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June 28, 2009 at 11:55 AM

Wakamatsu mulls life after Beltre

Adrian Beltre is in the lineup one last time today, but they will have to face the next six to eight weeks — at least — without him.
“We’ll miss him dearly, and we wish him the best of luck,” manager Don Wakamatsu said.
Wakamatsu gave same insight into what comes next:

  • He said he wants to use Ken Griffey Jr. more in the field, if his knee holds up, which he said would allow him to get more at-bats for Mike Sweeney at DH.
  • As far as third base, it looks like Chris Woodward and Jose Lopez are his prime options. He’s leaning against moving Russell Branyan to third, and when I asked him if anyone in the minor leagues was under consideration, he said, “Not right now.” So, no Mike Morse, apparently.
    As for Matt Tuiasosopo, he’s still rehabbing an elbow injury and is not in their immeidate plans. Tuiasosopo played just eight games this season — all at DH — before undergoing elbow surgery. “He’s still a ways away,” Wakamatsu said.
    Here’s more from Wakamatsu:
    “You have to look at all your options. When Adrian is gone after today, we have to look at everything. We ponder a lot of different things, whether it’s Lopey at third base, whether it’s moving Russell over there. I’m leaning more toward keeping Russell at first base and let him continue to have the year he’s having. And fill third with maybe Lopez or Woody, or see what other options we have.”
    Wakamatsu said he was impressed with Woodward’s play at third base the other day when he got a start.
    “I thought he made somoe great plays. Do you move Lopey out of position, and put Woody at second? I think right now, if Adrian couldn’t have gone today, I would have gone with Woody at third base.”:

  • Branyan will probably move to the third spot in the batting order.
    “We’ve talked about that, even coming into this series, before Adrian made that decision,” Wakamatsu said. “I think that’s a strong possibiliity we might juggle that a little and move Russell to the three hole. We’ll see.”
    As for who would take over at the two spot, he said, “That depends on what we do with Lopey. Do you put Lopey up there? Maybe Woodward starts swinging the bat like he did when he first came up, and he becomes the two-hole hitter. We’ll see.”
    The bottom line on all this? It’s all up in the air right now. “I think a lot is going to depend on how people play,” Wakamatsu said.

  • Whether they call up a position player or pitcher depends on the health of the bullpen. Sean White was unavailable yesterday (Wakamatsu said he was tender, but I don’t have any more details). He’s available today.
    .
    “If we have anyone beat up in that bullpen, we’ll probably have to go down and get another pitcher,” he said.

  • Comments | Topics: Chris Woodward

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