The Seattle Mariners continue to play in Peoria, Arizona, yet the tune sounds a bit different as of late. The Mariners have lost 6 of their last 7, which comes after winning 10 straight. Young and old pitchers keep rotating, and the lineups continue to shift and adjust, in hopes of finding a groove; it will take a little longer for the young, old, and new to mesh.
A few things worth noting are that the Mariners seem to have found a new lead-off hitter in newly acquired outfielder Jason Bay. Although he has never hit there in the lineup before I can understand the positioning, and think it is a wise move on manager Eric Wedge’s part. Jason Bay offers speed and the potential of significant power. He appears to be a threat—let’s see what happens.
Felix Hernandez continues to pitch well, and has maintained a solid presence on the field amongst his teammates–yellow t-shirt-clad fans clamor to the stands even in Arizona. On a negative turn, Hector Noesi has an ERA over 17, and continues to struggle. Hisashi Iwakuma, though, is looking amazing. Josh Kinney is sidelined due to a stress reaction; yet, coming back from a hip injury, newcomer Danny Hultzen threw a scoreless inning and remained positive, saying: “You can’t impress anyone on the bench,” he said. “I just hope I get a couple more chances and keep going.” Another part of last year’s minor-league “trifecta,” Taijuan Walker, is getting some throws in as well.
Although Canada is now out of the World Baseball Classic (which only comes every 4 years), Michael Saunders garnered the MVP Award for them. I am happy to say he is now back in teal!
Dave Hansen, Seattle’s new hitting coach, is also progressively (let’s hope) making his rounds. Seattle now leads the Cactus-league in team home runs with 33. Impressive!
Ashley Crane is on Twitter. Follow her at @WildAshC