Taijuan improved, but still has work to do

Taijuan Walker, still just 22 years old, has looked sharp this spring for the Mariners. Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports

Taijuan Walker is getting quite a bit of buzz for his performances so far this spring (just three baserunners in eight scoreless innings) in Arizona, and for an electric fastball that's sitting in the mid-90s. He has improved from where he was last fall, both in delivery and stuff, but he's not back to the promise he showed as a top-10 prospect in the game a few years ago.

Walker threw three shutout innings Saturday against the punchless Arizona Diamondbacks, whose split-squad lineup might not have even been an average Triple-A offense. His fastball was sitting 94-96 without much life, but with more downhill plane than he showed last September or October.