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Mariners blog

Daily coverage of the Mariners during the season and all year long.

February 24, 2007 at 11:58 AM

What Edgar will tell the Mariners

Followed Edgar Martinez out on to the field at Peoria Stadium today. That’s where they are holding Fan Fest, for fans to collect autographs and watch the Mariners take batting and infield practice. It was quite the experience walking just behind Martinez into the stadium from a rear entrance in the right field corner. As we approached the gate, some fans leaning on a fence in the bleachers nudged themsevles.
“Hey, Mom, is that Edgar?” a young fan asked his mother.
“Edgar, we miss you!” a woman called out.
That was before even entering the stadium. Once we did, we saw several members of the San Diego Padres — staging their own Fan Fest in a complex they share with Seattle — signing autographs along the right field line. But they were soon competing for the fans’ attention with Martinez.
“Edgar! Edgar!” they cried out.
Three years since he retired, Martinez still has star power. The Mariners will be counting on him making such an impression on their hitters — especially the young ones — when he addresses them at noon tomorrow.
“It’s going to be mainly about approach,” he said. “How I used to get ready for the games. The preparation, situations. My timing in different situations. And techniques. At some point, we’ll probably talk about techniques.”
Martinez said he’d wanted to get down here in previous springs but simply had no time. He squeezed in a weekend this time “to get involved on a limited basis.” But he has no plans to coach just yet, being too involved in his day job as CEO of a Redmond-based logo design company.
These spring days are the types veteran managers love to hate because little in the way of concrete work gets done. Manager Mike Hargrove smiled his way through the early part of Fan Fest workouts, though, watching Adrian Beltre, Raul Ibanez, Ichiro and Jose Vidro launch home runs for the appreciative crowds. The more serious work will come tomorrow, especially when second baseman Jose Lopez starts taking ground balls.

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