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Most of the interesting new additions by the Mariners this winter came in the outfield. So, I’ve got some video for you to see of this morning’s first full-squad workout by the team and it naturally features the outfielders. You can see Michael Morse, Raul Ibanez, Jason Bay and others working on the fielding of ground balls in the first segment.
Later, there are shots of Morse, Ibanez and Kendrys Morales taking batting practice. Morse had the best drive of the day, a towering shot over the batter’s eye in dead center. I did not get footage of that, but did capture a few of the bombs hit by various guy. The last part of the footage shows Morse getting work in at third base. Remember, the Mariners are only planning to carry one full-time backup infielder in Robert Andino this year. After that, Morse will be used at third base and Kyle Seager at shortstop if Andino is otherwise occupied and some pinch-hitters/pinch-runners are required late.
For Morales, this spring will provide a test of how ready he is to man first base on a regular basis. Remember, this is his first fully-healthy spring since he broke his leg in 2010.
“I feel good,” he said, through an interpreter. “I’m working to strengthen my ankle and as of right now, I feel pretty good.”
His goal for the spring is to be ready to play first base and show the team he can handle the job. This time last year, he wasn’t healthy enough to do that.
“I have to be the one to be ready,” he said. “I’m ready and there’s still time to decide where I’m going to play.”
Morales knows a handful of Mariners from chatting with them around the batting cages over the years as an opponent. He filmed a television commerical with Felix Hernandez for the EA Sports video game company a few years back.
“I had a real good time doing that comercial,” he said. “I believe that Felix is the best pitcher that there is. With all due respect to the other pitchers.”