Ichiro makes Mariners’ opening night roster, will start in LF
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.
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.
This swing has produced a fair number of hits in this building. pic.twitter.com/cAT5hCgUR8
— Brent Stecker (@BrentStecker) March 28, 2018
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.
James Paxton (LHP)
Marco Gonzales (LHP)
Edwin Diaz (closer)
Marc Rzepczynski (LHP)
James Pazos (LHP)
Wade LeBlanc (LHP)
Ryon Healy (1B)
Robinson Cano (2B)
Jean Segura (SS)
Kyle Seager (3B)
Daniel Vogelbach (1B)
Andrew Romine (Utility)
RHP David Phelps (Tommy John surgery)
Ben Gamel (oblique strain)
Erasmo Ramirez (lat strain)