The Seattle Mariners announced a bullpen change Tuesday afternoon, removing Edwin Diaz from the closer role. As a result, the Mariners will use the closer by committee system.
Manager Scott Servais also added that Diaz has some major mechanical issues that he isn't able to work through at the moment.
Diaz, 23, burst onto the scene last year mowing down hitters with his 100 mph fastball and hard slider. In 51 and 2/3 innings last year, Diaz recorded 88 strikeouts and saved 18 games for the Mariners after displacing Steve Cishek as the closer.
In year two though, Diaz has not been able to replicate his success. He's lost two games and blown two saves with a 5.28 ERA. Last season, Diaz only walked 15 batters and gave up a total of 16 runs. So far this year, he's already walked 10 batters and given up nine runs in significantly less work.
Is this the beginning of the end for Diaz? It's highly unlikely, but there is no doubt he has work to do. His command was spotty last year, but has been nightmarish this season. In most situations, a trip to Triple-A would do Diaz well but the Mariners don't have the pitching depth to do that.
At this point, the Mariners have to be hopeful that less pressure and lower leverage appearance will help Diaz regain his form from last year.