Update 4:58 p.m.
Michael Saunders is here working out. He won’t be joining the Rainiers are on the scenic trip to El Paso. He’ll be activated off the DL on Friday. Looks like Smoak and Hart will make that trip south still.
Update 3:51 p.m.
The Mariners did make a roster move. They optioned pitcher Erasmo Ramirez to Class AAA Tacoma. They recalled right-hander Brandon Maurer to take his spot on the 40-man roster. Maurer is not going into the rotation. Since being sent down the last time, he has been pitching in the bullpen as a reliever. He will do the same with the Mariners for the next few days. And then when it gets to Ramirez’s turn in the rotation, they will presumably recall Taijuan Walker from Tacoma to make that start.
“That move is pending,” McClendon said. “I don’t have it right now.”
Here are Maurer’s numbers since being sent down and moving to the bullpen.
“It gives him less chance to think about things,” McClendon said. “His velocity is up at the Triple A level. He’s up to 98. So that’s intriguing.”
The bullpen was worked over heavily in Ramirez’s start yesterday and his starts in the past. Calling up Maurer will give McClendon another option, either in short or long relief.
“Pitching is our rock, our foundation,” McClendon said. “We have an opportunity to protect it over the next four or five days. It just makes sense.”
As for the upcoming roster moves … McClendon said he wants to make sure they are 100 percent healthy and that they are sharp when the the return.
With the Rainiers in El Paso, which is apparently close to Houston, the Mariners can send Smoak with the Rainiers and then bring him back next week pretty easily. It seems likely that Saunders will be activated on Friday though. Hart is still several games away from being ready.
Here’s the M’s numbers vs. Clay Bucholz
Here’s the Red Sox numbers vs. Iwakuma
First baseman Justin Smoak is eligible to come off the disabled list today. But according to sources, the Mariners might make a roster move today. The Rainiers have an off day and then play in El Paso on Thursday. It appears unlikely that Smoak or Michael Saunders will join the Rainiers. Saunders is eligible to come off the DL on Thursday. The expectation is that the roster move will be made Friday.
Jeff Sullivan of Fangraphs and now Fox sports wrote this piece, examining Robinson Cano’s power numbers. There’s a lot of charts and numbers and I’m not going to profess to understanding every one of them. The information is interesting.
I do think this. Cano is smart enough to understand what works what doesn’t work at Safeco Field and places like Oakland and Anaheim. Fly balls don’t work here.. And even if pitchers may be throwing more fastballs to him, the idea of actually driving those pitches out is not a guarantee on cold nights with the marine layer thick. Look at Logan Morrison’s ball last night. The air got cold and the ball stopped carrying after about the sixth inning.
So trying to force a fastball over the fence with a flyball is not as productive as trying to hit hard line drives. Also when you are playing in Yankee Stadium and the AL East (Fenway, Camden, Rogers Centre, even Toronto), you can take more chances to try and pull fly balls on pitches that might not exactly be pull worthy because you could still be rewarded.
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