Mariners notebook: James Paxton still out, relievers on the mend
Aug 15, 2016, 6:41 PM | Updated: 7:47 pm
ANAHEIM – As the Mariners start a four-game series against a reeling Angels team that has lost 10(!) straight entering Monday, there are a ton of pitching notes and updates to pass along.
The first, which is covered in this post, is that James Paxton will not be starting Tuesday as he still has stiffness in his forearm due to an elbow bruise. Ariel Miranda will take his start on Tuesday while Wednesday remains TBD. Two options for that start are Joe Wieland, who is still with the big-league club, and Cody Martin, who is with Triple-A Tacoma.
Relievers Evan Scribner and Tony Zych are on the mend. Scribner has been out since spring training with a strained right lat and Zych has been out since May 2 with rotator-cuff tendinitis. Both threw scoreless innings for Double-A Jackson Monday night as part of their rehab assignments with Zych hitting 96 mph on the radar gun, according to this Tweet.
There is no return date set for either. With the way the Mariners’ bullpen is shaping up right now, it might be hard to break into it, especially considering Steve Cishek will most likely be activated from the disabled list by the weekend. He’s scheduled to throw an inning in Everett Monday night.
• If Paxton looks like he is going to miss much more time, the Mariners could place him on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to Aug. 8, in which case he’d be eligible to return Aug. 22. It will be interesting to see what corresponding move the Mariners make if Paxton is placed on the DL. It could be another bullpen arm or perhaps they would bring back outfielder Guillermo Heredia for a few days. The pen is in decent shape, although it’s hard to imagine Arquimedes Caminero continuing to throw nearly every day, so it is a possibility.
• The Mariners’ 17-10 record since the All Star break is the best in the American League. The team is eight games over .500 through 116 games for the first time since 2007, when Seattle was 15 games over at its 116th game.
• Felix Hernandez takes the hill Monday in Anaheim on the fourth anniversary of his perfect game. It will also be his 50th career game against the Angels, and it could be career win No. 150. If he gets the win, he will become one of just two active players to have 150 or more wins with one club, joining Detroit’s Justin Verlander.
• The next World Baseball Classic will take place in the spring of 2017 and the manager for Team Japan was at Angels Stadium Monday checking in with Nori Aoki and Hisashi Iwakuma. No word on if either will play.
• Shawn O’Malley is not in the lineup Monday, and when I talked to him earlier he still seemed to be fighting off the cold he had in Oakland. That didn’t stop him from hitting a couple of balls out in batting practice both to left and right field, and no, that’s not an everyday occurrence for him. Consistent playing time has been good for O’Malley, who has hit .289/.379/.434/813 since the start of July.