Mariners decline options on Gutierrez, Joe Saunders

SEATTLE — The Seattle Mariners have declined 2014 options on outfielder Franklin Gutierrez and left-handed pitcher Joe Saunders.

Gutierrez and Saunders each get a $500,000 buyout. The players originally signed deals with $7.5 million options, and Saunders’ price escalated to $7.9 million based on 32 starts and 180 innings pitched.

The pair become free agents.

Gutierrez appeared in just 173 of the team’s 486 games over the past three seasons with six separate trips to the disabled list. In 41 games last season he batted .248 with seven doubles and 10 home runs.

Saunders went 11-16 with a 5.26 ERA in 32 starts last season with the Mariners.

Seattle also reinstated right-hander relief pitcher Stephen Pryor from the 60-day disabled list.

Pryor appeared in just seven games last season before being placed on the disabled list in April with a tear in his right latissimus dorsi muscle.

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