .383 off of him. Walker is 1-0 and has not allowed a run in 12 spring innings. He's allowed four hits, for a .100 opponents' average, and struck out 13. That doesn't mean the job is his, however. 

"My evaluation is probably a little different than yours. I don't worry about the numbers per se," McClendon said, per Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times.


Mariners' Taijuan Walker spins four scoreless innings Thursday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(3/20/2015) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker gave up just two hits and two walks in four scoreless innings while striking out five in Thursday's spring start against the Indians.

Walker has been outstanding this spring, stringing together 12 scoreless innings while striking out 13 batters and allowing just four hits and three walks. He's competing for the fifth spot in the rotation this spring but has done everything possible to secure the gig to date.


Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker making final push for starting gig


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/14/2015) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker threw three scoreless innings Saturday, pushing his streak to eight innings in three spring training appearances. Walker could earn the final spot in the Mariners' starting rotation if he is able to keep this pace up, reports MLB.com.

"He showed a lot of poise when we made a mistake there and put him behind the eight-ball," said manager Lloyd McClendon. "He kept pitching, pounded the zone and did a nice job. I think he's come a long way from September of last year. He's grown quite a bit."

McClendon is hoping Walker can provide depth to the rotation and bullpen that was not there last year.

"You look at last year, we didn't have that," McClendon said. "We were a mess leaving Spring Training. It's nice to have that depth and knock on wood it will stay that way."


Mariners' Taijuan Walker tosses two scoreless frames


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(3/4/2015) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker tossed two scoreless frames in his spring debut on Wednesday. 

Walker gave up just one hit during his two innings of work. He struck out two during the start. Walker is considered a strong favorite to open the season in the rotation, but is technically competing with Roenis Elias for the fifth spot. 

Walker said he was pretty amped for the start, but calmed down after the Mariners put an early run on the board. "The first inning I was up just because I was amped up for the first game and facing their best hitters and potential starting lineup," Walker said. But for the most part, I calmed down, especially after D.J. hit that home run. I was, 'Whew, OK, we got a run. Let's get 'em now.'"

Walker, 22, posted a 2.61 ERA over 38 innings last season. 


Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker to start Cactus League opener


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(3/1/2015) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker will be given the nod for Seattle when the team makes the Cactus League debut Wednesday against the Padres, reports MLB.com.

Walker is battling with Roenis Elias for the final spot in the Mariners' rotation when the season begins. Walker admits to being a little banged up early last season.

"I wasn't available to do anything -- I wasn't even playing catch [at this time last year]," Walker said before the Mariners' workout Sunday morning. "So to be able to start a game in spring and actually have a Spring Training feels good."

Walker posted a 2-3 record with a 2.61 ERA in 38 innings in 2014 and hopes he can make an impression with his start Wednesday.

"It's a game, and it's a competition," Walker said. "I'm just going to go out there and do the best that I can. So if that means I have to go out there and go full speed, then I will."


Roenis Elias battling Taijuan Walker for Mariners rotation spot


by Shawn Krest | CBSSports.com
(2/23/2015) Three years after coming to American from Cuba, LHP Roenis Elias jumped from Double-A to the Mariners, last season. Now, he finds himself fighting to keep his spot in the starting rotation. 

Despite going 10-12, with a 3.85 ERA in 29 starts for the Mariners last year and becoming one of the rookie surprises in the American League, Elias opens spring training battling Taijuan Walker for the fifth spot in the rotation. 

The right-handed Walker is a first-round draft pick of the Mariners, and a top pitching prospect in the organization. 

That means Elias could find himself starting the season back in the minors. 

"There's not a lot of difference between this year and last," he told MLB.com's Greg Johns. "Last year I didn't come in with a spot and this year you could say the same thing. I have to work hard and do what I did last year and even improve on that."

Even if he doesn't win the job in spring, he's earned the respect of Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon. 

"He's got to get stronger," McClendon said. "He pitched well when he was healthy. He's got a dynamic curveball. The change-up got better at the end of the year. His consistency with the fastball command needs to be better and if he does that, he has a chance to be a pretty darn good pitcher in this league for a long time."


Mariners developed new offseason program for Taijuan Walker


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2/5/2015) Taijuan Walker will head to camp this spring competing with Roenis Elias and Erasmo Ramirez for the final spot in the Mariners' rotation. Walker is looking forward to battling for a spot in the rotation, per MLB.com.

"I feel like since I've been drafted, there's always been a lot of depth," Walker said. "We've had a lot of really good arms every year. It's fun competition. You want to go out there and do your best. Pitching against other guys and fighting for that spot brings out the best in everyone."

Walker arrived to camp last spring dealing with a sore shoulder, which set him back. However, the Mariners believe the highly touted prospect will be in better shape this spring.

"The thing about Taijuan is he's still growing," trainer Rick Griffin said. "He's still very young. When he lifts weights, he gets big very quickly and he learned that last year. He didn't do anything wrong. His body type is just such that when he lifts weights, he gets big quickly. So we completely changed his routine this offseason.

"He's doing things that basically center around his core, his legs and his cardio. He's not doing a lot of lifting for his upper body other than things he needs to do to maintain his flexibility and his shoulder strength. We feel going into spring that he'll be a lot better off in that way."


Stiff competition for fifth spot in Mariners' rotation


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(1/25/2015) Taijuan Walker, Roenis Elias and Erasmo Ramirez are the leading candidates for the fifth spot in the Mariners' starting rotation, reports the Tacoma News Tribune. "The more competition, the better," Walker told the paper.

"It brings out the best of everyone who is fighting for the spot."

Walker posted a 1.96 ERA in six outings last September after being recalled from Triple-A Tacoma.


Zduriencik: Mariners remain 'very pleased' with Taijuan Walker


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/10/2014) Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik insisted Wednesday that pitching prospect Taijuan Walker remains an intergral part of the team's plans moving forward, MLB.com reports.

Zduriencik called a report that the team had soured on Walker, in part due to his decision to cut his AFL assignment short, "ridiculous," adding, "We’d have maybe liked Taijuan to pitch a little more, but he really didn’t feel he was where he needed to be to pitch for other reasons. But physically he was throwing 100 mph, he’d given us two really good starts at the end and two really good starts in the Arizona Fall League and he was at the point where he was ready to get into his offseason program.

"There was great logic after our discussions with him at the time. We knew what was going on and he’d pitched great. He had four very successful outings at the end and all that set him up for the coming year. So we’re very pleased with Taijuan Walker. This is a great, young arm, a very talented kid that is going to be a part of this for years to come."

Walker's name has come up in trade rumors this offseason, particularly connected to the team's quest to add a quality right fielder. If he remains with the Mariners organization, he's expected to compete for a rotation spot in the spring.


Braves seeking more in return for OF Justin Upton


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12/8/2014) The Braves are seeking more for outfielder Justin Upton than they received back from the Cardinals for Jason Heyward. However, according to CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman, rival executives believe Atlanta received "too much" in return for Heyward.

The Mariners aren't willing to part with pitcher Taijuan Walker and the Orioles won't give pitcher Kevin Gausman.

Upton is coming off a season in which he hit .270/.342/.491 with 29 home runs and 102 RBI over 566 at-bats. The 27-year-old is entering the final year of his contract and is expected to make $14.5 million in 2015 before becoming a free agent.


Report: Dodgers insisted on Mariners' Walker, Paxton in Kemp deal


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12/6/2014) The Mariners and Dodgers were close to a deal that would have sent outfielder Matt Kemp to Seattle before the Dodgers insisted on receiving either Taijuan Walker or James Paxton in the trade, the Tacoma News Tribune reports.

This turn of events reportedly happened before the Mariners brought Nelson Cruz into the fold, making it seem less likely that the team would acquiesce to the Dodgers' demands at this point. However, the Mariners' one big need heading into the Winter Meetings remains run-producing right fielder who can bat right-handed, and if they ultimately don't wind up signing Melky Cabrera, a Kemp trade could conceivably end up back on the table at some point this offseason.


Taijuan Walker finishes with Arizona Fall League 'healthy'


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker was scratched from his most recent scheduled start in the Arizona Fall League and will not pitch again in the league, although the team said he is completely healthy, MLB.com reports.

"Taijuan is completely healthy and was very impressive in his two outings, but made a personal decision that he needed to return home at this time," general manager Jack Zduriencik said in a statement. "He will continue with his offseason program and we look forward to seeing him at spring training in February."

Walker posted a 2.00 ERA in his two AFL starts, striking out 11 and walking two in nine innings of work.


Mariners SP Taijuan Walker to make a few appearances in AFL


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10/1/2014) Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik said starting pitcher Taijuan Walker will throw a few times in the Arizona Fall League, according to MLB.com. Walker split time between the minors and majors in 2014, going 2-3 with a 2.61 ERA in eight appearances (five starts) for Seattle.

Taijuan Walker takes complete-game loss vs. Blue Jays


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9/24/2014) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker took a hard-luck loss Wednesday, allowing one earned run on four hits and one walk in eight innings while striking out six to pitch a complete game in his team's 1-0 defeat against the Blue Jays.

Walker (2-3) needed just 99 pitches to toss his complete game. He appeared to be in line for a no-decision before the Blue Jays were able to push a run across in the bottom of the eighth inning. Walker ends the year with a 2.61 ERA, 1.29 WHIP and 34:18 K:BB ratio in 38 innings.


Taijuan Walker turns in strong start


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(9/19/2014) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker turned in a solid start Friday against the Astros. 

Walker allowed two runs on eight hits over 5 2/3 innings. He struck out seven and walked two during the outing. Walker gave up his first run early. After a double by Jose Altuve, Dexter Fowler singled in the run. Walker would settle in over the next three innings, before giving up his final run in the fifth. With two outs and a man on third, Fowler struck again, driving in another run on a single. Walker would get out of the inning without giving up any more runs. He was able to get two outs in the sixth inning before he was pulled.

Walker improved to 2-2 with the win. He’ll take on the Blue Jays in his next start.


Mariners announce weekend rotation plans


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9/18/2014) The Mariners announced Wednesday that Taijuan Walker will draw the start in Friday's series opener against the Astros in Houston.

Walker hasn't made a start for the Mariners since late July, but he's managed to make three appearances out of the bullpen in September. He owns a 2.96 ERA and 21:15 K:BB ratio in 24 1/3 innings.

The announcement will move Chris Young back to Saturday and Hisashi Iwakuma to Sunday.


Taijuan Walker worth a prospective pickup


by Scott White | Senior Fantasy Writer
(9/3/2014) In a recent post to the Fantasy Baseball Today blog, I called Taijuan Walker one of the September callups who could matter in Fantasy, and the latest news out of Seattle explains why. Manager Lloyd McClendon is beginning to question how much Chris Young has left in the tank following his implosion Monday. Walker threw six innings of relief in that game, allowing one run on six hits with two walks and five strikeouts.

His numbers at Triple-A Tacoma weren't so great, but that happens in the heavy-hitting Pacific Coast League. It happened last year to James Paxton, who went on to go 3-0 with a 1.50 ERA and 0.92 WHIP in four starts last September, and Walker is considered the more talented of the two. He's also more than 50 innings away from last year's total, giving him plenty left in the tank.

Starting pitchers aren't exactly in short supply in standard mixed leagues right now, but if you're looking to gamble on an upside play, Walker certainly fits the bill.


Chris Young could be out and Taijuan Walker in Seattle rotation


by Marty Gitlin | CBSSports.com
(9/3/2014) Chris Young could be out of the Mariners rotation. Rookie Taijuan Walker could be in.

That is the result the last two appearances from both pitchers. Young was mashed for five runs in 2/3 of an inning Monday in Oakland and has yielded eight runs in his last 4 1/3 innings. The fear is that he could be hitting a wall at 151 innings pitched this season.

"He's in uncharted territory," Lloyd McClendon told the Tacoma News Tribune. "I've got to watch him. I've got to evaluate him. I've got to make a decision."

McClendon indicated that Walker would replace Young in the rotation. Walker gave up just one run in six innings against Oakland in relief of Young.

"Obviously, he pitched extremely well," McClendon said. "I think it showed you what he's capable of. We've just got to get him to the point where he can be consistent every time out with that."


Taijuan Walker tosses six one-run innings in relief Monday


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9/1/2014) Mariners pitcher Taijuan Walker came up big for the team Monday, giving up just one earned run on six hits and two walks in six innings while striking out five in his team's 6-1 loss to the A's.

Walker was called upon to start the second inning after starter Chris Young couldn't make it out of the first, and his first appearance back in the big leagues went exceedingly well, with Walker throwing 61 of his 89 pitches for strikes. He could be a contender to make a few starts in September. Walker owns a 3.00 ERA and 19:15 K:BB ratio in 21 innings.


Erasmo Ramirez, Taijuan Walker expected to pitch long relief in September


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(9/1/2014) Mariners pitcher Erasmo Ramirez is expected to be recalled from Triple-A Tacoma on Tuesday. Ramirez -- along with Taijuan Walker -- will pitch long relief for the final month of the season, per MLB.com.

The Mariners announce September roster moves


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(9/1/2014) The Mariners announced their September callups on Monday. The following players were promoted from the minors: Corey Hart, Justin Smoak, Stefen Romero, Humberto Quintero, Taijuan Walker and Lucas Luetge, Carson Smith. Additionally, Willie Bloomquist was transferred to the 60-day disabled list.