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August 19, 2014 at 12:20 PM

Tuesday’s Pregame notes and lineups: Mariners at Phillies

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Update 4:41 Von Hayes time

Manager Lloyd McClendon said his goal was to play Logan Morrison and Kendrys Morales two out of three games in this series. So he wanted to give Morales a day off after playing first base last night. He’ll start Morales tomorrow against lefty Cole Hamels and sit LoMo.

McClendon was asked about Michael Saunders and his progress in his rehab stint.

“He’s working it out, he’s trying to get back,” McClendon said. “We knew there was going to be rust. That’s why you have a 20-day rehab. He’s trying to get himself ready and get sharp and get back here.”

Saunders’ 20-day rehab stint ends on August 26. Unfortunately for him and the Mariners, the four days of paternity time still count against it. If he’s not really raking, the Mariners could option him to Tacoma for five days and then recall him when rosters expand on Sept. 1. They could also one of their eight relievers to Tacoma for the five days and recall him on the 26th instead.

Asked if Saunders was swinging the bat well in Tacoma, McClendon said, “Not yet he isn’t.”

I wouldn’t expect to see Saunders till the 26th or later. McClendon mentioned the other day how much he has liked Endy Chavez’s performance as a platoon outfielder vs. right-handed pitchers (splits below). He also seems reluctant to give up the extra reliever. But he may be willing to do that for five days.

 

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From earlier

Lots of lefties in the lineup tonight with right-hander AJ Burnett starting for the Phillies. Kendrys Morales and Chris Taylor get the night off. This is one of those times where manager Lloyd McClendon can get Miller a start to keep him somewhat sharp.

Taylor has hit a slower patch of late after living the BAbip dream, which was expected.

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As for Burnett, he doesn’t have great numbers this season. But with his stuff, he’s capable of shutting a team down.

Here’s his career and season splits.

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*

Here’s the Mariners numbers against Burnett

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*****

A few quick links …. per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the Mariners are one of six finalists for free agent outfielder Rusney Castillo. The Mariners relationship with Roc Nation Sports – Cano and Castillo’s agent – is said to be a factor.

Baseball sources have said the conversations between Castillo’s representations and the vying teams has been extensive. But the field if six is supposedly going to be trimmed to two or three in the next two days. Will the Mariners be one of the finalists? Realistically, I think they will get outbid. But money shouldn’t be a factor in putting together a legitimate offer for Castillo. Though the need for him has decreased slightly with the acquisition of Austin Jackson.

I’m guessing it will somewhere near 5-years, $60 million for Castillo.

Also Jayson Stark addresses a major “What-If” …. in “What if Ken Griffey Jr. stayed healthy ….

******

Here’s my weekly Tuesday radio hit with Mitch Levy  on KJR

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