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Seattle Mariners rumors: James Paxton to begin Minor League rehab assignment

James Paxton is getting closer to returning to the Seattle Mariners.
James Paxton is getting closer to returning to the Seattle Mariners.
Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Seattle Mariners rumors indicate James Paxton is ready to begin a Minor League rehab assignment. These Mariners rumors don't end with just Paxton, though, as Logan Morrison is just about ready to step back on the field again as well. According to a report from MLB.com on Wednesday (May 21), both players are in line to begin those rehab assignments over the weekend.

The 25-year-old pitcher will throw a bullpen session on Thursday (May 22) at Safeco Field and is then scheduled to head to Tacoma to begin a stint there for about two games. That could put him on a path to pitch for the M's again during the first week of June. It could serve as a nice improvement to the starting rotation and it would give them another left-hander to go with rookie Roenis Elias.

After going 3-0 with the team back in September of last season, Paxton was off to a hot start in the 2014 MLB season as well. Through two starts he had posted a 2.25 ERA, a 0.67 WHIP, and 13 strikeouts. He had notched wins in each of those games and had only allowed six hits to opponents. It had looked like he was on the right track to have a spectacular season before he strained his left lat muscle.

Morrison is battling back from a strained right hamstring and will likely be heading to Tacoma as well. Other Seattle Mariners rumors suggest that Taijuan Walker is also close to returning to the mound. Greg Johns of MLB.com has him about a week behind Paxton, meaning that if he too remains on schedule, he could be back with the M's by mid-June. That would serve as another improvement to the starting rotation and place a difficult question in front of the front office.

When James Paxton and Taijuan Walker are ready to go, the team will have to decide what to do with Chris Young, Roenis Elias, Erasmo Ramirez, and Brandon Maurer.