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Scott Servais wants the Mariners to make opponents ‘uncomfortable’

Franklin Gutierrez will hit second after leadoff man Ketel Marte in the series opener against first-place Texas. (AP)
LISTEN: Mariners manager Scott Servais on Dae-Ho Lee's clubhouse popularity

The streaking Mariners have made watching baseball pretty easy for their fans so far this season, but there’s another word Scott Servais wants to come to mind for opponents when they see the M’s coming up on their schedule.

“The term I use is I want us to be uncomfortable to play against,” Servais told 710 ESPN Seattle’s “Brock and Salk” on Wednesday. “There’s certain teams in the league – I’ll talk about the Houston Astros, they’re uncomfortable to play against. What things they do athletically and can challenge you on the bases and how they match up and stuff like that, I think we bring a lot of those same things. We’ve certainly played that way.”

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That’s one to explain the Mariners’ recent run, which has seen them win 19 of their last 26 games – including a three-game sweep of Tampa Bay earlier this week – and take over first place in the American League West Division.

So, what exactly does a team need to do to be “uncomfortable” to play against? Servais said it’s a combination of being aggressive, pesky, and just plain talented.

“We do have some athletic players. We can grind out at-bats … guy after guy after guy and not have the easy 1-2-3, seven-pitch inning for the opposing pitcher. That’s a big deal in the game as the game plays out every night,” he said. “We’ve got personality in the dugout. You know, we’ve got guys who are chirping and yelling and screaming at each other and the other team and the umpire. It’s good. We have a lot of life.”

You can listen to Servais’ full interview with “Brock and Salk” here. Don’t miss his hilarious stories about hefty slugger Dae-Ho Lee squaring up to bunt (around the 9:55 mark of the podcast) and the reaction he got from veteran reliever Joel Peralta when he pulled him in favor of closer Steve Cishek in the eighth inning on Tuesday (14:15).