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March 28, 2011 at 12:58 PM

Josh Wilson says he was told Mariners are keeping infielder Luis Rodriguez

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The Mariners just announced they have added infielder Adam Kennedy (photo above) to the 40-man roster, as expected.
Turns out we weren’t the only ones a bit floored by today’s news that Josh Wilson had been let go by the Mariners. Wilson, who kidded me about this morning’s blog post being “way off” on him making the club, said he was absolutely blindsided by the team’s decision to release him.
Wilson has until Wednesday morning to clear waivers and then becomes a free agent. He said he’s open to possibly returning to the M’s if he does clear, but will keep his options open and take his time looking at things.
When I asked him whether he has any idea what the team’s plans are for the extra bench spot, Wilson said he was told it’s going to Luis Rodriguez.
“They said they were keeping Luis, that’s what they told me,” he said.
Wilson said it was only in the past few days that he felt reasonably comfortable he’d make the team. After Matt Tuiasosopo was cut, he said, a bunch of teammates were coming up and congratulating him.
“I kept telling them ‘Hey, nobody’s said a thing to me’,” he said. “If you’d told me last week that I’d made the team, I would have said ‘Nah, I don’t think so’ because I honestly thought they were going to go with Tui. Because he can play the corners and the outfield and they see him as having a bigger bat. But two days ago, after Tui got sent down, if you’d told me I was going to be released, I’d have thought you were crazy.”
Then, there was today, when Chris Gimenez was sent down. Wilson headed out to the field to partake in bunt coverage drills, feeling he was on the team. Partway through, the Mariners called him inside and delivered the news.


Wilson wasn’t about to analyze the reasons why the team picked Rodriguez over him, or why the club waited until a few days before the season begins to make this move.
We’ve already discussed how hitting coach Chris Chambliss worked with Rodriguez in Class AAA Charlotte last year. Rodriguez is also a switch-hitter, so he gives the team a little more versatility there.
As for Wilson, he’ll wait to see whether he gets picked up on waivers. If he doesn’t, he’ll carefully explore alternatives.
“I’ve spoken to my agent already and it looks like there could be some opportunities,” he said. “But I’ll have to wait until Wednesday to see what happens.”

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