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April 2, 2011 at 3:50 PM

Jack Wilson OK, in lineup for Mariners after absorbing takeout slide last night

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Thought I’d give you a glimpse of the official Major League Baseball statistics package that awaited our arrival here at the Coliseum in Oakland. Specifically, the AL West standings one day in. Looks nice, doesn’t it?
Anyhow, one of the first players I spoke to was second baseman Jack Wilson , who got nailed in both ankles by the takeout slide of David DeJesus last night during an attempted double-play. Wilson is in the lineup tonight, moved up to seventh in the batting order against left-hander Brett Anderson.
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You could tell Wilson was in a little pain right after the slide and I worried about not seeing him in there today. Turns out, I was wrong. He told me he barely felt anything and is fine now.
“That’s baseball,” he said, with a shrug.
Wilson did say that the slide had nothing to do with him learning a new position and that just about any second baseman in the game would have been taken out by DeJesus.
“He’s pretty fast,” Wilson said. “I thought I’d have time to get out of the way, but he’s fast and he got me.”
Wilson added that he’d only been hit about two or three times in all of his years playing shortstop.
“It’s easier there because they’re coming at you from the front,” he said. “When you’re at second base, they’re coming at your blind spot when you’re making the pivot. Sometimes you can get out of the way, sometimes you can’t. It’s something I’m just going to have to get used to.”
Caught up with Justin Smoak, fresh off that double he cranked to the gap in left-center last night against left-hander Craig Breslow. Smoak didn’t do very well batting from the right side — his natural position — last season.

Smoak posted a lowly .271 on-base percentage against left-handers, compared to .321 versus righties last season. Neither total is all that great, but for a reputed on-base machine, anything below .300 as a split just won’t do.
“I think the big thing was just getting to a point where I felt comfortable hitting from the right side,” Smoak said. “I started to feel that way in spring training towards the end, so I was just hoping to keep doing it now.”
That carry over did indeed happen last night. Let’s see how he does versus Anderson tonight.
Last year, Anderson owned the Mariners, going 3-1 with an 0.81 ERA against them in five starts that saw him go 33 1/3 combined innings. It was the second lowest ERA ever compiled against Seattle in one season by a starter with at least four starts, eclipsed only by the 0.58 ERA of John Lackey a few years back.
Anderson is 5-3 with an impressive 2.01 ERA lifetime against the Mariners in 10 career starts. He just beats up on the Mariners in Seattle, going 1-2 with a 1.13 ERA in five starts there, compared to 4-1 with a 2.93 ERA in five starts here in Oakland.
Any way you break it up, he’s been pretty good.
Smoak, by the way, is one of the league leaders in the odd statistic of carry-over hitting streaks from last year. With his hit last night, he’s now hit in 11 consecutive games counting last season.
He is one of just three major leaguers with a double-digit carry-over streak at present, joining Mark Ellis (12 games) and Mike Stanton (12 games).
“I didn’t even know about it until you just told me,” Smoak said with a laugh.
He won’t be laughing when the streak ends now that I’ve jinxed him. Time to find a hiding spot.
The lineups:
RF Ichiro
3B Chone Figgins
LF Milton Bradley
DH Jack Cust
1B Justin Smoak
SS Brendan Ryan
2b Jack Wilson
CF Michael Saunders
C Adam Moore
LHP Jason Vargas
CF Coco Crisp
1B Daric Barton
RF David DeJesus
LF Josh Willingham
DH Hideki Matsui
C Kurt Suzuki
2B Mark Ellis
3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
SS Cliff Pennington
LHP Brett Anderson

Comments | Topics: Brendan Ryan, Chone Figgins


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