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September 12, 2014 at 3:02 PM

Pregame notes and lineups: A’s at Mariners — Dustin Ackley is back in the lineup

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Update 3:56 p.m.

Lloyd McClendon said there are no limitations for Dustin Ackley.

“He’s healthy,” he said. “He’s moving well and feeling good. No restrictions.”

Ackley is hopeful that the ankle will stay healthy for the remainder of the season.

“It’s pretty good,” Ackley said. “It’s progressively gotten better every day since they’ve given me those days off. I’m sure I’m going to experience some soreness tonight, but nothing I haven’t felt before and nothing that will keep me from playing. They said there is no structural damage and I’m just kind of dealing with whatever pain might be in there. I don’t think there will be that much.”

Ackley said the pain isn’t directly related to the bone spurs in the ankle.

“This inflammation in my foot and ankle area,” he said. “They said potentially bone spurs could come back in the future. But as of right now, there really isn’t anything there.”

So the bone spurs didn’t cause the issues?

“I’m sure it didn’t help,” he said. “But it wasn’t the bone spurs that I was feeling. There were kind of two different pains there. It was a different feeling than before. I’ve played with the bone spurs and there wasn’t an issue with that. This was one of those things from playing on it over time and inflammation set in and I started experiencing pain I hadn’t felt before.”

Ackley won’t need to have the bone spurs operated on in the offseason.

“I don’t think it’s an issue,” he said.

Does he have any concern about playing back-to-back days?

“I don’t think so,” he said. “I guess I will have to wait till I wake up the next morning and see how it feels. But as the days have progressed – the last three or four days, I don’t see any reasons why it wouldn’t be better or the same tomorrow.”

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Ackley on the series against the A’s

“This is huge,” he said. “It seems like every series gets bigger and bigger as the year goes on. But this one in particular now that we are only a game or two back from Oakland and about to go on a long road trip – this is huge. I think this one and the time we just played them in Oakland are going to make our season for sure.

McClendon on the significance of the series …

“Yeah, there is,” he said. “But what happens if you get swept, is the season over with? I don’t think so. Is it important series? Yeah you recognize the importance of it. But it’s not the be-all series.”

“This is a job that we’ve done – most of the guys in the locker room – all of our lives,” McClendon said. “Every day, we eat, sleep, drink baseball. They work at their craft every day and you get an opportunity to perform on the highest stage – you don’t get nervous at things you are qualified to do. You get nervous when you don’t know what the hell you are doing. I think our guys are going to have a lot of fun and we’ll see what happens.”

 

****

Many people aren’t happy about Kendrys Morales batting fourth. He had some terrible ABs the other night. His production has been …. meh.

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The 0-for-11 on this homestand hasn’t helped him or the Mariners.

McClendon was asked about keeping Morales batting fourth in between Cano and Seager and if it was based on splitting them up?

“That plays big part of it,” he said. “When you have a switch-hitter in between them that helps quite a bit. Now if we are facing a team that doesn’t have tough lefties in their bullpen, then you can stack your lefties. But this gives us a little better balance.”

 

 

From earlier

So Dustin Ackley is back in the lineup tonight, which is a good thing for the Mariners. Obviously, this is a big series. They are expecting big crowds for all weekend.

Obviously,  I wrote about the attendance for the paper today.

A few things … 

1. I will never criticize or complain about attendance or lack thereof. It’s not my place to say what fans should or shouldn’t do. Being a fan is a personal thing and I’m not one, so I just don’t do it.

2. Part of the reason I also refrain from it is that I don’t pay to go to games. And let’s not kid ourselves – it isn’t cheap to go to games. Sure there are ways to do it on a budget, but really if you want to go to a game and enjoy yourself, you are going to spend at least $100 per person. That’s not a cheap investment. Heck, even spending half of that is a lot. And that’s a major reason why Astros games don’t draw in Seattle or anywhere for that matter.

3. Obviously once school starts, that’s a factor. The games get over late. Some people have said starting them at 6 p.m. It seems like  a good idea, but the traffic issues into the stadium before a 6 p.m. start on a weekday would be a total nightmare.

4. I’ve gotten a myriad of emails and tweets as to reasons why. Some are logical (game times, long games, boring offense, ticket price policies), some are illogical (I believe the Seahawks’ success means little since most people can’t get Hawks tickets anymore) and insane (from an email: “The third is the black rain cloud called Justin Smoak.  Whether he plays or not the guy seems cursed and it infects the whole team.  Any wonder we climbed into it while he was in Tacoma?).

5. But we all know it comes down to winning. Win consistently make the postseason, compete for division titles and then you have fans. But with the consistent losing, it’s not a surprise that people aren’t coming back right away.

 

Mariners game notes ….

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