Notebook: Mariners prospect Andrew Moore gets his shot at the rotation
The future is now for the Mariners, at least as it pertains to Andrew Moore.
Seattle’s 2016 minor league pitcher of the year was called up for the first time in his career to the big leagues on Wednesday afternoon, and the intention is for the 23-year-old Oregon native to have much more than a cup of coffee right now with the Mariners. Moore has been named the starter Thursday in the series finale against the Detroit Tigers, with veteran Yovani Gallardo – Thursday’s initial scheduled starter – being sent to the bullpen.
“Obviously he’s been a very good performer,” manager Scott Servais said of Moore. “He’s been on our radar since Day 1 – high draft pick, really like what we saw in spring training, so we’re gonna give him a shot.”
The 6-foot, 195-pound right-hander isn’t the type who will overpower opposing batters, so he’s known as a pitcher’s pitcher as opposed to a flame-thrower with a raw stuff.
“It’s 88 to 91 (with his fastball). He’s very up-tempo, works very quick in his delivery so the ball does get on hitters,” Servais said. “Continues to work on his breaking pitches because fastball, changeup are probably his best two pitches, but the breaking ball is a viable pitch. … He’s been probably our most consistent pitcher throughout our minor league system.”
Though Moore was in spring training with the Mariners, he started the season in Double-A then was promoted to Triple-A a little over a month ago.
A former Oregon State Beaver, Moore was born in Springfield, Ore., and attended high school in Eugene.
“It’s awesome. I grew up going to games here,” Moore said of getting the opportunity to start at Safeco Field.
The Mariners will take advantage of off days Monday and next Thursday and use a four-man rotation for the next week, with Felix Hernandez making his return from the disabled list on Friday vs. the Astros, followed by another rookie from Oregon State, Sam Gaviglio on Saturday, and Ariel Miranda on Sunday. James Paxton will get the opener against the Phillies on Tuesday, and then it will go back to Hernandez next Wednesday.
The 31-year-old Gallardo, who has a 6.30 ERA in 14 starts this season, will serve as Seattle’s long relief man. Servais said Gallardo’s inability to keep opponents from scoring multiple runs in early innings has been a problem this season.
“We’ve talked about how Gaviglio has stayed away from (the big inning); Gallardo hasn’t been as fortunate,” Servais said. “A lot of those big innings have happened early in games, so you’re kinda behind the 8-ball right out of the get-go.”
• Hisashi Iwakuma will throw a bullpen session and make another rehab start in the minors before returning from the disabled list for a shoulder issue. Though he previously was expected to pitch Saturday for Seattle, his return now won’t come until after the Mariners hit the road after their current homestand ends next Wednesday.
• Even though Ben Gamel has performed well in the leadoff spot this month, Jean Segura is back there after coming off the DL Wednesday afternoon. Servais said Segura will continue to be Seattle’s leadoff man, with Gamel and Mitch Haniger taking turns hitting second. You can read more about Segura and find the lineups for Wednesday’s game in this post.