Mariners notebook: Elias update and juggling shortstops

Sep 17, 2014, 6:51 PM | Updated: 11:21 pm
...

ANAHEIM, Calif. – Roenis Elias has most likely thrown his last pitch of the 2014 season. He was diagnosed with flexor-bundle tightness after coming out of his Tuesday start in the fourth inning and will be flown to Seattle Thursday to have an MRI.

“He’s had a hell of a year,” manager Lloyd McClendon said, confirming that Elias most likely would not throw again this season. “He’s had a tremendous second half, it hasn’t gone unnoticed. He’s done everything we thought he was going to do.”

The obvious hope is Elias does not have anything serious going on with the elbow. In the clubhouse today he didn’t look terribly concerned.

Last night he didn’t want to come out of the game. He didn’t tell his manager or trainer that he felt a little something on a changeup in the third inning. Mike Zunino noticed his fastball didn’t feel as firm in that inning and told McClendon to keep a close eye on him in the fourth. While Zunino was talking to McClendon, Elias told Felix Hernandez that he might have felt something on a changeup he threw. Zunino looked to the dugout after Elias threw what would turn out to be his last pitch and Felix told McClendon he thought he should go get him.

After the game Elias said his plan was to continue to work hard and be ready for his start Sunday. That will not happen regardless of what the MRI shows. McClendon was not ready to announce his pitching plans but Taijuan Walker threw a bullpen session today and the thought is he will most likely start Friday in Houston and push Chris Young and Hishasi Iwakuma to Saturday and Sunday, respectively. We should find out more about that tomorrow.

Lineup!

Austin Jackson, 8
Dustin Ackley, 7
Robinson Cano, 4
Kendrys Morales, DH
Kyle Seager, 5
Chris Denorfia, 9
Justin Smoak, 3
Chris Taylor, 6
Jesus Sucre, 2

James Paxton

Chris Taylor is getting his second straight start. McClendon has been juggling shortstops lately and the results have been favorable. While Taylor has had good streaks and bad streaks he has maintained a .295 average and .370 on-base percentage, strong numbers for a rookie.

After a disastrous first four months of the season, Brad Miller is hitting .308 with a .952 OPS since Aug. 11. I asked McClendon about the challenges of finding playing time for two young shortstops.

“It’s really no challenge,” he answered. “You try to put them in positions to be successful and you try to give them the matchups to be successful where you think they are going to be successful. If you really think about it it is probably a very good idea when you have got two young shortstops. You don’t overexpose them, and you don’t put them in those situations where it will be difficult to succeed. Quite frankly it’s worked quite nicely for us.”

Notes

Mike Zunino was hit by a pitch twice Tuesday, giving him 17 on the year and putting him within two of the club record held by Jose Guillen.

Kyle Seager had his string of 668.1 consecutive team innings played at third snapped last night when he was replaced by Brad Miller late in the game. He has started 114 consecutive games this season, the sixth-longest active MLB streak.

Date Starting Pitcher
Tuesday, September 27 @ 6:40 pm

Mariners Roof Report

Brought to you by
Haze then Sunny
High 80° | Low 54°
Roof is open
Rangers at Mariners today at 6:40pm

Seattle Mariners

Mariners Mitch Haniger...
Brent Stecker

Where Mariners’ quest for playoff spot stands after collapse in KC

How fans should be feeling about the Mariners' chances of ending their postseason drought in less than two weeks and how they are actually feeling right now are probably two different things.
1 day ago
Royals Mariners...
The Associated Press

Mariners blow 9-run lead, KC scores 11 in 6th for 13-12 win

Kansas City erupted for 11 runs in the sixth inning in a wild, 13-12 win Sunday that cost the Mariners a chance to move up in the AL wild-card standings.
1 day ago
Mariners Robbie Ray...
Brent Stecker

Robbie Ray wins anthem ‘standoff’ for Mariners, gets tossed for efforts

Leave it to starting pitcher Robbie Ray to provide a little levity for a Seattle Mariners team that perhaps is in need of it.
1 day ago
Mariners...
The Associated Press

Cal Raleigh homers, drives in 3 as Mariners beat Royals 6-5

Cal Raleigh homered and drove in three runs as the Seattle Mariners rallied for a 6-5 win over the Kansas City Royals on Saturday night.
2 days ago
Mariners Luis Castillo...
Brandon Gustafson

Mariners officially ink All-Star RHP Luis Castillo to 5-year deal

The Mariners have officially inked All-Star ace Luis Castillo to five-year deal, with Jeff Passan reporting it's worth over $100 million.
2 days ago
Mariners Royals...
The Associated Press

Royals beat Mariners 5-1, cut Seattle’s lead for last AL Wild Card spot to 3

Brady Singer silenced the Mariners in a 5-1 Royals win on Friday. With the loss, Seattle's lead for the final AL Wild Card spot is 3 games.
3 days ago
Mariners notebook: Elias update and juggling shortstops