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June 3, 2012 at 10:08 AM

Chone Figgins starts, plus other lineup changes for Mariners against tough lefty

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The Mariners aren’t taking batting practice this morning, as you can see in the photo above. Neither team needed it today after yesterday’s 10-8 slugfest that saw Seattle prevail in 12 innings.
We’ll have an interesting Mariners lineup out there today against southpaw Chris Sale, one of the hottest pitchers in baseball at present.
“We’re facing an interesting guy,” Mariners manager Eric Wedge said. “The guy’s throwing it about as good as you can throw it.”
Sale struck out 15 his last time out against Tampa Bay. His fastball was clocked up to 97 mph and several of his pitches routinely came in at 95 mph. That’s from a 6-foot-6 lefty. His slider is also very tough and comes in at a difficult angle.
So, Wedge is trying to push his lefties further back in the order today.


That’s why switch-hitter Chone Figgins is playing left field and batting second, where he’ll face Sale from the right side. Figgins had a key RBI single in the 12th inning yesterday and has been driving the ball well now that he’s playing at least sporadically again.
Jesus Montero moves up to the No. 3 spot in the order and is back behind the plate after a few days away.
Justin Smoak, another switch-hitter, is batting cleanup, while the left-handed hitting Dustin Ackley is moved back to No. 5. Wedge confirmed that the Sckley move is only temporary and related to Sale having a tough slider that gives lefties fits.
No Kyle Seager today. Instead, the right-handed-hitting Alex Liddi will play third base.
The lineups:
MARINERS
RF Ichiro
LF Chone Figgins
C Jesus Montero
1B Justin Smoak
2B Dustin Ackley
DH Miguel Olivo
CF Michael Saunders
3B Alex Liddi
SS Brendan Ryan
RHP Kevin Millwood
WHITE SOX
CF Brent Lillibridge
2B Gordon Beckham
1B Adam Dunn
DH Dayan Viciedo
RF Alex Rios
LF Kosuke Fukodome
SS Alexei Ramirez
C Tyler Flowers
3B Eduardo Escobar
LHP Chris Sale

Comments | Topics: Brendan Ryan, Chone Figgins, Jesus Montero

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