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March 15, 2009 at 10:33 AM

Zduriencik: there “were holes” in 2008 defense

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Why is Ken Griffey Jr. looking extra chipper this morning? He’ll be a DH in today’s game and tomorrow’s as well. His first back-to-back games this spring. The team is even planning to play him in the field later this week, Hmm.
Speaking of defense and how good or bad it can be, I caught up with GM Jack Zduriencik moments ago and asked him about our Friday blog opus on The Fielding Bible author John Dewan and his contention the M’s were an above average defensive squad in 2008.
“I think, regardless of how good we are, whether we are, as he claims, the 13th best club (defensively), I do think we’ve made ourselves better in center field. I do think that, when Endy (Chavez) is out in left field, we’re certainly better defensively in left field. If that’s the case, then good. Then we’ve helped ourselves to move up even higher.”
So, what does Zduriencik really think about the 2008 team’s defense? Was it as good as Dewan says? This is important because the team has based a lot of its off-season strategy on upgrading an aspect of the team that — if Dewan is correct — might have needed the least amount of tinkering.
“I didn’t see it, but from everything I’ve been hearing, there were holes, no question about it,” Zduriencik said.
Hear our conversation right here.
In other news, Cesar Jimenez will pitch in a game tomorrow for the first time all spring. Tyler Johnson will throw a bullpen session tomorrow and pitch in a simulated game on Wednesday. This is important because the M’s are a little short on the lefthanded side in their bullpen. Remember, it’s possible that Ryan Rowland-Smith will begin the year in the starting rotation now that Brandon Morrow is sidelined.
Erik Bedard gets today off and will throw an inning in a game tomorrow.
Roy Corcoran came up with some biceps tendinitis after his last outing and has been eased back a bit. He’ll throw a bullpen session tomorrow.
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Had a chat here today with one of our more prolific blog commenters, Steve Tanemura, known to you all as “The Big Ebu”. Yeah, I thought he’d be a little bigger, too. But he explained to me that it’s his wife’s nickname for him and that he is, in fact, the biggest man in their immediate family. Here’s a shot of him with his son, Tyler, 11.
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