Mariners Close To Signing German Teen


The Mariners are expected to sign the youngest member of Germany's World Cup roster to a professional contract.

Daniel Thieben, an 18-year-old righthander, will sign when Mariners  international scouting director Bob Engle comes to Germany on Nov. 2, according to a press release on the website of his German team, Buchbinder Legionaere Regensburg.

Thieben is a 6-foot-4, 190-pound righty who should have some projection left on a fastball that usually sits in the mid-to-upper 80s. His best pitch is his curveball, and he's shown a changeup, though it has a long way to go.

Thieben is expected to be one of Germany's starting pitchers in the upcoming World Cup after posting a 2.01 ERA in 22 innings for Regensburg in six appearances. He played for Germany's junior national team over the summer, giving up seven runs in 10 innings of the European championships and taking a loss against Italy.