Ryan Garko Is The Newest Seattle Mariner

Following very public comments about their pursuit of a right-handed hitter at this weekend's Fan Fest, the Mariners have gone out and signed 1B/DH Ryan Garko:

SEATTLE(AP)—Ryan Garko and the Mariners have agreed to a $550,000, one-year contract, as Seattle tries to address its need for a right-handed hitter.

Terms of the contract obtained Monday by The Associated Press show the 29-year-old first baseman and designated hitter could nearly double his salary, to $1,075,000, if he becomes a regular for Seattle with 600 plate appearances.

It's unclear what role Garko will play in Seattle, but the best guess as of this point is that he will platoon with the left-handed Casey Kotchman at first base. Both left field and DH are currently occupied by Milton Bradley, Ryan Langerhans, Eric Byrnes, and Ken Griffey Jr. Should Garko platoon, he won't come closs to reaching his PA incentive, but what he could do is contribute real value at the plate, as he has a career .887 OPS against left-handed hitters, vs. Kotchman's .712. Garko is not as good a fielder, but the thump he provides could cancel that out.

The addition of Garko may mean the Mariners will go with a six-man bullpen, as previously their roster seemed set. But as of the moment, there has been no official word.

Follow the discussion at Mariners blog Lookout Landing.

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