Dan Cortes, the hard-throwing right-handed reliever with a few off-the-field incidents in his past, added another this week – and will be lost for the remainder of the season to the Seattle Mariners.
Cortes, 24, suffered a non-displaced fracture of the third metacarpal on his right hand and will need an expected three-week stretch before he can throw a baseball again. That will be in time for winter ball, but nothing sooner.
“It’s an off-the-field, non-baseball related incident and we’re leaving it at that,” manager Eric Wedge said.
Cortes wasn’t available for comment Saturday.
Before he was acquired from Kansas City in 2009 in the Yuniesky Betancourt trade, Cortes had been involved in a pair of incidents that left the Kansas City front office uneasy.
In the first, Cortes was knifed eight times trying to stop a brawl outside a bowling alley that left him seriously hurt and another man dead.
The second was an off-season misdemeanor arrest outside a bar, where a policeman said he saw Cortes urinating in public.
What happened to Cortes this week? No one is saying, and the injury could be one of those completely accidental situations. But the fact the Mariners won’t talk about it leaves the incident open to question.
In 10 appearances with Seattle this season, Cortes was 0-2 with a 5.91 earned run average. With Tacoma, in 32 games, he was 1-2 with a 5.08 ERA.
The Mariners knew they would have to play without Justin Smoak on Saturday, while he rests a groin strain, but then they lost two more players.
Just before game time, center fielder Casper Wells was a scratch with “flu-like” symptoms, replaced in the lineup by Michael Saunders. Then shortstop Brendan Ryan came out between innings with a stiff neck. Luis Rodriguez replaced him.
Left-handed reliever Cesar Jimenez was used in the sixth inning and struck out the left-handed hitting Josh Hamilton, then got Adrian Beltre on a routine fly ball. … With a two-run single in the second-inning, Ichiro Suzuki now has 601 career RBI, the fifth player in franchise history to reach that plateau. With two hits, his 171st and 172nd of the season, he caught and passed Mickey Mantle and is now 110th on the all-time hits list with 2,416 hits. … Mike Carp’s 10th home run gave Seattle’s rookie hitters 35 homers this season, the third highest total in the majors. The Blue Jays (44) and Angels (38) are the only teams with more. … The Mariners will come to a decision today or Monday on whether to shut down ailing infielder Chone Figgins for the season with a hip strain or try to play him in a few games.
Seattle hosts Texas in a 1:10 p.m. game today that will be televised on Root Sports. Probable starting pitchers: Matt Harrison (12-9, 3.56 ERA) vs. Felix Hernandez (14-12, 3.30).