A step in the right direction?
By Shannon Drayer
Whether it is being on the road or facing terrible pitching, the Mariners will take it. They will take every hit and all 18 runs they have scored in the last two days and try to build on it.
On Tuesday there was success throughout the lineup with every Mariner getting a hit. Some were small hits, like singles up the middle by Miguel Olivo. Others were monsters, like the shot off the back wall at almost dead-away center by Michael Saunders. Heck, even the missed hits, like the line drive off the bat of Kyle Seager, felt like a step in the right direction.
Yes, over the last two days they faced a guy who was released the next day and another who very well could be back on a bus soon, but we have seen them face such pitchers recently and come up empty handed. A good number of pitches were served up but the Mariners did their part and actually hit them, hit them well, and I am not convinced we would have seen that the month before the All-Star break. I’m not getting my hopes up too high right now because of that roller coaster thing I have talked about all season, but I will watch with interest to see what they can do with what they have been able to put together the last two days.
Franklin Gutierrez continues to progress as on Tuesday he did agility and running drills and was scheduled to take batting practice on the field. A decision is expected to be made Thursday on whether or not he will be sent out on a rehab assignment or if he will need more time. One change when he comes back: he will wear a double flap batting helmet to give him better protection on the basepaths.
Charlie Furbush took himself out of Tuesday’s game after feeling a twinge in his left triceps. The sight was a bit alarming as he was indicating something was wrong in the shoulder area when he called the trainer out. But what we found out later was that he was put through some tests behind the dugout and then picked up a ball and threw about 15 more pitches in the batting cage without incident. After the game he said he was confident nothing was wrong.
“It could have just been that my arm was in the wrong slot or a variety of things,” he said at his locker. “I don’t know. It could have been just one pitch that came out weird.”