Parker Markel

Born: September 15, 1990
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 220
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Drafted: 39th Round, 1181st overall pick, 2010 (Rays)
How Acquired: Waiver Claim (from Mariners)
College: Yavapai College (CC)
Agent: KVA Sports


Markel was drafted out of junior college as a strong-armed pitcher with a fastball that reached 93 mph, along with a change and slider that both showed promise.  Scouts had concerns about his delivery, though, and believed he might be limited to relief.  The Rays did in fact move him to the bullpen in 2014.  He generally had weak walk and strikeout rates during his time with them and they did not add him to the 40-man roster, instead letting him leave as a free agent.  He spent a year out of baseball and then a year in independent ball, before signing with Seattle.  He’s put up impressive numbers in AAA, but had a rough time during some brief opportunities in the majors.  He showed a fastball that averages 95-96 mph and relied very heavily on a slider.  The Pirates claimed him off waivers.

R:  2-0-0, 1.74 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, 10.1 IP, 2.6 BB/9, 11.3 K/9

Markel dominated in a brief debut in rookie ball.

A-:  3-4-0, 3.14 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 57.1 IP, 3.6 BB/9, 6.9 K/9

Pitching as a starter in the New York-Penn League, Markel impressed scouts enough with his stuff that Baseball America rated him the third best prospect in the league and 16th best in the Rays’ system.  This was in spite of concerns about his mechanics and inconsistent command.  He also didn’t miss a lot of bats.

A:  11-5-0, 3.53 ERA, 1.26 WHIP, 120.0 IP, 2.6 BB/9, 7.2 K/9

The Rays kept Markel in the rotation in low A all year and he got good results, with better control.  He improved dramatically about a third of the way through the season due to a better change.  BA rated him 25th in the Rays’ system after the season.

A+:  4-7-0, 6.37 ERA, 1.63 WHIP, 82.0 IP, 3.8 BB/9, 7.8 K/9

Markel had a rough time in the Florida State League.  Despite the low-offense environment, opponents batted 298/363/464 against him.

A+:  2-3-2, 5.18 ERA, 1.46 WHIP, 48.2 IP, 3.1 BB/9, 6.8 K/9
AA:  0-1-0, 3.78 ERA, 1.56 WHIP, 16.2 IP, 4.9 BB/9, 7.6 K/9

The Rays sent Markel back to the FSL and moved him full-time to the bullpen.  He didn’t show much improvement, but in mid-July, they moved him up to AA.  Despite the solid ERA, he didn’t pitch well there, either, with control being a particular problem.

AA:  5-3-3, 3.23 ERA, 1.53 WHIP, 53.0 IP, 4.4 BB/9, 6.6 K/9
AAA:  0-0-0, 4.91 ERA, 1.36 WHIP, 7.1 IP, 6.1 BB/9, 8.6 K/9

Markel returned to AA and again had an ERA that was better than his other stats.  He got a late-season promotion to AAA.

AA:  2-0-0, 4.22 ERA, 1.59 WHIP, 10.2 IP, 1.7 BB/9, 9.3 K/9
AAA:  5-3-0, 2.52 ERA, 1.32 WHIP, 60.2 IP, 3.6 BB/9, 7.0 K/9

The Rays sent Markel back to AA to open the season.  He didn’t pitch especially well there, despite greatly improved walk and K rates, but the team moved him up to AAA after a month anyway.  He got much better results there, although with unimpressive walk and K rates.  Tampa did not add him to their 40-man roster and he became a free agent after the season.


Markel did not appear with any team.

IND:  1-1-4, 4.14 ERA, 1.43 WHIP, 41.1 IP, 4.6 BB/9, 13.5 K/9

Markel pitched in relief for Sioux City of the independent American Association.  He wasn’t especially effective, with continued control problems, but he struck out a lot of hitters.  In late September, Seattle signed him to a minor league contract for 2019.

AA (Sea):  2-0-1, 0.00 ERA, 0.52 WHIP, 7.2 IP, 2.3 BB/9, 21.1 K/9
AAA (Sea):  2-0-8, 2.60 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 27.2 IP, 6.8 BB/9, 14.3 K/9
AAA:  1-0-0, 0.00 ERA, 0.50 WHIP, 6.0 IP, 4.5 BB/9, 19.5 K/9
MLB (Sea):  0-0-0, 15.43 ERA, 3.00 WHIP, 4.2 IP, 7.7 BB/9, 5.8 K/9
MLB:  0-1-0, 5.71 ERA, 1.67 WHIP, 17.1 IP, 6.8 BB/9, 10.9 K/9

Seattle sent Markel to AA, but quickly moved him up to AAA.  At both levels he was nearly unhittable, although he had problems with walks in AAA.  He got brief callups to the Mariners in May and July, but those obviously didn’t go well at all.  In late July Seattle designated Markel for assignment and the Pirates claimed him off waivers.  They optioned Markel to AAA after claiming him, but called him up soon after.  He was sent down once more, then spent the season’s final six weeks in the majors.  He posted a good K rate but had trouble throwing strikes.

When the Pirates acquired Markel, Seattle had the third worst pitching in MLB and dfa’d him anyway, so the pickup was a good indication of the clown show their pitching had become.  Markel has two options left, so the Pirates may see him as useful depth.  They’ve become obsessed with relievers who have mid-90s fastballs and poor control, and have had no success with such pitchers recently.

2019: Major league minimum
Signing Bonus: $75,000
MiLB Debut: 2010
MLB Debut: 5/12/2019
MiLB FA Eligible: N/A
MLB FA Eligible: 2025
Rule 5 Eligible: N/A
Added to 40-Man: 11/20/2015
Options Remaining: 2 (USED: 2019)
MLB Service Time: 0.000
June 11, 2009: Drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 32nd round, 960th overall pick.
June 9, 2010:
Drafted by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 39th round, 1181st overall pick; signed on July 31.
November 7, 2016:
Became a free agent.
September 28, 2018:
Signed as a minor league free agent by the Seattle Mariners.
May 12, 2019:
Contract purchased by the Seattle Mariners.
July 23, 2019: Designated for assignment by the Seattle Mariners.
July 27, 2019: Claimed off waivers from the Seattle Mariners by the Pittsburgh Pirates.