Mariners Lineup: Lewis returns and is in RF, Rodríguez a late scratch
The Mariners get a big boost as they look to continue their 14-game winning streak with 2020 Rookie of the Year Kyle Lewis returning to the lineup and hitting sixth as Seattle hosts the Houston Astros in front of a sellout crowd at T-Mobile Park. Unfortunately, this year’s likely Rookie of the Year Award was a late scratch.
Lewis was activated by Seattle Friday afternoon after a roughly two-month stint on the injured list with a concussion. That came after starting the year on IL due to a knee injury. Lewis played in just four games before suffering the concussion and slugged two home runs.
Julio Rodríguez, however, was scratched just moments before first pitch. Prior to first pitch, he was part of an on-field ceremony celebrating his 2022 All-Star berth. He also caught the ceremonial first pitch from Seattle great Mike Cameron. Rodríguez was scratched with left wrist soreness, the team later announced.
Not only is Lewis back in the lineup for the first of three against the AL West-leading Astros, but he’s set to play in the field for the first time since tearing his meniscus early last season.
Prior to Friday’s game, manager Scott Servais told reporters that Lewis won’t play every day or be in the field every day to start, but he will play in the outfield two to three days a week while mixing in some days at designated hitter.
“We’re happy to have him back anxious to see him out there. Everybody knows what kind of talent Kyle is and he lengthens our lineup, he really does,” Servais said.
J.P. Crawford, SS
Ty France, 1B
Jesse Winker, LF
Carlos Santana, DH
Eugenio Suárez, 3B
Kyle Lewis, RF
Cal Raleigh, C
Adam Frazier, 2B
Dylan Moore, CF
Marco Gonzales, SP
Jose Altuve, 2B
Jeremy Peña, SS
Yordan Alvarez, DH
Alex Bregman, 3B
Kyle Tucker, RF
Yuli Gurriel, 1B
Aledmys Díaz, LF
Jake Meyers, CF
Martín Maldonado, C
Jose Urquidy, SP
• To make room for Lewis on the MLB roster, the Mariners released veteran outfielder Justin Upton. Servais was very complimentary of Upton’s time in Seattle.
“I personally called Justin Upton last night. Justin Upton added a lot to our team and it did not show up in the box score or the stat line,” Servais said. “He joined our team at a point where we were struggling.”
Servais said Upton and Santana as more veteran players added a lot to the Mariners’ clubhouse.
“Bringing the veteran guys in to kind of help our guys along and talking the game and changing the tone of conversations in the middle of the game, in pregame meetings and having a presence in our clubhouse where younger players — and not (just) younger players, but the guys have been around a little bit — to go to them and ask them questions, it was super valuable. Really valuable, as I said to him last night,” Servais said.
• Right fielder Mitch Haniger, who has played just nine games this year, begins his rehab assignment Friday for High-A Everett as he looks to return from an ankle injury that has sidelined him since April. Servais said there’s still no timeline for his return to the MLB club.
“We just have to wait and see how he responds and feels,” Servais said. “It’s been a long time since Mitch Haniger played in a game. If you saw him in (the clubhouse) today, he’s excited to get out and play.”