Ichiro makes Mariners’ opening night roster, will start in LF

Mar 28, 2018, 6:32 PM | Updated: 8:40 pm
Ichiro Suzuki has been deemed healthy enough to play on opening night for the Mariners. (AP)...
Ichiro Suzuki has been deemed healthy enough to play on opening night for the Mariners. (AP)

For the first time in six years, Ichiro Suzuki will be in the lineup for the Seattle Mariners on opening night.

Despite battling a calf injury in recent weeks, the 44-year-old future Hall of Famer has made the Mariners’ 25-man roster out of spring training. Not only that, Seattle manager Scott Servais said he will start – albeit in left field as opposed to right, which had become known informally as Area 51 in his honor during his initial 11 1/2-year tenure with the team.

Felix buys into changes ahead of 10th straight opening day start

During a workout at Safeco Field on Thursday, Ichiro saw minimal work in left field and took a full round of batting practice. A late addition to the team in spring training, he played in just two Cactus League games after March 14, when he first experienced soreness in his calf.

With Ichiro making the roster, utility player Taylor Motter was optioned to Triple-A Tacoma.

The one-time MVP and all-time pro baseball hits leader (MLB and Japan combined) signed with the Mariners on March 7 after starting left fielder Ben Gamel suffered an oblique strain.

Here is the full Mariners roster announced ahead of their opening series against Cleveland, which starts at 7:10 p.m. Thursday on 710 ESPN Seattle.

Starting rotation

Felix Hernandez
James Paxton (LHP)
Mike Leake
Marco Gonzales (LHP)


Edwin Diaz (closer)
Juan Nicasio
Nick Vincent
Dan Altavilla
Marc Rzepczynski (LHP)
James Pazos (LHP)
Casey Lawerence
Wade LeBlanc (LHP)


Mike Zunino
Mike Marjama


Ryon Healy (1B)
Robinson Cano (2B)
Jean Segura (SS)
Kyle Seager (3B)
Daniel Vogelbach (1B)
Andrew Romine (Utility)


Mitch Haniger
Dee Gordon
Guillermo Heredia
Nelson Cruz

Disabled list

RHP David Phelps (Tommy John surgery)
Ben Gamel (oblique strain)
Erasmo Ramirez (lat strain)

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