PEORIA, Ariz. – Mariners manager Scott Servais said Monday that he believes first baseman Ryon Healy will be ready for the start of the season and confirmed that he will not be sharing the position once he is ready to go.
“When we acquired Healy, we acquired him to be our everyday first baseman,” Servais said. “That’s the plan if he is healthy and ready to go.
Healy returned to action over the weekend six weeks after undergoing hand surgery to remove bone spurs.
While Healy was gone, Daniel Vogelbach did his best to put his name in the first base conversation, which Servais acknowledged.
“Taking nothing away from what Daniel Vogelbach has done, he came in here and did exactly what he needed to do,” Servais said. “He looks like a different guy. He’s loose, he’s relaxed, he’s kind of the Daniel Vogelbach we thought we acquired a couple of years ago. But players, their timing is different. His timing is really good right now both at the plate and away from the plate. How he is interacting in the dugout, in the clubhouse, he’s just loose and having fun. That’s who he is and the results are playing out on the field.”
The Mariners should have an extra spot on the bench for the first two weeks of the season as they will start with just four pitchers in the starting rotation. Vogelbach is under consideration for that spot.
Lineup! at Anaheim
Dee Gordon, CF
Guillermo Heredia, LF
Mitch Haniger, RF
Daniel Vogelbach, 1B
Taylor Motter, 3B
Mike Ford, DH
Mike Marjama, C
Gordon Beckham, 2B
Zach Vincej, SS
Christian Bergman, RHP
Also scheduled to pitch: Marc Rzepczynski, Dan Altavilla, Chasen Bradford, Jhohendi Jiminian, Wyatt Mills, Joe Pistorese.
• Right-hander Rob Whalen has been optioned to Triple-A but is still being considered for the Mariners’ fifth starter spot when it comes up April 11. Ariel Miranda is also under consideration and he will make a start in a minor league game on the off day Tuesday.
• We are hoping to see the return of Nelson Cruz (quad) and Robinson Cano (hamstring) on Wednesday when the Mariners host the Brewers. Ichiro (calf) could be out a day or two longer as the Mariners want to make sure he can run in the outfield before bringing him back.
• A bit of a surprise sight as the Mariners were loading up the bus to head to Tempe for the game against the Angels. Ben Gamel played catch with a trainer and then headed to the cages to take some swings for the first time since straining his oblique.