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June 26, 2011 at 5:13 PM

Will Michael Pineda pitch for Mariners if they’re contending in September? You bet

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Just a reminder that Geoff Baker Live! will be coming up at 6:10 p.m. PT live from FX McRory’s in Pioneer Square
Some rare Sunday night baseball in Seattle and we had mnaager Eric Wedge down on the field just a few moments ago. Some of us figured it was time to press him a bit on how he keeps his rotation fresh as we move deeper into the season.
This could be come a prime issue for the M’s should they contend beyond July. It’s not just rookie Michael Pineda that Wedge must worry about, but also Erik Bedard, Doug Fister and Jason Vargas.
Bedard is coming off a nearly two-year layoff from injury, while Vargas faded down the stretch last year and Fister became fatigued in his arm partway through the 2010 season.
“We’ve done a couple of different scenarios with guys all the way through,” Wedge said of the schedule he and pitching coach Carl Willis have devised. “To certain junctures and whatnot. We think we’re just going to stay online with everything and then, when we work the off-days, guys are just going to get an extra day.”
Sounds good. But what about Pineda? Naturally, many of you out there are wondering how he can continue to pile up innings and still pitch in September for a contending club.

“We’ve mapped that out,” he said. “We’ve mapped that out in several different ways. Nothing that I’m going to throw out there to you, but we’ve mapped it out.
“And not just him. A few of these other guys too, if we stay on this course. Now, obviously Michael sticks out more so than the other guys being in his first full season. But a few of these other guys, too. Bedard, it’s been a while since he’s done it. Obviously, Vargas was built up last year and he keeps piling up innings. Fister will be going longer than he ever has.
“But we’ve played it out and I think we’re going to be able to manage it. If it gets to the point to where it gets a little tight at the end, it’s going to be for a good reason.
“But I think what we’ve been really trying to do is really manage his game-to-game pitch count. We’ve been really monitoring his inning-to-inning pitch count. Which, in my opinion, and I think most people will agree with me, where you really extend yourself is when you go out there and really push through an inning. And you get deep into an inning, that’s when fatigue sets in and you’re reaching back. That’s when you’ve got to be careful.
“We’ve tried to pull him back a few times. I think we’ve been managing it pretty well up to this point so we’ll just stay on top of it. But we have projected it out in several different ways and we’ll see how it plays out.”
The lineups:
Mariners (38-39)
51 Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
26 Brendan Ryan SS
4 Adam Kennedy (L) 3B
17 Justin Smoak (S) 1B
13 Dustin Ackley (L) 2B
30 Miguel Olivo C
8 Carlos Peguero (L) LF
21 Franklin Gutierrez CF
58 Doug Fister RHP
Marlins (34-43)
1 Emilio Bonifacio (S) LF
13 Omar Infante 2B
15 Gaby Sanchez 1B
2 Hanley Ramirez SS
29 Greg Dobbs (L) 3B
27 Mike Stanton RF
10 Dewayne Wise (L) CF
9 Brett Hayes C
19 Anibal Sanchez RHP

Comments | Topics: Brendan Ryan


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