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September 1, 2014 at 10:43 AM

Pregame notes and lineups: Mariners at A’s — Seven players added to the roster, Jesus Montero placed on suspended list

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Updated noon

Manager Lloyd McClendon was a busy guy this morning, meeting with all of the players being called up and discussing roles.

He’s said all along that they called up players that he felt like could help him win games. He used the example of James Jones’ two stolen bases in yesterday’s win as an example.

“Jonesy is a unique player. He’s a very talented individual. He’s the type of guy that can steal a base when you know he’s going to steal it. A pitcher could 1.2 (seconds) to the plate and he can still steal second base.

Here’s what he said about a few other call-ups.

On Carson Smith – “He’s a big powerful arm, a lot like the rest of the guys in that bullpen. We can use him early probably against right-handers. I don’t think righties have much fun off of him. That’s why he’s here.”

Smith had been “on hold” for like five days with the Rainiers – meaning they couldn’t pitch him because he was on the verge of being called up. So that gave him some idea that he would be called up today.

On Corey Hart – “He’s swung the bat pretty good down there. We’ll try to get matchups with him too. He’s a veteran guy that knows what he is doing. I’m sure there’s going to be plenty of opportunities for Corey Hart to swing the bat.”

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Taijuan Walker will pitch long relief for the Mariners, but he would likely be the spot starter if needed over Erasmo Ramirez.

“We’ll see,” McClendon said. “Right now he’s going to be more of a long man. Hopefully, he’ll get to the point where he’s so dominating that he’s in the rotation. We’ll see. I don’t know. I had a talk with him today and that’s totally up to him. We’ve all heard the hype and know he’s a very talented individual. But I want to see it on the field. So we’ll see.

Erasmo Ramirez pitched in relief last night for the Rainiers and vultured a win. He will join the team tomorrow and he will pitch out of the bullpen.

James Paxton is here on the 24-hour “taxi squad.” He’ll be recalled tomorrow officially and start tomorrow’s game.

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Normally, McClendon would use Justin Smoak as a defensive replacement late in games. He’s giving him the start over Morrison today. Morrison isn’t hurt. Smoak has put up decent numbers in Tacoma – he was hitting .337 with 13 doubles, seven homers, 40 RBI with a .924 OPS in 56 games with Tacoma.

“He is swinging the bat better,” McClendon said. “He’s in there today because he’s hit this guy. And I’m just going with past history and hopefully he sees him good and gets us a couple of hits.”

Smoak has faced Hammel in one big league game, going 2-for-3 with a double and a walk. Morrison has never faced him.

Here’s the rest of the Mariners numbers vs. Hammel (Smoak isn’t on there because he wasn’t added to active roster till today).

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Michael Saunders will report to Arizona to get his strength back, his timing back.

“We’ll see what happens,” McClendon said.

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From earlier

Greetings from scenic and lovely  O.Co Coliseum. (Italics is thew new sarcasm font.)

It’s September 1 meaning rosters have expanded and anyone on the 40-man roster can be called up to participate in the last month.

First bit of news …. Jesus Montero has been placed on the suspended list and won’t play baseball the rest of the season. This isn’t a big surprise since general manager Jack Zduriencik said as much the other day. But by being on the suspended list, Montero isn’t getting paid for the last month. It also creates a spot on the 40-man roster for the Mariners, which is needed for two of the seven call-ups. They also placed Willie Bloomquist on the 60-day DL to clear another spot. Those two spots are for catcher Humberto Quintero and reliever Carson Smith.

Here’s the seven players called up today.  “Selected” means added to the 40-man roster

  • Corey Hart, DH, returned from rehab assignment with AAA Tacoma and activated from 15-day disabled list
  • Justin Smoak, 1B, recalled from AAA Tacoma
  • Stefen Romero, OF, recalled from AAA Tacoma
  • Taijuan Walker, RHP, recalled from AAA Tacoma
  •  Lucas Luetge, LHP, recalled from AAA Tacoma
  • Humberto Quintero, C, selected from AAA Tacoma
  • Carson Smith, RHP, selected from AAA Tacoma

Now, people might ask/freak out, “well, where is James Paxton?” Well, Paxton and Erasmo Ramirez (not so many people asking about him) can’t be called up till tomorrow since the Rainiers are playing today in Fresno and their season hasn’t officially ended. The 10-day rule for players optioned to the minors pertains until the season is over. Not sure if Ramirez will be called up tomorrow after his recent struggles.

Also, Michael Saunders is still on the disabled list so there was no roster move needed for him.

People asking about postseason eligibility …. basically it’s anyone who is on the 40-man roster as of Aug. 31 …. so here’s the official rule guide from MLB. This is different in past years thanks to changes in the collective bargaining agreement.

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