Mariners activate Marte off DL, option Freeman

Mariners activate Marte off DL, option Freeman

SEATTLE -- The Mariners activated shortstop Ketel Marte from the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday and optioned infielder Mike Freeman to Triple-A Tacoma.

Marte has been on the DL since July 20 with mononucleosis. The 22-year-old lost 22 pounds, he said, and the Mariners eased him back slowly while he regained the weight and his strength. He is still eight pounds lighter than he was before falling ill.

"I feel 100 percent," Marte said. "I'm ready to play."

Marte played four rehab games, two with Class A Everett and two with Tacoma. He got a hit in each game, including two doubles and a home run. Marte played nine innings on Monday and he said his energy level was good. He is batting .273 and has a .959 fielding percentage this season with Seattle.

Freeman's first big-league RBI

The Mariners recalled Freeman from Tacoma on Sunday. He started two games and had two hits and an RBI in his Mariners debut.

"I like what Freeman brought to us," Mariners manager Scott Servais said. "He's certainly a mature player, knows his game, looked comfortable at shortstop last night. He's very similar to [utility player Shawn] O'Malley, maybe not quite as quick on the basepaths, but a similar type player."

Worth noting

James Paxton hopes to play light catch on Wednesday. He took a hard comebacker off his left elbow in the ninth inning on Sunday, but X-rays came back negative. The swelling has gone down every day since. The Mariners' off-day Thursday gives them flexibility with their rotation. Servais said they have not decided when the left-hander's next start will be, but he expects it will be Sunday, Monday or Tuesday.

• Reliever Steve Cishek's health is also progressing. He went on the 15-day DL Aug. 2 with a small tear in his left hip labrum shortly after forfeiting his job as closer to Edwin Diaz. Cishek reacted well to a cortisone shot, and he could throw a bullpen as early as this weekend.

• The Mariners only have 11 pitchers on the active roster, rather than the typical 12, but Servais knows they won't be able to get away with carrying the extra position player forever.

"It's a luxury item, because eventually you do need to have the depth in your bullpen," he said. "As long as our starters keep going deep, we're OK. But eventually we probably will need to flip back to 12 pitchers."

Maddie Lee is a reporter for MLB.com based in Seattle. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.