To make room on the Major League, 40-man, roster the Mariners have designated right-handed pitcher D.J. Mitchell for assignment. Seattle now has 10 days to trade, release or outright the contract of Mitchell.
Chavez, 35, was signed by Seattle as a minor league free agent on March 24, 2013. He was in camp this spring with the Kansas City Royals but was released on March 22.
In six games with the Rainiers this season, Chavez hit .429 (12x28) with 1 double, 1 RBI and 3 walks. He posted a .484 on-base percentage, and was hitting .462 (12x26) vs. right-handed pitching.
Chavez was the Mariners Opening Day left fielder in 2009, but had his season cut short after suffering an ACL tear in his right knee in a collision with Yuniesky Betancourt. Chavez batted .273 (44x161) in 54 games with the Mariners.
He appeared in eight games in the minors in 2010 recovering from knee surgery, and hit .301 (77x274) with 10 stolen bases in 83 games for the Texas Rangers in 2011. Last season he appeared in 64 games for the Baltimore Orioles.
Chavez is a veteran of 11 Major League seasons with Kansas City (2001), Montreal/Washington (2002-05), Philadelphia (2005), New York Mets (2006-08), Seattle (2009), Texas (2011) and Baltimore (2012). He is a.269 hitter with 118 doubles, 32 triples, 26 home runs and 100 stolen bases in 974 career Major League games
Saunders was injured in the first inning of the game on April 10, crashing into the right-field fence while catching a fly ball of the bat of Houston's Jose Altuve to lead off the game. In 9 games this season, Saunders is hitting .286 (8x28) with 1 double, 1 triple, 1 home run and 5 RBI.
Mitchell, 25, is 0-0, 6.75 in one start with the Rainiers this season. He had no-decision on April 8 at Sacramento, allowing 3 earned runs in 4.0 innings pitched in his first start of the season.