Here are today’s lineups as the Mariners try to avoid a three-game sweep. White Sox pitchers are 6-2 with a 1.22 ERA in their last eight games at Safeco Field. They’ve held the Mariners to three runs or fewer in all of them, including three shutouts. One of those shutouts was a three-hitter last night by John Danks.
51 Ichiro Suzuki (L) RF
21 Franklin Gutierrez CF
13 Dustin Ackley (L) 2B
33 Casper Wells DH
4 Adam Kennedy (L) 1B
26 Brendan Ryan SS
15 Kyle Seager (L) 3B
3 Josh Bard (S) C
12 Trayvon Robinson (S) LF
38 Jason Vargas LHP
White Sox (65-65)
1 Juan Pierre (L) LF
18 Brent Lillibridge 1B
14 Paul Konerko DH
51 Alex Rios CF
10 Alexei Ramirez SS
24 Dayan Viciedo RF
17 Tyler Flowers C
22 Brent Morel 3B
15 Gordon Beckham 2B
34 Gavin Floyd RHP
When I left Cleveland, the Mariners were hitting the ball like crazy and had scored 21 runs in back-to-back games. I hand the baton to Geoff, and suddenly the M’s can’t score — two total runs in two losses to the White Sox. I guess he’s just a jinx.
Mike Carp, who has played every day since he came up on July 19, gets a day off today, and he’s a guy who looks like he could use one. Over his last 10 games, Carp is hitting .167 (7-for-42).
“It’s time for a rest,” manager Eric Wedge said. “He’s done a heck of a job. With (Dustin) Ackley and Carp in the 3-4 – and I’m not sure they’ll end up there or not – they’ve been our most consistent in the 3-4, and obviously they’ve stayed there for awhile. I think with Mike, he’s played more first base than we ever thought he would, more than he ever thought he would. He’s played every day and done a fantastic job. No different than Ackley a while back, we need to give him a day. I think today’s a good day to do it. The day game after a night game.
Kyle Seager is hitting seventh today. He’s had stints hitting sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth. Wedge said it’s too early to tell what his optimal spot will be.
“I think with a lot of these guys, it’s still too early to tell,” he said. “He’s still getting his feel for this level, and we’re still getting our feel for him at this level. You have to allow him struggle to get it going, have some success, have the league make some adjustments against him, and see how they react to it. We’re still in the middle of all that.”
Wedge said that’s true for all rookies, but “sometimes there’s a special one that comes along. For the most part, that’s the way it is.”:
Do the Mariners have a special one?
“We might, he said with a smile, declining to name him.
Casper Wells is now 4-for-23 (.174) with 10 strikeouts in six games since getting hit in the face by Brandon Morrow, but Wedge doesn’t think there’s any carry over.
“He’s a gamer. He gets after it, he gets in there. That’s why I wanted to get him right back in there today. He had a tough night last night. He’s in there ready to hit, he’s in there looking to do some damage. I want to continue to watch him play.”
As for Ichiro, he’s hit in 10 straight games, the 41st hitting streak of 10 or more games in his career.
“He’s put together so many different hitting streaks over his career, and even this year he’s had a couple,” Wedge said. “I do think he’s been a little bit more aggressive. Sometimes that works for him, or it works against him. When he does a good job of maybe not expanding the zone as much as he does from time to time and he’s aggressive, it pays off for him. When he’s overly aggressive and he expands the zone too much, then it doesn’t.”
Justin Smoak (broken nose) and Chone Figgins (hip flexor) were running under the supervision of trainer Rick Griffin before the game. Smoak is scheduled to join Tacoma tomorrow on a rehab assignment, while Figgins may follow mid-week.