June 16, 2009 at 5:39 PM
More pre-game notes: Bedard is fine, and other news
To CWB54, who wondered what my record is doing the Mariners’ blog: I am now working on a six-game road losing streak. I did the Texas series in Arlington and the Rockies’ series in Denver — six of the ugliest Mariners’ games all year. Once Don Wakamatsu makes the connection, I’m going to be banned from the clubhouse. Remember, mum’s the word.
Shawn Kelley (strained left oblique) had his second successful bullpen session, throwing 35 pitches with no problems.
Rob Johnson, who is on bereavement leave, attended the funeral of his mother-in-law in Texas today. Wakamatsu said he doesn’t know when Johnson will return to the team. “He’ll let us know,” he said.
On another sad note, Russell Branyan’s grandfather died, and Branyan will probably miss Thursday’s game in San Diego to attend the funeral. If so, he would return to play in Friday’s game in Seattle and only miss that one game.
Kenji Johjima (broken toe) joined the team from Seattle, and underwent hitting and running drills.
Well, all those arm gyrations by Erik Bedard apparently weren’t bad news. Maybe he was showing the trainers how limber he was. He threw for eight minutes, and Wakamatsu said it went well. He has a bullpen session tomorrow, and if that goes well, he’s on for Saturday’s start against the Diamondbacks at Safeco Field. And Jarrod Washburn is on for Friday’s start against Arizona. Washburn’s back felt much better, “but he says his left toe bothers him from walking funny,” Wakamatsu said. He was kidding, I think.
“He feels no pain,” Wakamatsu said.
The plan is for Johjima to go to Tacoma for a minimum of three games before he is activated.
“He has to prove to us he can catch all nine innings,” Wakamatsu said. “I don’t want to have a two-catcher scenario where we have to pull him in the fifth inning because his toe is sore.”
Said Johjima: “There’s no pain anymore. Squatting is no problem, hitting no problem.”
Here’s Wakamatsu on Dustin Ackley, who went 5-for-6 in a College World Series game on Tuesday: “I’ve been impressed, I saw couple of highlight hits. Even before the draft, I had a chance to look at his tape. What probably impressed me more than anything, he attacks; he gets in the hitting position ready to hit. His ability to hit to all fields, and maybe more so, his interviews. He seems like a mature, sharp kid.”
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