As you can say, there are some ominous clouds overhead. I’ve decided to stop playing amateur weatherman and will just sit back and see what happens. They’re still hoping to start this game on time. In the meantime, manager Eric Wedge just convened a meeting of the team to inform them of the Mariners’ All-Star selections, which he said is one of his favorite moments of the year.
“It never gets old,” he said. “It’s a neat thing, always has been, always will be. It’s such a special honor.”
The rest of us will find out beginning at 3 p.m. Seattle time during the selection show on MLB network –right in the middle of this game, assuming it starts on time. Here are my thoughts on the matter. I’m pretty sure Felix Hernandez is going to make it; the question is whether Hisashi Iwakuma will, too.
Wedge elaborated on his comment yesterday about Nick Franklin needing to stay in the game last night despite being hobbled by the foul ball off his right kneecap. Clearly, the manager viewed it as a test of the rookie’s toughness, and he passed. Why was that so important to Wedge?
“Because it’s going to be part of it,” he said. “If you’re going to be an every day guy, you’ve got to play through things like that. It’s just part of it. When you play every day, and you get nicked and a little banged up from time to time, you’ve got to play through it.”
Wedge thinks Franklin may be available in a pinch today, but said, “He’s still banged up. He had a pretty significant limp coming in this morning.”
The leg is pretty stiff and swollen, Franklin said.
“I’m working on getting the swelling down as much as possible and as quickly as possible,” he said. “Hopefully, I can be on the field soon. It’s been stiff since last night. It’s the fact that it remains swollen and just the wear and tear on it. It’s just one of those things I have to do treatment on it and hopefully it gets better with time.”
Considering he had a homer his first time up and has had a productive first month in the majors, Franklin is not happy about missing time.
“I am very frustrated, yeah,” he said. “This is the first time it’s ever actually happened to me, on a bunt especially. Out of all things, it’s a bunt off the knee. You don’t really expect it to do anything.”
With Franklin out, Brad Miller slides over from shortstop to second, and Brendan Ryan starts at shortstop. Miller is the Mariners’ most versatile infielder right now, with the ability to also play third base if Kyle Seager needs a rest. He saw action at all three spots in spring training.
“He’ll play anywhere. Second, short, third,” Wedge said. “That’s why we did what we did all spring, to give him that exposure.”