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April 6, 2011 at 10:18 AM

Adam Moore back in for the Mariners for first time since Saturday

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Felix Hernandez throws today’s series finale for the Mariners, looking to salvage a .500 record on this six-game road trip. And the guy catching him will be Adam Moore, who hasn’t appeared in a game since Saturday — when Miguel Olivo pinch-hit for him in the ninth inning.
It became obvious this winter, after Olivo signed a two-year, $7 million deal, that Moore would be relegated to backup duty. There was some though this spring that Moore might see more early playing time after Olivo went down with a groin injury.
But so far, he’s had one start in the first five games. So, I asked Eric Wedge this morning about how he’ll go about evaluating Moore’s development given that he isn’t playing all that often.
“I think we still can.” Wedge said. “There are definite scenarios I’ve dealt with in the past where you can evaluate them. And it’s not so much about evaluating as it is about him getting better and getting comfortable with playing. So that, when he does play, it should be twofold: one, that he becomes more comfortable and familliar with the backup role. But, also continues to make progress to where he can potentially be more than that.
“I think that’s what we’re trying to do. He’s whatever, 27 or 28 years old? I mean, he came in and earned a spot on this ballclub. And once we get into the season, start to get into that rhythm, the grind, I think it’s going to help him.”
Wedge said there are things the team is looking for from Moore off the field as well.
“The interaction with his teammates, particularly the pitchers,” Wedge said. “The interaction with Olivo is important. Just how he handles himself when he doesn’t play, how he handles himself when he does play. The level of preparation has to be even that much better when a guy isn’t playing every day. It’s hard to be a utility player in the big leagues. To go out there and do what Adam Kennedy did last night is not easy. It’s just not easy. That’s one of the reasons he’s on this club. Because he is a veteran, he is a pro. He’s going to be able to handle that. And a lot of that is just where you are mentally and physically when you’re not playing.”

Speaking of the aforementioned Olivo, he had the chance to catch Michael Pineda for the first time last night and came away impressed.
“He looked very good to me,” Olivo said. “He wasn’t afraid to throw pitches and he got everthing together. I was impressed, because when you see a rookie face a team like that, as good as the Rangers, he wasn’t afraid to throw the ball.”
Olivo said Pineda only shook him off a couple of times. Olivo let it go, wanting to see what Pineda was able to do. And when Pineda did change the pitch that was initially called, was able to properly execute with the one he wanted.
“One time I called for a fastball and he wanted to throw a slider and he threw it,” Olivo said. “It was amazing because, as a rookie, you can tell that when he’s got something in mind that he wants to do, he goes out there and he does it.”
The lineups:
RF Ichiro
3B Chone Figgins
LF Milton Bradley
DH Jack Cust
1B Justin Smoak
2B Jack Wilson
SS Brendan Ryan
CF Michael Saunders
C Adam Moore
RHP Felix Hernandez
2B Ian Kinsler
SS Elvis Andrus
CF Josh Hamilton
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Michael Young
RF Nelson Cruz
LF David Murphy
C Yorvit Torrealba
1B Mitch Moreland
LHP C.J. Wilson

Comments | Topics: Brendan Ryan, Chone Figgins


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