Jerry Dipoto: Dae-Ho Lee could be back in a Mariners uniform soon

Aug 26, 2016, 12:22 AM | Updated: 10:38 am

Optioned last week, Dae-Ho Lee is hitting .500 through his first six games with Triple-A Tacoma. (A...

Optioned last week, Dae-Ho Lee is hitting .500 through his first six games with Triple-A Tacoma. (AP)


It probably won’t be long before Dae-Ho Lee is back in a Mariners uniform.

Since being sent down to Triple-A on Aug. 19, the slugging first baseman has done nothing but torment Pacific Coast League pitching. Through his first six games with the Tacoma Rainiers, he’s hitting .500 with two home runs, three doubles and six RBIs, and he owns an especially impressive 1.413 on-base plus slugging percentage.

That’s exactly what the Mariners want to see from the 34-year-old from South Korea, who had struggled mightily in the second half of his rookie MLB season, getting just six hits and six walks in 65 plate appearances after the All-Star break.

General manager Jerry Dipoto told “Danny, Dave and Moore” that Lee will likely return to the Mariners on Sept. 2, which will be their first game after active rosters expand to 40 players.

“I think it’s just a matter of giving Dae-Ho reps,” Dipoto said of Lee’s trip to the minors. “We had gotten into a run where we were facing a lot of right-handed pitching, which means that Adam Lind was gonna get the bigger bulk of the ABs (at first base). Dae-Ho was in a real funk from the All-Star break forward, and it kept progressively getting worse.”

Dipoto believes a big factor in the swoon was a stretch where Lee played much more regularly and ended up getting worn down.

“I think he was tired,” Dipoto said. “We were playing with a 12-man-position-(player) club while we were trying to get through a lot of these pitching injuries, and Dae-Ho was forced to play every day. Whether it was first base or DH, he was playing every day. Most players like that, and I think in this particular case, it got him into a really good place offensively, and then it might have been the tipping point that actually wound up tiring him out.

“The back end of that started to be a struggle for him. When he got back into a platoon situation with Adam it became a little bit more difficult, and now that we’ve sent him off to Tacoma he can take a breath, he can get back to being himself, he gets a chance to do it every day. There’s a very good chance you’ll see him on Sept. 2 running out there facing some left-handed pitcher in Seattle.”

Team: mariners

Wyman & Bob

Date Starting Pitcher
Friday, June 2 @ 5:05 pm RHP Luis Castillo vs. RHP Jon Gray

Mariners Roof Report

Brought to you by
High 67° | Low 46°
No game today.

Wyman and Bob

Seattle Seahawks Geno Smith...

Brent Stecker

NFL.com’s Edholm: Seahawks one of league’s most complete teams

NFL.com's Eric Edholm ranks the Seattle Seahawks as the NFL's ninth most complete team. He explained why to Wyman and Bob.

2 days ago

Seattle Mariners Bryce Miller...

Brandon Gustafson

Mariners rookie Bryce Miller chats about historic start, fastball, more

Seattle Mariners rookie Bryce Miller joined Wyman and Bob to discuss his great start to his MLB career, his fastball usage and more.

6 days ago

Seattle Mariners Teoscar Hernandez...

Brandon Gustafson

Morosi: Why Mariners can start to shoot up the standings

During his weekly chat with Wyman and Bob, Jon Morosi shared a few reasons he can see the Seattle Mariners making a run up the standings.

7 days ago

Seattle Kraken Shane Wright...

Brandon Gustafson

Morosi: ‘The big question’ with the Kraken focuses on Shane Wright

The biggest question surrounding the Seattle Kraken right now has to do with center prospect Shane Wright, last year's No. 4 pick.

13 days ago

Seattle Mariners Matt Brash...

Brandon Gustafson

Why Rowland-Smith says Mariners need to ‘keep rolling’ with Brash

During his weekly chat with Wyman & Bob, Ryan Rowland-Smith shared his insight into Matt Brash's struggles with the Seattle Mariners.

17 days ago

Seattle Mariners George Kirby...

SeattleSports.com Staff

Seattle Mariners Breakdown: Pitching up, bats down; AL West check-in

Bob Stelton of Seattle Sports makes sense of the Seattle Mariners winning 7 of their last 10 games even though it doesn't feel like it.

22 days ago

Jerry Dipoto: Dae-Ho Lee could be back in a Mariners uniform soon