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Dipoto to ESPN’s Crasnick: Canó won’t be Mariners’ full-time 2B upon return

Jerry Dipoto told ESPN's Jerry Crasnick the Mariners' plans for when Robinson Canó returns. (AP)

Robinson Canó is suspended until August, and he won’t be eligible to play in the postseason when he returns. As such, the Mariners aren’t planning to use him as their full-time second baseman for the final month and a half of the season after he comes back.

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Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto told ESPN senior baseball writer Jerry Crasnick in a story published Monday that Seattle will use Dee Gordon and Canó in a time-share of sorts at second when Canó returns.

“We do know Dee is going to have to play second base as we come down the stretch. Because if we want to be in the postseason – which we do – then we know who our second baseman is going to be. And it’s going to be Dee Gordon,” Dipoto told Crasnick. “… As versatile and athletic as Dee is, it’s not that easy to go play center field for a month and a half and then say, ‘Oh, by the way, you’re going to go play second base in the biggest game of your career when you just haven’t been out there.’ It’s going to take some juggling and we’ll have to figure out a way.”

Gordon, who exclusively played the infield before coming to the Mariners, was acquired by Seattle in a trade from the Marlins prior to this season with the intention of using him at center field. He played center in 39 games but moved back to second, where he won a Gold Glove in 2015, a few days after Canó’s suspension was announced.

Gordon is an All-Star candidate at second base, hitting .280 and leading the majors with 19 stolen bases.

Canó hit .287 with four home runs, 23 RBIs and an .825 OPS in 39 games before he hit the 10-day disabled list with a broken right pinkie. He suffered the injury two days prior to his 80-game suspension for testing positive for the diuretic Furosemide, which was treated as a masking agent for performance enhancing drugs. Canó is expected to be reinstated Aug. 14.

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