Cactus League Game Thread, 3/14/2010

Jay Yencich · March 14, 2010 at 12:13 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Scenic Tucson! I remember the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum being pretty neat when I was nine. It may still be neat now. Those crazy javelinas…

Anyway, Tucson is not much of a place to go for baseball these days. The Sidewinders moved out to Reno and became the Aces, and now the Golden League-affiliated Tucson Toros are at Hi Corbett when the Rockies aren’t using it for their purposes. The White Sox moved to Glendale with the Dodgers last spring, and the Reds and Indians opted for Goodyear when they moved their facilities west. It’s getting lonely down there.

Other news bits kicking around:
* Kirby Arnold: The M’s have been toying around with giving Shawn Kelley extended outings to boost his versatility in camp. Could he start? They don’t know. They haven’t officially talked to him about it and he hasn’t done it since college. That’s at least one square on your spring training bingo card.
* Larry LaRue: Dan Wilson takes time out to work with M’s minor league catchers. No suggestions that they perhaps take up hockey.
* Jerry Brewer: Franklin Gutierrez gets playing time, respect, security, dumb nickname.

Lineup:
CF Byrnes
SS Josh Wilson
LF Bradley
1B Garko
3B Tuiasosopo
RF Langerhans
C Moore
2B Woodward

Even though it’s only spring training, Happy Felix Day to one and all.

Comments

29 Responses to “Cactus League Game Thread, 3/14/2010”

  1. Paul B on March 14th, 2010 1:12 pm

    Back in the 80′s the Indians had Spring Training at Hi Corbett. They were the only team that trained in Tucson, and this was before they moved to Florida. Back then there were only about 10 teams in Arizona (or fewer, I don’t recall exactly) and the Mariners were in Tempe.

    Back then, the Padres trained in Yuma, and the Angels played the last week or more of spring training in Palm Springs.

    But now everyone wants to train near Phoenix so they don’t have to take road trips.

  2. scott19 on March 14th, 2010 1:15 pm

    And, in the case of the D-backs, I never could understand why they bothered to go to Tucson when they could just train at Chase Field to begin with.

  3. Avery Bowron on March 14th, 2010 1:36 pm

    And, in the case of the D-backs, I never could understand why they bothered to go to Tucson when they could just train at Chase Field to begin with.

    I suspect it has to do with the higher number of players and the need for multiple playing fields that are a part of spring training.

  4. pdb on March 14th, 2010 1:38 pm

    This is in fact the last year for Spring Training in Tucson – the White Sox’ move triggered escape clauses for the Diamondbacks and the Rockies, so after this year they’re all going to be in Phoenix.

  5. Paul B on March 14th, 2010 1:42 pm

    I heard that Tucson was courting 3 Japanese teams, to see if they could get them to have their spring training there. The Diamondbacks supposedly said they would come back to Tucson to play them if that happened.

    It’s too bad, in a way, that the teams are leaving. I like Tucson. I’d rather spend a week of vacation during Spring Training in Tucson than in Phoenix.

  6. Philly M's fan on March 14th, 2010 2:05 pm

    I heard from an Indians buddy of mine that the Indians GM didn’t want to part with Ben Francisco in the deal, so he gave us Gutierrez instead? Any truth to this? If it is what a huge steal. I know the M’s wanted Gutierrez all along so we played them like a fiddle.

  7. scott19 on March 14th, 2010 2:05 pm

    Too funny…when Rizzs just mentioned that Felix hit that grand slam off of Johan Santana a couple of years back using Jose Vidro’s bat, Niehaus replied, “I think he may have gotten more hits than Vidro with that bat!” :)

  8. dtw on March 14th, 2010 2:09 pm

    I was a grad student at the UofA in the early ’60s, and it was great fun to go out to Hi Corbett to watch the Indians in spring training. I especially remember seeing Gary Bell, who was from my hometown (San Antonio), and about my age, as well as the young “Sudden Sam” McDowell.

    Later in the spring, the UofA Wildcats would play their night games there. I’m sure I would have done a lot better in grad school if I hadn’t enjoyed baseball so much!

  9. scott19 on March 14th, 2010 2:18 pm

    Well, I see Miguel Olivo is with the Rox these days…

    He may actually be able to crank his BA back up to around the .260 mark playing at altitude this year.

  10. msb on March 14th, 2010 2:38 pm

    I always meant to do the Tucson games trip, but by the time I get to ST again, there won’t be that built in excuse…

  11. joser on March 14th, 2010 2:45 pm

    I suspect it has to do with the higher number of players and the need for multiple playing fields that are a part of spring training.

    Exactly. They’d have to build another four or five fields and other facilities around Chase to accommodate spring training… and where are they going to find space to do that?

    As the MLB article about Tucson wooing the Japanese teams notes, Tucson Electric Park had 12 fields just for the Spring Training needs of the D-backs and White Sox.

  12. msb on March 14th, 2010 2:48 pm

    Speaking of Tucson, Divish is blogging a play-by-play entry, with photos and mentions the Japan rumor

  13. John D. on March 14th, 2010 3:59 pm

    I heard from an Indians buddy of mine that the Indians GM didn’t want to part with Ben Francisco in the deal, so he gave us Gutierrez instead? Any truth to this? If it is what a huge steal. I know the M’s wanted Gutierrez all along so we played them like a fiddle.

    Reminds me of one of the stories surrounding the HEATHCLIFF SLOCUMB trade.
    Duquette kept asking for Wolcott, and Woodward kept offering him someone else. Woodward finally offered Lowe–who Duquette really wanted–and that was that.
    Another story is that Duquette jokingly asked for Lowe or Varitek–he was about to release Slocumb- and Woodward thought he said Lowe AND Varitek, so sent them both.

  14. Jay Yencich on March 14th, 2010 4:53 pm

    So this was an exciting game.

    Bradley: 1-2, BB
    Tuiasosopo: 2-4
    Woodward: 1-2, 2B, BB
    Patterson, Carrera, Peguero: 1-1 apiece

    Felix: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 3/2 K/BB, 4/1 G/F

  15. scott19 on March 14th, 2010 4:55 pm

    But, of course, Woodward could’ve avoided that whole “we need bullpen help at the deadline” mess back in ’97 had he not traded away both Jeff Nelson and Bill Risley the year before that.

  16. NBarnes on March 14th, 2010 6:30 pm

    Let’s be fair; Woodward could have avoided a lot of things if he’d not been Woodward. But he was, so he didn’t.

  17. scott19 on March 14th, 2010 7:18 pm

    Just Woody being Woody, I guess.

  18. frozenrope on March 14th, 2010 7:31 pm

    Just returned from the game in Tucson (where I now live). My take:
    1. Tui was very impressive: Good ABs, working counts, solid contact, hustled to third when catcher overthrew his SB attempt (leading to first Ms run) and flashy leather. If/when Lopez experiment fails, Tui has earned his shot at the Corner.
    2. Woodward was sloppy at both 2nd & short, making an error at each.
    3. Garko made two errors at first in the opening frame (but scorer gave him a break on one).
    4. Ackley looked completely lost in his first AB, whiffing on three pitches, the last two on checked swings. Did better the next time, working to a full count before lining to third (with two on) to end the game.

  19. Jay Yencich on March 14th, 2010 10:08 pm

    How did Ackley look on D?

  20. themojoworkin on March 14th, 2010 10:48 pm

    Wondering if there is any sense in signing the currently out of work Jared Washburn. He would come cheap. Maybe he would be another win over Fister/Olsen/etc….? Joe Crede and Carlos Delgado are other out of work players…..

  21. allenwu on March 14th, 2010 11:00 pm

    I really liked Jerry Brewer’s article on Gutierrez. Great to see more appreciation for him.

    However, I kind of appreciate the fact that Gutierrez did not win the Gold Glove Award. Why? Because that would have upped his contract price. Now that his contract is sealed, it’s time to spread the word :D

  22. Kazinski on March 14th, 2010 11:55 pm

    My wife was calling DFT “Cutierrez”, I would have put my foot down, but she does all the bitch slapping in my house.

    Tui should just put his bat away for the rest of camp. If he sticks it will be because of his glove. There is no doubt in my mind that he is the best pure hitter in the infield, even if he takes another year or two to develop his full potential. But he is not going to stick this year unless Wak thinks he won’t hurt him with his glove.

    That said, why not start the season with Tui at the utility spot. Wilson isn’t going to stay longer than it takes to get Hanahan healthy anyway, and Tui actually has a lot more experience at short than Hanahan, considering all levels. If he can’t hack it defensively, as a backup mind you, Wilson or Hanahan when he is ready is just a phone call away. I don’t think it can be be as bad as the 548 innings we got from Yuni last year, and it will be offset by at least some offense.

  23. Kazinski on March 15th, 2010 12:38 am

    And WTF is going on withAdam Moore:

    …on the play Moore was heading for third and dove head first into the bag. Like yesterday with Eric Byrnes, Moore didn’t get his hands out in front to bad[sic] himself and face planted into the dirt and into third. He stayed on the ground and was later helped off of the field with an apparent cut on his cheek.

    Catchers should never be sliding head first except going back to a bag. They don’t take enough punishment on their hands as it is, that they need to risk jamming a finger on a bag or cleate? They need to talk to him about that. If player like Byrnes wants to slide head first them more power to him, but notice that you’ll never see Ichiro diving into a base, or even in the outfield, he does his best to reduce the risk of injury, which is why his only stint on the DL was because of his stomach.

  24. LanceWWU on March 15th, 2010 1:34 am

    Has anyone seen this: http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/fp/flashPollResultsState?sportIndex=pollindex&pollId=86697

    I wonder if the support we’re getting in the Northeast is because the baseball fans over there are more educated and have noticed what Jack Z is doing over here, or somehow they just hate the Angels?

  25. KaminaAyato on March 15th, 2010 2:06 am

    I heard that Tucson was courting 3 Japanese teams, to see if they could get them to have their spring training there. The Diamondbacks supposedly said they would come back to Tucson to play them if that happened.

    That is indeed true. And there has been talk that if they do, they would like to have spring training games between their teams and the MLB teams – which would be darned cool IMO. Of course, there’s the legal work to be done between the two leagues, but I would travel down there to see some games if that were the case.

    …That’s at least one square on your spring training bingo card.

    Hm… I still need “Tickling incident with Ichiro” for bingo…

  26. msb on March 15th, 2010 8:12 am

    Hm… I still need “Tickling incident with Ichiro” for bingo…

    According to a Griffey interview with Drayer, the tickling does not begin until the first day of the season:

    “I gave him a little grab to let him know I was here, but … “

  27. Jay Yencich on March 15th, 2010 8:21 am

    Catchers should never be sliding head first except going back to a bag. They don’t take enough punishment on their hands as it is, that they need to risk jamming a finger on a bag or cleate?

    I remember an organizational mandate from a few years back that all players were to slide in feet first after someone dislocated their shoulder around the bag. I’m tempted to say it was Yung-chi Chen, but it might’ve been someone else. Anyway, they probably stopped hammering it in when they switched regimes and consequently some guys forgot about it. There has been a lot of internal turnover since that time.

    I wonder if the support we’re getting in the Northeast is because the baseball fans over there are more educated and have noticed what Jack Z is doing over here, or somehow they just hate the Angels?

    Probably because we have Cliff Lee. Many Phillies phans I know suddenly recognized the name Zduriencik because that was the guy they perceived to be screwing them.

    Incidentally, there was an ESPN polling some months back asking who Jack Zduriencik was and providing multiple fake answers. Washington state was the only area on the map that got it right.

    Wondering if there is any sense in signing the currently out of work [Jarrod] Washburn. He would come cheap. Maybe he would be another win over Fister/Olsen/etc….?

    With Bedard ahead of schedule, our rotation would conceivably be Felix/Lee/Bedard/RR-S/Snell pretty soon here (May? June?), which isn’t bad at all. Since neither Hyphen nor Snell have options remaining, you’d have to pen one of them to get Washburn back, which would involve some other maneuvering and may not go over well. I’d maybe have Hyphen move back once Bedard’s ready to return because he’s used to it. That would push the winner of Vargas/Fister out (Olson has pitched his way off). I don’t see the M’s doing it at this point but it’s a possibility.

  28. Jack Swan on March 15th, 2010 8:24 am

    A Bill Risley reference! That is the kind of out of the box thinking that reminds me of a guy like Paul Spoljaric.

  29. msb on March 15th, 2010 8:36 am

    re: sliding, from the TNT

    “So just what was Moore doing with that slide?

    “I saw the throw was to the right side of the bag and I wanted to hook slide to the back side of the bag,” Moore said. “But right as I took off, I stumbled.”

    It was the second consecutive day for a Mariners runner to have a similar sliding miscue. Outfielder Eric Byrnes also had a face-first slide on Saturday in Peoria. Byrnes didn’t need stitches, just attention to his scrapes. Moore needed stitches in his chin, but he wasn’t sure how many. “Three or four,” he said. “It was too painful to count. We are having sliding practice tomorrow and me and (Byrnes) are going to teach it.”

    Actually, Wakamatsu and his staff don’t teach the players the headfirst slide.

    “Can’t you tell?” Wakamatsu said. “I don’t know where that’s coming from. I really don’t. We played that Byrnes video on the way down, maybe that’s the wrong thing to do.””

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