Not much of a surprise to see Mike Carp in at designated hitter. He left Arizona this morning and arrived here in Chicago early afternoon. Flying across country to play a major league game for the first time in a given year is not quite the same as making minor league road trips and playing, so the M’s did the smart thing and put Carp in at designated hitter.
So, Jack Cust sits. Carlos Peguero gets a deserved start in left field tonight.
And Ichiro plays in right field tonight. My take on that is that Eric Wedge delivered his salvo at the veterans last night. Now, they are on notice. If Ichiro continues to have hitless games with no real improvement, I’d expect him to sit out at any given time. Like tomorrow, the day after, or the day after that. But he’s on notice. That’s been Wedge’s m.o. to-date. He warns people, then takes action.
Chone Figgins is batting ninth. I like him better there than at No. 8 because you combine his speed with Ichiro’s if either of them ever manages to get on. And ninth is where the worst hitter on your team belongs. Right now, until he shows otherwise, Figgins is the worst hitter.
Carp has been on quite the roll in Class AAA, hitting 19 home runs, batting .348 and piling up a 22-game hitting streak that ended last night when he was pulled one at-bat into the game in order to prepare to come up here.
“You can’t control what happens up here, so I was doing what I needed to do down there,” Carp said. “I was hoping I’d get a chance sooner or later. I’m excited to be here.”
And the M’s are excited to see what he can do. He certainly gives them options, as do other younger players.
“Obviously, you’ve got to learn a lot being a young player,” Carp said. “I got called up pretty early, then got sent down, went back and forth — had to learn a lot. It helped me out, I think, by maturing.”