For an organization like the Seattle Mariners that hasn't made the playoffs in 12 seasons, players like Taijuan Walker offer a rare glimmer of hope for brighter days ahead. The 6-foot-4 right-hander is the team's best pitching prospect since Felix Hernandez in 2003, and recently came in No. 10 on Keith Law's mid-season MLB prospect list.
On Friday, the recently-turned 21-year-old is set to make his Major League debut at Houston, which could possibly be one of only a handful of appearances he makes before the M's shut him down. Walker's already logged a career-high 141 1/3 innings between Double-A and Triple-A this season, and the real question is how he might fit in the M's 2014 rotation.