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May 30, 2014 at 12:07 PM

Mariners minor league report, May 30 — Chris Taylor progressing from broken pinky finger

Shortstop Chris Taylor is slowly recovering from a broken pinky finger he suffered on May 19 while sliding into second base on a stolen base attempt.

“It’s doing good,” he said. “It’s coming along. It’s been frustrating to sit out.”

Taylor took dry swings (not at pitches) with the bat on Thursday for the first time since the injury. He’s been able to play catch and take ground balls the last three or four days.

So when is he coming back to action? The hope was three to four weeks at the most.

“They haven’t a given me an exact date,” he said.

Taylor will go with the Rainiers on the four-game road trip to safe and scenic El Paso on Saturday to continue working out as best he can.

“When we get back I see the hand specialist to see how it’s healing,” he said.

The fracture wasn’t major. It was a small crack, but it’s keeping him off the field.

“That’s probably the most frustrating part – something as small as a slight fracture in a pinky,” he said. “But you use your hands for so many things. I’m just trying take advantage of the time off.”

Taylor said he’s been able to continue lifting weights and building strength. He’s also added back some of the weight he’s lost during spring training and the start of the season.

“It’s good to have my legs feeling strong,” he said. “I’ve been doing base running, agility work, arm exercises and now I’m able to field ground balls.”

There is no pain in the hand or pinky finger area.

“More than anything it’s probably just weak,” he said. “Not quite as strong as it was. And I will have to get that back.”

Had he not gotten hurt, there’s a good chance that Taylor would be on the Mariners right now with the struggles of Brad Miller. Taylor won’t let himself think about the missed opportunity.

“No I really haven’t,” he said. “I’m just thinking about getting healthy. I can’t think about the what-ifs. I don’t worry about what I can’t control.”

As for head first slides in the future, Taylor kind of laughed.

“I’m probably going to be feet first,” he said. “And it’s not the first time I hurt my fingers. My pinky just caught the corner of the bag. I just thought I jammed it. I played the rest of the game. The next day we got an x-ray just to be sure and there was the slight fracture.”

Class AAA Tacoma

The Rainiers snapped a five-game losing streak at Cheney Stadium. I actually went to the game. Erasmo Ramirez looked like Erasmo Ramirez – not great, not terrible, some command issues with two strikes. Logan Morrison had two hits and stole a base. He played first base last night. He was moving pretty well. I would be surprised to see him in the next few days.

Class AA Jackson

The Generals split a doubleheader with Mobile. They lost the first game 2-1. Patrick Kivlehan drove in their only run of the game. Victor Sanchez pitched four innings, giving up two runs on nine hits with walk and three strikeouts. Jackson won the nightcap, 4-1. Kivelhan belted a three-run homer. Trevor Miller had a good start, going six innings and giving up one unearned run on two hits with a four walks and three strikeouts.

Class A High Desert

The Mavericks lost 10-8 to Rancho Cucamonga. DJ Peterson had two hits in the loss. Starter Min-Sih Chen lasted just 3 2/3 innings, giving up eight runs on six hits with three walks and two strikeouts.

Class A Clinton

The LumberKings rolled to a 5-0 win over Kane County. Starter Jose Flores and right-hander Rafael Pineda combined for the shutout. Flores pitched six inning, giving up six hits, walking one and striking out four. Pineda pitched three innings, allowing three hits and striking out two. Offensively, Zach Shank drove in two runs. Clinton had just four hits in the game.


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