The former No. 2 overall pick has been shut down indefinitely with shoulder stiffness, and his outlook is "not good," an anonymous club official told Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune.
"I think he’s in a tough spot," manager Scott Servais told reporters, including Larry Stone of the Seattle Times. "He's gone through so much. I really feel for him, knowing he's a very talented guy. The cards the game deals you every once in a while are not always fair. Hopefully he kind of makes a decision where he's at and then can move forward. Right now, he’s just trying to weigh all his options and see what he wants to do."
For his part, Hultzen said that the injury was "painful" and his shoulder was "really, really weak" after throwing live batting practice this week. The 26-year-old missed all of the 2014 season recovering from major shoulder surgery, so a new injury is definitely cause for concern.
In related news, Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto confirmed this week that right-handed relievers Evan Scribner and Ryan Cook are likely to open the season on the disabled list because of strained lat muscles in their respective backs. The injuries could open up roster spots for Tony Zych and non-roster invitee Joel Peralta, Dutton notes.