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Mariners blog

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

September 13, 2008 at 4:00 PM

Lineup bombshell; Beltre schedules surgery

OK, maybe not a bombshell, but it’s very interesting news: Jose Lopez is playing first base today. Apparently, it’s something the Mariners have kicked around for awhile, and he’s been working out there for the last couple of days. It gives them a chance to look at Luis Valbuena at second base, but it also provides a chance to evaluate the notion of Lopez as a first-base option down the road — like maybe next year. Lopez will probably play first base frequently the rest of the way.
Riggleman said they’re still viewing Lopez as a second basesman long-term, but you’ve got to wonder if this couldn’t be a viable option for 2009. Valbuena is probably a longshot to be ready for a starting job by next year, but maybe someone else will, be available in the trade or free agent market. There even seems to be some sentiment that Tug Hulett could be a candidate to be a regular second baseman. Considering Lopez’s range issues, it’s something to discuss, at any rate.
I’ll provide some quotes later, after I transcribe them, but I wanted to get this posted.
One other bit of news: Adrian Beltre has decided to have his thumb surgery next Thursday. He’ll play today and tomorrow, and then shut it down for the season. That will give him time to get healthy for spring training, assuming all goes well. It will also provide a nice opportunity for Matt Tuiasosopo to play regularly the final two weeks.
Beltre had some interesting comments about next year that I’ll post soon.

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